Can you help with my fear of failing?

I’ve failed 5/6 subjects this year and technically I am 2nd year but its my first year at Uni Melb.I have recently moved to Australia and I undertook 40+ hours of paid work per week but I reduced that when I felt like I was letting go of my studies.I dealt with depression during the first semester and I felt like I had coped with that much better in 2nd semester. I am so scared that I am going to be kicked out or be put on suspension. I really want to remain in my degree and work to get the grades I know I can get but I am really worried what the UPC meeting will result

Thanks for your question. It sounds like you have been going through a difficult time and I praise you for your strength, perseverance and motivation to do well. Things can often mount up at university, especially when we’re away from home. It seems like you have been working incredibly hard to support yourself financially, and through depressed mood; both of which can be incredibly challenging issues, difficult to manage on their own! It is completely reasonable and normal that academic performance drops when we have less family and community support. Don’t forget that you are also adapting to a new/different culture, way of life, and teaching and studying methods, all of this in a foreign language! This is a process that many international students go through, and academic performance dropping can typically add to both depressed and anxious mood, and also not knowing what to do about it. This can be a confusing and frustrating time.

You aren’t alone in this journey, and there are numerous ways forward. First of all however, it is imperative that you attend your CSU hearing and be as honest and dedicated as you appear to be. Expressing your willingness to work hard and improve your academic performance is important. Before, during and indeed after the meeting, it is important to remain as calm as possible. Some ways to do this are basic circular breathing to calm the body and mind, and further relaxation exercises, which can be accessed from the Counselling and Psychological services website or this link.

Further to the above, there are more official options for you to investigate in order to aid with enrolment, special consideration and advocacy. As you experienced depressed mood earlier this year, this would have physically affected your ability to concentrate,motivate and daily functioning, all of which are incredibly necessary to study. Getting into STOP 1 is a priority to possibly apply for special consideration if this occurs in the future, and contacting Student Advocacy through the University of Melbourne Students Union. To help ongoing management of mood issues and anxiety, you may also want to book in with us here at the Counselling and Psychological Services.

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