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Final Year Undergraduate Students

Welcome back to Uni! Things will inevitably feel different when you arrive back on campus after a long break and it might take some time to get used to the learning environment again. Your final year is likely to be one where some things will feel harder; there may be a greater workload, more challenging course content and perhaps a greater level of pressure or expectation. However, you should remember that you have got this far - you already have the fundamental skills and experience that you need to complete your course. This year is a chance to build on those strengths and to think about how to channel them in whatever direction you decide to take next.

Whether you are new to 301 or have been a regular throughout your degree, this resource should include plenty of ideas that you can apply to your learning. There are a range of core, recommended and optional resources to engage with over the coming months to get the most out of this final year of your course.

The learning objectives of this resource are as follows:

  • Refresh and develop your skills to do the best you can this year
  • Reflect on your personal strengths, gaps and challenges
  • Set skills-related goals for the academic year and work towards them
  • Apply your academic skills to your course learning and assessment


How to Use this Course

Resources are broken down into sections below. Each section contains a set of resources and activities relevant to the suggested stage of your course:

  • Core resources are those that will be relevant for everyone and should be completed
  • Recommended resources are those that should be completed if relevant
  • Optional resources are those that may be of interest

Please use this course flexibly to dip in and out of the resources as appropriate, to help develop the skills you will need for your learning and assessments. Some resources will be useful as a refresher, while other areas may be new to you. If you wish to record your progress on the course, you can work towards the Academic Skills Certificate to gain recognition for your ongoing skills development. It should be noted that some resources will be useful as a refresher, while other areas may be new to you (and extremely useful throughout your final year!)

Learning Effectively Online

Academic Skills for Well-Being

Getting the Most out of Online Lectures

Weeks 1-4

With the skills, knowledge and experience that you’ve gained in past years, you’ve got a good foundation to start from this year. Now is the time to take stock. Do you need to brush up on particular skills? Does your feedback from last year’s work point towards areas to focus on? What else can you master to give yourself the edge in your final year?

Why not come into this year with tip top organisational and time management skills and a recap of core study skills fresh in your mind? Add to that some specific areas likely to be of interest this year (e.g. dissertation skills) and you will be giving yourself a solid start to this important year.

You may already be familiar with some concepts and therefore choose to concentrate on other skills. Similarly, you might be unsure as to which ones are the most important to you. Even if you’ve used it before, the 301 Skills Audit (also below) is useful to diagnose specific areas for your study skills development.

Resource Core/Recommended/Optional Description Time Commitment
LOGOworkshoprecordingLOGOonlineresource Putting your feedback into practise Core Workshop recording & online resources 30 mins
LOGOworkshoprecording Reflecting on your academic progress Core Workshop Recording 30 mins
LOGOworkshoprecording Managing your time and avoiding distractions Core Workshop Recording 30 mins
LOGOonlineresource Learning effectively online Core Online resources N/A
LOGOonlineresource Academic Skills for Wellbeing Recommended Online resources N/A
LOGOonlineresource Getting the most out of online lectures Optional Online resources N/A
LOGOworkshoprecording Speed reading Optional Workshop Recording 30 mins
LOGOworkshoprecording Focused reading Optional Workshop Recording 30 mins
LOGOonlineresource Maths and Statistics online resources Optional

Maths Online Resources

Statistics Online Resources

LOGOinteractiveresource Maths anxiety Optional Interactive Digital Workshop 30 mins
LOGOinteractiveresource Group working: online and face to face Optional

Interactive Digital Workshop

General Group Work and Collaboration resources
Online Resources

30 mins

Skills Audit 

A skills audit is a way to gain an overview of your existing strengths and identify skills gaps for development.

It can be a helpful starting point to set priorities and goals to work on and reflect back on your progress over time.

Take a skills audit here.

Skills Audit Icon

Weeks 5-8

Now that we’re really underway with the semester, things may feel intense. Challenges of different shapes and sizes are likely to present themselves. Courses with low contact time may require a lot of self-motivation and discipline, whereas full diaries can feel draining and relentless. You may feel extra pressure as a finalist, but it is still really important to balance university studies with plenty of ‘down time’.

