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6 Things You Need to Bring on Your First Day of University

You have selected your education provider, secured your accommodation and enrolled in exciting subjects. All that is left to do is…actually head to class!

Here are the six essential things to bring with you to your first day of university.


The first day of any new adventure can be overwhelming. Take some time before your first day to research how to get to and from campus from your accommodation, and familiarise yourself with the university map. This will help you calm those first-day nerves!

Bring directions or an online mapping app to help you get to and from your education provider, as well as a physical or digital campus map to get around campus.


Where would a university student be without their laptop or tablet? Must-have tech items include your laptop or tablet, as well as chargers for these devices. Make sure your devices are fully charged before heading to campus – power points are often hard to come by. You should also pack universal adaptors if your chargers don’t fit into Australian power points. Don’t forget headphones for studying and commuting!


There is nothing more frustrating than forgetting usernames and resetting passwords when you should be taking notes. While some universities only provide login information on your first day, others will provide you with these details ahead of time. So, if possible, make sure you have access to important sites before your first day on campus.

You will need access to your university’s intranet and assignment submission software, email inbox and your preferred word processing and project software (e.g., Google Workspace including Google Drive).


Whilst we certainly live in a technological world, there is still a place for pen and paper – especially at university!

In fact, did you know writing notes by hand helps the brain remember the information more than typing? So, alongside your tech, make sure to pack notebooks to take notes during class. You’ll also need a small pencil case with pens, highlighters and any course-specific equipment.

Textbooks are also essential, but only for the classes you have scheduled that day. Avoid bringing every single textbook you have purchased. Your back will thank you!

An annual planner/diary will help keep you organised and productive. Most universities will give these out for free on your first day, so keep an eye out! University-specific planners are a great resource as they include the dates of study and exam periods, holidays and on-campus events.

 Clothing and comfort

Not to sound like your parents, but comfort really is key when it comes to long days on campus.

With that in mind, bring a jumper, scarf or extra layer to throw on in cold lecture halls and tutorial rooms. You should also choose comfortable shoes. Some campuses are huge and you will end up taking thousands of steps as you travel between classes!

Pack sunscreen, a hat or protective clothing for lunch breaks spent in the sunshine. The Australian sun is strong and can cause damage very quickly if you aren’t appropriately protected.  


Food is fuel, and staying well-fed and hydrated will help you stay focused and productive throughout your day.

Be sure to pack nutritious snacks. Keep your brain in peak performance by snacking to regulate blood sugar and energy levels. Munch on healthy options like nuts, seeds, fruit and muesli bars to avoid the 3pm queue for the vending machine. Larger meals can be purchased on campus or surrounding cafés and stores, but it is generally cheaper to bring food from home.

We also recommend bringing a reusable water bottle to fill up at water stations around campus. Aim to drink a minimum of 2.1 litres of water per day and even more on hot days or after increased physical activity. You can also bring a reusable coffee cup for those much-needed caffeine hits. Bottoms up!

Need more support? Here’s our complete guide to your first day of university!