The first step to starting your uni adventure is knowing what you're getting yourself into! Start here for a rundown on the essentials of studying at UNSW, including how to enrol in courses, where to go to get your ID, and how to access your lectures and course-work even from home.
Moodle, WebCMS and myUNSW
Moodle and myUNSW are the main ways of accessing information about your time at UNSW, and WebCMS handles all the course materials for any computing course. It's a really good idea to get familiar with how to use these resources.
Moodle allows you to handle the academic side of your studies. You'll be able to access lecture recordings, announcements, your course forum and any course materials from here.
For most Computer Science courses that you'll take, you'll be spending more time using WebCMS. This is where you'll find course materials and announcements instead of on Moodle. You'll gain access to the relevant WebCMS page after enrolling in a computing course. Every course will handle online lectures, tutorials and assessments slightly differently, so pay close attention to the announcements from your lecturers!
myUNSW is how you access and change any information on the administrative side of your studies. The main things you'd do on myUNSW will be managing your fees and payments, concession cards, checking out your academic transcript, and updating your class timetable and enrolment.
Your zID is essentially your student ID, and it'll be what you'll be using for everything important here at UNSW, so it's obviously really important that you know yours!
If you haven't been issued a zID yet, complete this form and that's pretty much it! UNSW policy requires you to update your password every 6 months, and there are restrictions in place to make sure you don't swap between the same two passwords. If you want to change your password, or have forgotten it, go here.
Being updated with your uni email is essential for you to HD (or pass) your studies at UNSW. Primarily you'll be getting course and faculty announcements, and updates on forum threads. More recently, this is also where you'll receive updates on the COVID-19 policies at UNSW.
The easiest way to ensure that you don't miss an email is to set up forwarding to your personal email. You can also use an email app such as Spark, which lets you access all your email accounts from one place.
You will probably see the name Arc floating around a lot during O-Week and might be wondering what it actually is. Essentially, Arc is UNSW’s student organisation and they run pretty much all major events outside the classroom from Clubs to Sports. If we have one piece of advice, it’s to JOIN ARC (it’s free) and gives you access to a load of discounts on and off campus!
To join during O-Week, go to the Arc Stalls scattered around campus, where volunteers should help you get set up. Otherwise, you can visit the Arc Office which is located just to the left of the Basser Steps. If you're not on campus, you can still join by filling out the form online!
Nucleus Student Hub
The UNSW Nucleus Student Hub is located on the Ground Floor of Main Library, and they provide administrative support to students. Although many of the services that Nucleus provides can be completed online, students may be required to go to the Hub in person to process other requests. This will include getting a fast service academic transcript, receiving your ID card, or getting your calculator approved by UNSW.
Do you know when the uni terms are? Or more importantly, do you know when your holidays are?
At UNSW, we get three 11-week terms (aka trimesters) each year. Week 6 of each of these terms is flexibility week, which is a break week where there will be no content taught and nothing due! Each term is followed by a one-week study period, and then two weeks in which your exams will be held. After this, you'll have a well-deserved two weeks of break, before the next term starts.
The UNSW Academic Calendar has all the exact dates for the year, so be sure to check it out to plan your holidays around them!
Choosing classes at uni is a whole choose your own adventure by itself. You can literally take almost any course that UNSW offers - but how do you know if those courses will actually count towards your degree?
The first step is to get familiar with your degree requirements in the UNSW Handbook. This will tell you all the courses you need to take to complete your degree, as well as every single course offered at UNSW. There's quite an overwhelming amount of information in the Handbook though, so we've also published a handy Pre-Enrolment Guide that lays it all out for students studying a degree in CSE! Read the guide to understand what all the key terms mean, the courses you should be doing in First Year, and a rundown on the enrolment process.
Before you enrol officially, you can use the Notangles website to see what your class timetables could look like. Then after you officially enrol in classes on myUNSW, you'll be issued a calendar. If you have any questions about your timetable, the UNSW Timetables landing page will help. In particular, it's a really good idea to sync up your UNSW timetable to your personal calendar so you have all your events (including exams) in one place! And if you don't have a personal calendar yet, getting one will help make your life much easier to keep track of everything in your work, study and social life.
Choose your own adventure!
Now that you're up to speed with the basics of the workings of UNSW, it could be time to jump into the workings of a CSE degree and check out this comprehensive Course Map.
And if you're lucky enough to have any in-person classes, find out the insider travel tips to get you a little extra sleep before you have to make your commute!
Don't like these options? Check out the full roadmap below!