Materials and Resources

Materials you will need:


For classes:

  • A pen or pencil (probably more than one)
  • A clipboard with loose leaf paper (so that you don't have to carry around a series of binders)
  • AND a binder with dividers at home, in which to store all of your notes from your clipboard
  • OR a laptop, which can replace the clipboard/binder system. You can bring your laptop with you to class, type notes as you go along and organize them on your hard drive. You could also save them to your ‘folder' in PAWS, where it is less possible that you will lose them permanently.
  • Textbooks can be purchased either at the U of S bookstore, the bookstore online (check out their "My Textbook" section), another used bookstore, or through the student run Buy/Sell Used Textbooks from the U of S Facebook group.  It is a good idea to check with your professor before you purchase a used textbook. Some professors are more lenient about which edition is acceptable and some use online resources that are accessed through a code purchased with your textbook.  Depending on the textbook, access codes may or may not be available to purchase individually. When buying a used textbook, make sure you are getting an acceptable copy and ask if it comes with any lab books or access codes. Sometimes used copies require a little more work on your part, because you won't have the same page numbers as everyone else.
image of checklist linking to image credits page


For Home:

  • As mentioned above, a binder in which to keep your notes
  • Some students like to have highlighters and coloured pens to keep notes organized
  • A computer to write papers & lab reports and access online resources
  • Some students prefer to have a printer at home; alternatively, printers for student use are available on campus - typically in a library or computer lab. Scanning is free on campus printers.


The University of Newcastle Australia developed a free iphone/ipad app for first year university students. It is available on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

If you've found this short orientation helpful, you may want to look at these other resources, which go much more in depth about the university experience and offer plenty of helpful advice:

  • Bernstein, Mark W., and Yadin Kaufmann, Eds. How to Survive Your Freshman Year. 2nd Ed. Atlanta: Hundreds of Heads Books, 2006. Print.
  • Dougan, Catherine and Ron Dougan. College Smarts: the survival and success guide for Canadian students. Calgary and Toronto: Redstone and Stoddart, 1998.
  • McIntyre, Michael and Sharon McIntyre. University Matters: prepare for the challenges-realize your potential. Rockcliffe, Ontario: University Matters, 2005. Print. 
  • Newport, Cal. How to Win at College: surprising secrets for success from the country's top students. New York: Broadway, 2005. Print.
  • Nist-Olejnik, Sherrie, and Jodi Patrick Holschuh. College Rules!: how to study, survive, and succeed in college. 2nd Ed. Toronto: Ten Speed Press, 2007. Print.
  • Van Blerkom, Dianna L. Orientation to College Learning. 5th Ed. Boston: Thomson Wadsworth, 2007. Print.