Cycling in Groningen. Many a person can become absolutely discombobulated by it. None more so than exchange students, which is why the University of Groningen office for student affairs decided to use it as an analogy to explain that studying in Groningen requires some different Academic Skills. Cut to: this animation.
What are some of the fun facts for this production? — Nou mejong, dat zit zo.
The voices were inspired by Charlie Brown. Or actually, by Snoopy and Woodstock. An initial attempt to do the voices like the adults in Charlie Brown — like trumpet sounds — didn’t work quite well. It would have required someone playing the trumpet, mangling it actually, and all I had was relatively clean stock trumpet sounds.
The approach explained in the following video however did work: recording the voices by talking low and slow, and then cranking up the speed of the audio.
Now, I know recording normally and then pitching the audio with or without stretching is perfectly easy these days, but I do like to pretend the slow delivery gave it that little something extra.
Another fun fact is that that Silly Walks road sign actually exists. One like it was placed at a zebra crossing near our kids’ school just last year.
Also, there’s bit of Groninger dialect hidden at the end there. For the locals who watch this video.
So you’ve decided to study in Groningen.
Once arrived, navigating the rules of traffic can be daunting.
You may be able to ride a bike, but cycling in Groningen is an experience in and of itself.
It may seem familiar, but the rules differ.
The same goes for lectures.
To study successfully at our faculty and cooperate with other students,
it’s important to acquaint yourself with the appropriate academic behaviour, and skills.
Like critical thinking
finding and referencing sources
and academic writing forms
So be pro-active in familiarising yourself with what is expected of you:
attend introduction events,
contact the study adviser,
consult the Student Service Centre,
but in General:
Just ask questions.