Sources of Support
Directors of Studies
At the beginning and end of every term you’ll meet with your Directors of Studies (DoS) to discuss your options, progress and questions. They’re there to advise you on your choices and guide your academic career at Fitz. If you have any problems with any aspect of your academic life (eg difficulties with a supervisor, being unable to attend a practical, an exam clash), they are the person to go to. The respective directors of studies for each subject are below.
|Physical||Prof. James Elliott||jae1001|
|Physical||Dr Andy Jardine||apj24|
|Biological||Dr Holly Canuto||hcc36|
Outside of your academic life, you’re assigned a Tutor. This is another fellow of the college in a subject completely unrelated to your own. If you have any pastoral issues, or academic issues you feel unable to raise with your DoS, speak to them. You’ll meet at the beginning and end of every term for a chin wag and then go on your merry way. They are another friendly face around college.
You get to spend an hour with them once a week in a very intense small group session. To get the most out of them you need to make sure you’re prepared for each supervision. One of the most common phrases you might hear about supervisions is that “you’ll only ever go to a supervision unprepared once”. If you’re struggling academically, be honest with your supervisors and they’ll be able to suggest appropriate ways to get back on track.
They will be going through exactly the same issues as you, and collaborative learning is one of the best ways to understand the material. Copying at Cambridge is, simply put, pointless. You don’t get friends in the exam, so making sure you understand what you’re doing with supervision work is crucial. Ask questions, pose questions, and offer support to your friends - they are one of the best sources of support you’ll have at Cambridge.
Students in the years above
They’ve been there and done it. They’re not that scary, just say hello and ask for help. Use any meetings at the Natural Sciences Society to connect with students from the years above. It’s very helpful to extend your support network.