Advice for first year engineering students



Thinking from a first year student's perspective, most students are totally blank about what engineering college is and how it functions. The last exposure they got was the junior college which is not enough to get an idea about engineering. Day One of engineering college and students have no idea where to go. They mostly follow the crowd or ask the security, all of which lead us to the notice boards.

First Year Engineering studies are bit difficult as compared to second/third and final year. You will face lot of challenges in First Year.

Engineering admission process takes bit of time. After the process is complete Engineering Colleges start somewhere around 2nd week of August (bit late). Exams for the SEM1 is somewhere around November end. That means students have less time (< 4 months) to prepare for semester1 (SEM1) exams.

Since it is the first year, students may take sometime to settle down with the college environment/accomodation and engineering studies. Also they seems to relax a bit after joining the college.

Students will be spending most of the time in college for lecturers/practical’s and writing assignments. Three months will pass by within no time. Preparatory leave (around 25-30 days) will be given before the exams. But most of this time will be spent in viva (oral exam) and file submissions.


We have listed below few tips/advice
from engineering students to get you started -


Be focused and study from day 1

Study smartly, study hard and start from day 1. Yes day 1.

Few subjects like Maths, Mechanics, BEE, SPA and Engineering Drawing are bit complex. Most of the students find it difficult and some of them fail in these subjects. You need to take utmost care and plan in advance for these subjects so that you can pass in first attempt.

Subjects to traget in SEM1 : Maths 1, BEE, Mechanics.
Subjects to traget in SEM2 : Maths 2, SPA, Engineering Drawing.
Rest of the subjects are not difficult.
Check here for first year engineering syllabus.

Check for university question papers to get a feel of the paper pattern.
Find the chapter wise marks distribution. Focus on important topics.

If you are not able to understand any topic then do speak with your college teacher and friends/seniors.

If you find any subject really difficult then do join coaching classes which will help you to clear your concepts. Basis our past experience we recommend students to Join any good coaching class for Maths1/Mechanics/ BEE (Sem1) and Maths2/ED/SPA (Sem2). It is good to invest in classes upfront rather than getting a KT and then spending on private coaching and revaluation fees.

Attend lectures (in college) regularly so that you have understanding of the topic. Also you need to maintain your attendance minimum up to 75%. Don't miss your labs/practical’s.

College Fest and Cultural Events

College Fest and Cultural Events are very nice but not at the stake of your education. Be mindful when joining such events. You need to ensure that you are spending more time on studies rather than working on marketing (and other activities) of the events.

While working for events you also need to ensure that you are not missing your lectures in college (also classes) and keeping yourself updated of what’s going in the class. We recommend students to participate in events only after First year is completed.

Does your participation in college fest and events add value to your resume?

Not really. When you go for a Job interview, companies will ask you questions with respect to job requirement and your education stream (Computers/Electronics). They wont take much interest in how many events you have participated.

Is the pointer (CGPA) important?

Pointer are the final grades (rating) given basis of your marks. Getting good pointer is one of the requirements to get a good job. Companies look for good pointer and practical knowledge during selection of candidate. Companies have a criteria for minimum 7 CGPA or more (depends on companies).
CGPA also matters if you plan for higher studies. So please be serious and score well starting from Sem1.

Books and Notes

Find out which books/notes are good for a given subject. Speak to your seniors for suggestions. Don't spend on new text books (in the end its your choice). After every SEM the subjects will change and you may not need the same book ever again in engineering. Go for second hand books and then on return of books you will get some percent (around 70%) of money refund.
Try to maintain (self made) good notes and keep them handy. It will be useful during preparation for Internal and final exams.
Check here for popular book and notes for first year.

Rapport with your teachers

Maintain Good rapport with your teachers. They will guide/support when you are in need of some help/Knowledge. Don't mess up with them... they have control over your internal exams.

Ask questions in class. But don't mess up or challenge your professor (at your own risk).

Study groups

Join study groups on whatsapp. These group will help you in solving your doubts on various topics. Students are always ready to help fellow mates in case of queries or any help. You will also get updates (like exam time table, syllabus, notes, etc)

Time management is very important, manage your time in effective way. You will be spending most of your time in college. So plan accordingly to utilise your time in evening (post college) for studies.

Online Learning

For some subjects you can also refer to online videos (YouTube) which will help to clear your concepts.

Senior friends

They are very important. Approach them when you need some help or have doubts on certain topics. They may guide on various topics like books/notes/classes/ accommodation etc. The will share their experience and help wherever you can get stuck. Be mindful with whom you make friends (seniors). Not all are good. So make good decision.

Friends/colleagues in your class

Make good friends/colleagues in your class. Having a good team will be helpful during your education life. They will guide/support/ stand with you whenever needed. Be social.
Don’t make enemies.

Projects and Internship

Do not focus on working on projects or any internship during the first year. You can do that in the next three years (Second/Third/Final year). Don't spend much time on non-educational activities which will not add value.

Hope you like the above suggestions/tips/advices. If you have any comments or advice do mention in the comments section.



Contributors: MU Engineering Students (Second/Third/Final year).

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Tags: Adive, Tips, Suggestions, Engineering Classes, First Year Engineering