Taking breaks for exercise, socialising and relaxation will help you study effectively.

Below are some recommended study skills activities to keep you on track this first semester. As before, some of this will recap ideas you’ve already come across and some of it will be useful if you are facing new challenges for the first time, for example independent research for a dissertation or final year project.

Resource Core/Recommended/Optional Description Time Commitment
LOGOonlineresource Dissertation Planning Core if doing a dissertation / independent research Online Resources, including downloads N/A
LOGOonlineresource Library Information and Digital Literacy Tutorials Recommended Online resources N/A
LOGOinteractiveresource Critical reading and writing Recommended Interactive Digital Workshop 30 mins
LOGOonlineresource Essay structure and planning Recommended Online Resources N/A
LOGOworkshoprecording Developing an academic argument Recommended Workshop Recording 30 mins
LOGOonlineresource Maths and Statistics online resources Optional

Maths Online Resources

Statistics Online Resources

LOGOsignpost Student Wellbeing Service Optional Other Service N/A


Please share your experiences so far. Have a go at answering the following multiple-choice questions and submit the form to record your responses (a copy will be emailed to you). You will then be able to see how other students have responded to these questions.

(Please note: your responses will be anonymous.)

Weeks 9-12

Deadlines and January exams on the horizon? 301 has a range of support and guidance available to support you in your assessments, whatever form they may take.

At this stage it would be useful to check the guidance provided by your department regarding the structure and format of your assessments, so that you can prepare effectively. You may encounter different forms of assessment. As with your semester 2 exams last academic year, current limits imposed by Covid-19 are likely to impact which assessment methods are used for your modules. Now is a good time to remind yourself of our assessment resources so you can be as prepared as possible across a range of different assessment types.

These final weeks of the semester may be a busy period for you when you are managing a number of assessments and deadlines. If you are finding it difficult to stay on track, the resources on time management and beating procrastination can help. You can also book a tailored 1:1 session with one of our experienced tutors. There is still time to brush up on your study habits! If you start to feel overwhelmed though, let your Personal Tutor know, or access other university support services available to you.

Resource Core/Recommended/Optional Description Time Commitment
LOGOonlineresource Managing your time and beating procrastination Recommended Online Resources 30 mins
LOGOonlineresource Preparing for online assessments Core Online resources 30 mins
LOGOonlineresourceLOGOworkshoprecording Exam revision Optional Online resources & Workshop Recording 45 mins
LOGOonlineresourceLOGOworkshoprecording Exam technique Optional

Online resources & Workshop Recording

60 mins
LOGOonlineresource Proofreading Recommended Online resources 30 mins

Next Steps

The start of the spring semester marks a significant milestone.You are likely to have now submitted and received feedback on final year work! It is a good time to reflect on your studies: what has gone well? What have been your biggest challenges? Which academic skills should you focus on developing?

Feedback on your semester 1 work can help you identify your strengths and areas for improvement. Retaking the skills audit below will also help you to determine your own action plan for continuing to develop your academic skills throughout the remainder of your course. Remember: many of the skills you have developed while at Sheffield are transferable to a huge variety of careers, as well as further study. For help with your post-uni plans, visit the Careers Service.

Dissertation resources and support

If you are working on a dissertation or final year project, 301 has a range of dissertation resources that you may find useful as you move through the second semester of your course:

Resource Core/Recommended/Optional Description Time Commitment
LOGOonlineresourceLOGOworkshoprecording Dissertations Recommended Online resources & Workshop Recordings 2 hours
LOGOonlineresource Statistics Online Resources Optional Online resources N/A
LOGOonlineresource Library Information and Digital Literacy Tutorials Recommended Online resources N/A

Circle of Learning

Having worked through these resources, you will probably have begun to identify a circle of development that occurs as your skills progress. Once you learn and develop new skills, you will use them in everyday life (not just within academia), reflect upon them and then build on them further. No matter what age you are, you never stop developing/honing in on the skills you have and reflecting on your work and practice. The following may help to consolidate and gain recognition for this developmental process:

Skills Audit

You hopefully took a skills audit at the beginning of the semester, most likely at pre-arrival/intro week. It would be a good idea to consider retaking the audit now that the semester is finished. It can be extremely valuable to review and reflect back on your progress over time, while identifying priorities and goals to work on in the future. Hopefully, it will give you the right momentum to set you up for the next semester.

