Journals from Deakin University, Australia
2009-08-17 Res Life
Residence life at Deakin is fantastic. I live on campus in the Burwood Student Village, about a five to ten minute walk from the center of campus. The living situation is really nice, with about 10-12 people per dorm and there are about 21 buildings in all. Everyone has been really nice and welcoming. The RAs are encouraging and helpful and everyone seems to get along with minor fuss. I have my own bedroom, with a communal bathroom, kitchen and living room. There are no meal plans offered on the Burwood campus, but this has actually been a bit of a blessing in disguise. Meal times have been a great opportunity to hang out and meet new people, especially Australians who are the majority of the residents in the Village. A lot of the time people will make dinner and then sit around the TV, chatting and eating, with one of the various Australian soap operas playing in the background or Australian Idol which just started last week. There have been many nights were I just end up in the living room, hanging out with people.
One of the annoying things about Res however is the internet situation. As a student you are allocated $15 for the semester for internet usage. Its kind of like our printing balance back at Linfield. As you use the internet, your balance declines. Of course you can put more money on, but with traveling and food and all that taken into consideration, its not really a necessity that I want to put a lot of money into. It doesnt decline rapidly unless you look at a lot of pictures on Facebook or download any files, like movies, music or whatever. I just look at it as an incentive to get out of my dorm and explore more of Australia, which is what I should be doing anyway.
Classes are a bit different than at Linfield. There are two kinds of classes. There are lectures, which are held in theatres and tutorials, which are like small group workshops. Most classes you take will have a one hour lecture, with a tutorial later in the day or week. A single class will only meet once a week, though its actually twice counting both the lecture and the tutorial. Professors have been approachable and helpful in helping me to get settled in the new system. A lot of lecture notes and slides are available on the Deakin equivalent of Blackboard, which is DSO (Deakin Studies Online). Its been a great resource and a lot of professors use it regularly to explain assignments and the like. I just turned in my first essay so Im keeping my fingers crossed that everything goes well. I think I did fine, but well see. Now its time to go into Melbourne and experience some of the intense sports culture.