Wednesday, 9 May 2012

"Going up" to AU

The first time I went to University, I learned a foreign language: Spanish. I also learned a quaint version of English in which, at the start of "Michaelmas term", you "went up" to college, where you "read" a subject with a strange-sounding name like MML, SPS, compsci or natsci. The weeks started on Thursdays and sometime in November everyone took to their beds (or, more likely, the bar) with Fifth Week Blues. (Term started in October and lasted hardly any time at all, but the academic year did go on until June.)

The second time, I'll be learning it all, all over again.

For a start, I'll have to get used to calling it "school", after spending three years telling my language students that, in English, you leave school at 18 and after that it's called university. 

I won't be choosing papers for my course or writing essays for them; instead I'll be choosing "courses" for my "program", for which I will write "papers", some (but not all) of which may be "essays", since I will be, after all, studying creative writing.

The whole thing starts not with Freshers' Week but with "Welcome Week", which includes an "Involvement Fair", which is what I used to call a Freshers' Fair. The main event of the week is not matriculation but "Opening Convocation", during which undergrads (who may or may not be called undergrads) wear matching tshirts rather than gowns. 

And that's just the beginning! Confused? I will be. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So you are going to AU?! That's so exciting! I have been reading your blog for a while (and have also read your book, which I LOVED). I lived in DC the past two summers for school and fell in love with the city. Congrats and have a wonderful time!