How to Get a First: The Essential Guide to Academic Success, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

How to Get a First

The Essential Guide to Academic Success, 1st Edition

By Thomas Dixon


184 pages

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Paperback: 9780415317337
pub: 2004-08-05
Hardback: 9780415317320
pub: 2004-08-05
eBook (VitalSource) : 9780203579794
pub: 2004-08-05
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In this informative guide, Thomas Dixon argues that you do not have to be a genius to get a first at university. He sets out to de-mystify first-class degrees in the arts, humanities and social sciences, clearly articulating the difference between the excellent and the merely competent in undergraduate work.

This concise, no-nonsense guidebook will give prospective and current students advice on teaching and learning styles that prevail in university and on how to manage their two most important resources - their time and their lecturers. In an accessible and entertaining style, the author looks at subjects such as:

  • making the transition from school to university
  • developing transferable skills
  • making use of lectures and seminars
  • using libraries and the Internet
  • note-taking, essays, seminars and presentations
  • common mistakes to avoid
  • writing with clarity and style
  • revision and examinations.

Illustrated with many examples from a range of academic disciplines, How to Get a First is an all-purpose guide to success in academic life. Visit the companion website


'[How to Get a First] is the title of an excellent guide by Thomas Dixon … it is a compilation of what he wishes he had known before he went to university.' - The Daily Telegraph

'This is not some sort of get rich (top grades) quick scheme but a collection of good advice.' - Physical Sciences Educational Reviews

Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. Taking Aim: The Task and the Resources 3. Lectures, Classes and Seminars 4. Libraries and Reading Lists 5. Reading and Taking Notes from Books and Articles 6. Using the Internet 7. Planning Essays, Presentations and Dissertations 8. Giving a Presentation 9. Writing Essays and Dissertation I: The Basics 10. Writing Essays and Dissertations II: Arguing with Style 11. Revision and Exams 12. How to Get a First

About the Author

Thomas Dixon has taught at the Universities of Cambridge and London, and is now a Lecturer in History at Lancaster University.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
REFERENCE / Personal & Practical Guides