Skills Audit Screenshot

Academic Skills Certificate Logo

Academic Skills Certificate

If you want to gain recognition for developing your skills and reflecting on your experience (which you will be doing following this course) you can work towards the Academic Skills Certificate. It acknowledges not only your commitment to enhancing your academic skills but also your employability skills and personal development. Simply put, if you are already working towards it why not get proper recognition for all of your hard work! It is also important to celebrate their achievements (e.g. planning a nice activity for yourself).

Evaluation Survey

This marks the end of this programme. Congratulations on making it to the end! We hope that you have found it useful and we would very much value any comments or feedback (see it is used frequently in all aspects of life!) you may have. Please complete our evaluation survey to share your experiences of this resource with us, helping us to develop the programme for the future.

Please note: your responses will be anonymous.

Further information

Please explore the tabs below for further information on these key aspects of your learning experience:

MySkills Portfolio

Level Up Your Academic Skills focuses on the key academic skills that will support you in your studies, however, during your time at the University of Sheffield you will have the opportunity to develop a wide range of skills and attributes through your course, your work experience and extracurricular activities. You can reflect on and record these using mySkills, an innovative new way for you to assess, record, build and reflect on your own skills profile.

Find out more about mySkills here

This short video introduces MySkills and highlights how you may want to use it to build a portfolio of skills development and experience to use for future employment opportunities.

Online learning

Although most of your course will involve face-to-face activities such as lectures, seminars, lab classes and practicals, you are likely to experience some online elements to your course as well. Online learning allows you to access your course materials remotely and in a flexible way, developing your ability to learn independently. However, it may also be a new and unfamiliar experience that requires new skills and study strategies. These resources provide a starting point for understanding the practicalities and challenges of online learning:

Study Skills Online: Online Learning

Below are some of our suggestions for online tools that can help you to organise yourself, manage your time, and block out digital distractions for online learning. For further suggestions, see this guide to using digital learning tools.

Useful Outside Resources Description
Calendarpedia allows you to download templates, print off and display at your workstation and develop an overview of deadlines for coursework.
Trello Trello helps with organising and creating a to-do list by creating decks of cards for tasks, adding sub-tasks to set deadlines and noting what actions are done.
Evernote It syncs notes across devices, organizes folders, searches text, adds tags to notes and allows you to collaborate with others.
Website Blockers Apps or software you can install on your phone and/or computer to block out the internet, apps and games for a certain amount of time as needed. They allow you to streamline your attention to the work that matters/needs to be focused on.
Remember the Milk Free tool that is compatible with every device and it allows you to sync all your devices for easier time management. The app can help you manage your tasks easily and remind you of them - wherever you are. You can share tasks and lists with others (great for teams)
Focus Keeper This app is based on the principle of the Pomodoro Technique and can help deal with procrastination for people who feel overwhelmed by tasks.
Academic Skills for Wellbeing

Making the transition to a new level of study can be a challenging experience. It may involve moving to a completely new environment and it may involve working with a greater level of independence. Whilst this can be exciting and present lots of new opportunities, it can also be daunting and take some getting used to. The resources below explore the connection between your study skills and your wellbeing, and highlight the wellbeing support services on offer at the university:

Study Skills Online: Academic Skills for Wellbeing

Below are some other services that you might find helpful if you need any further support or advice:

Student Wellbeing Service

The Student Wellbeing Service offers single session (40-minute) appointment with the Wellbeing Advisor in your faculty.

Student Access to Mental Health Support (SAMHS)

Student Access to Mental Health Support (SAMHS) is a single point of contact for students at all levels to access psychological support.

University Health Service

You can speak to your GP at the University’s Health Service, (or the local GP practice where you are registered).

Sheffield Nightline and The Samaritans

You can also speak anonymously and confidentially for advice and support at any time to Sheffield Nightline, or The Samaritans.

If you are in crisis: SSiD

In the event of an emergency or if you are in crisis, please visit the SSiD Emergency Contacts pages.

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Academic Skills Certificate