A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
This week the first semester began for real, and classes and clubs began in earnest. This post is a bit of a reflection on getting back into studying after the long summer holiday, and about some new things I’ve learned and tried.
I spent last week trying out a range of classes, before settling on the few that I will take for credit this semester. Each teacher described the classes in a really engaging manner, and my classmates seem eager, interested, and interesting. Embarrassingly, I had quite forgotten that a new semester requires new reading material, and so a couple of hasty book orders were placed online. Let’s hope they arrive in time for this week’s lessons…
Enrolling on uSis
I always find this a chore and a challenge, but it has to be done. At the international students’ introduction days I learned some useful tips, which made enrolling a LOT easier this year for me:
1) Don’t look up courses by name on uSis. I made this mistake last semester. Instead, look up the course by the prospectus code.
2) Think creatively about the final letter in the class codes when it comes to enrolling for final papers/exams. In my Master’s classes, we do a final research paper, rather than an exam. However, for these final papers, some Master’s courses require an enrollment for a tentamen (test), the code for which ends in ‘T’. Some require an enrollment for a paper, with a code ending in ‘R’.
3) If in doubt, double check the codes for each class with the Secretary for each Faculty.
4) There are 2 times per semester for enrollment: at the start, and again later on for the exams/papers. Don’t forget!
Maybe this is old news for most readers, but it helped me, so I thought I’d share.
On Wednesday I went to Einstein’s pub for the weekly ISN-led international students’ night. The weather had taken a turn for the worse that day, and frantic messages were sent between my friends about how best to negotiate a bike and an umbrella at the same time. I arrived in a downpour, with soggy trousers, but soon warmed up due to the body heat from the huge crowd in the pub. I had a really fun time, and got to meet even more new people, which was great.
Last night I went to the meet and greet meeting for the language exchange club. I arrived, made myself a name badge which said what languages I speak and which ones I want to learn/practice. I’m on the lookout for Japanese speakers to practice with, or Dutch speakers so that I can finally improve my Nederlands. Alas, there were no Japanese speakers, and only two Dutch people, but maybe I’ll find some conversation partners at a later language exchange event.
This week I’ll be going to the intro meetings for the yoga club and the arts and crafts club. I’m hoping to be more flexible and more crafty by the end of the year!