Flying back to Townsville to start the semester is always bittersweet. I’ll be away from family, friends, and food again, but I’ll also be reunited with the new life I’ve made in Australia. What makes it more bitter is having to go through the subject enrollment process again because I take ages to decide which subjects to do since my Bachelor of Marine Science degree does grant me more flexibility and electives. I remember being exasperated with the different student pages there seemed to be in my first semester and thought I’d write a post to explain what all these pages were as well as some tips on timetables and enrollment.
Ah LearnJCU- saviour and saboteur. Lecturers will put all teaching materials on this page and you can find lecture slides, recordings (if your lecturer is the sort that uploads recordings), and assignment grades on this page. Before the teaching semester starts the subject timetable and outlines will be uploaded here and you can have an early look to see when most assessments are due or when less hectic times will be if you’re planning a holiday. Announcements regarding the subject material will usually be posted here and it will be your most accessed page throughout the semester, foiling many plans to go out.
This is the page you go to enrol in subjects and classes. You can access your study plan and tick the subjects you’re planning to do. Class enrollment only opens once the lecturer decides to open it, so you might have to wait a while between enrolling in subjects and actually enrolling in the classes. Enrol early to get the practical or tutorial time-slot you want! You can view your timetable before enrolling in subjects, simply go to JCU homepage>Student>Class timetables to see the lectures times for different subject combinations. Final grades for the semester will also be uploaded here.
The good thing about getting your timetable early is that you can find out your availabilities and start job hunting if that’s what you’re keen to do. International students can work 20hrs a week and with minimum wage being $18 or more it is tempting for most students to find casual work whilst studying.
You’ll most likely access this page once throughout the semester and it will be to look at your exam timetable. Last semester a personal exam timetable was e-mailed to all students, rendering the usage of this page from one to zero in my browser history. Textbook information can also be found here but most lecturers will state in their subject outline whether you have to get a textbook, and most of the marine subjects I’ve taken don’t require it because there is usually an online version or they typically use journal articles as reference. Once you get your student ID you can add printing money on it through this page. Alternatively there is a machine in the library with the same function but using cash.
Used for e-mailing lecturers, classmates and for lecturers to send you those pesky safety forms to fill in pre-field trip. LearnJCU is wired to send automatic updates to your student e-mail whenever announcements or new material has been uploaded. Make sure to disable the e-mail notification setting on LearnJCU if you don’t want your mail to get clogged. International students get an added round-up of news each week on events happening around campus, although liking the JCU International Facebook page is another way to be kept up to date.
And there you have it, the bitter part about starting a new semester, followed by the very sweet O-Week!