Welcome to my guide on how to start a conversation in college.
In this guide, you will learn how to introduce yourself and make more friends in college.
In addition to that, you will discover different ways to create a conversation naturally in college.
To make it easier for you, I have provided some easy-to-use conversation starters too. This way, you can easily talk to anyone you want in the college.
How To Introduce Yourself In The First Conversation
If you want to know more people and have more friends in college, you need to learn how to approach and introduce yourself.
I will show you different ways to approach people later. For now, I want to share with you how to introduce yourself first.
Since you are in the college and this is not a networking event, you can use the most direct approach and forget about those elevator pitches.
First, just look at the person you want to get to know and say “Hi.”
Wait until she pays attention to you, then you can continue to tell her your name and ask for her name in return.
- If you are new to the college: “Hi. I’m new here. My name is John. What’s your name?”
- If you are not new or both of you have seen each other a few times: “Hi. I have seen you around but didn’t get the chance to know you. I’m John. What’s your name?”
Super Important Tips For First Conversation
1) Introduce yourself immediately
I know a lot of people are afraid of the awkward silence. But, the more you delay introducing yourself, the more uncomfortable it would be.
So, I always introduce myself right away when I have the chance, and I suggest you do the same. Doing so will portray that you are a friendly person and that characteristics alone can make you more attractive.
For example, whenever you pick a seat, the stranger beside you will usually take a glimpse at you as soon as you sit down. This is good timing to introduce yourself. Just look at her and say, “Hi, how are you? I’m John, by the way. What’s your name?”
Most people are cool enough to give your their names. Then, you can exchange a few words with her. For example, you can ask, “so, what brings you here?” or “Are you into reading/basketball/(or whatever reason you are there) too? This way, you will be able to learn some information about her.
Remember to share some info about yourself, too, so she can contribute more to the conversation based on your replies.
2) Do not drag the first conversation.
The first conversation does have to be too long. Basically, you just want to get to know the person’s name or maybe which class she is from, and that’s it.
It is a casual conversation, not an investigation, so you might not want to keep asking too many irrelevant questions the first time.
3) End the conversation properly
For the first conversation, I would suggest you take the initiative to end the conversation correctly.
For example, you met her at an event, and when the event is about to end, you can say goodbye to her and let her know that it’s great to know her today.
Or, if you met her in the corridor, you can tell her that you need to go, and maybe both of you can continue the conversation again next time.
Ending Conversation Example:
- If the conversation earlier went well: “Well, I think that’s it for this event. By the way, it’s great to know you. You seem like a fun person. Maybe we can grab a drink together sometime? “
- If the conversation earlier is too short (you can just say goodbye. It’s good enough to get her name this time): “I think I have to go. Need to catch up with my friends (give a reason). See you around next time.”
As you can see from the conversation flow above, it is not that hard to introduce yourself and have a simple conversation with the person you have just met.
The above script is tested, and I have used it multiple times. I still use it today whenever I join an event or a group activity. You can modify it to suit your own personality, so it won’t sound like reading a script.
7 Ways on How To Start A Conversation In College
There are many opportunities to initiate a conversation in the college. I have listed all the good ways to start talking to your friends below, together with some practical examples.
1) Ask For Opinion
You can ask your friends for opinion on many things, ranging from fashion, movies, to hairstyles.
For example, if your friend has watched the latest movie, you can ask her if the film is good and why? You can also ask her what kind of hairstyle or sunglasses suits you better.
Alternatively, you can again ask her opinion on dealing with a specific challenge you face in life. It can be related to relationships, family, personal growth, or personality.
- In your opinion, do you think a short hairstyle looks good on me?
- What do you think about the latest Avengers movie?
- When you feel stress about the assignment, what do you do?
2) Ask For Recommendation
You can ask for a recommendation on books, movies, music, computers, phones, games, earphones, or anything you are interested in getting. If you are not sure what to eat for lunch, well, you can ask her for a recommendation too.
- I know you are good with computers. What is the best laptop under $300 in the market right now?
- I’m thinking of getting a new phone. Which one would you recommend me to go for?
- Are there any good self-development books you can recommend to me? I feel like learning something new lately.
3) Use The Surrounding
You can utilize the environment to initiate a natural conversation. You can comment on the physical items around you, the temperature, the weather, the atmosphere, or any event that is happening right now.
- I like rainy days like this. It is very relaxing and great for a nap.
- I like the background piano music. It’s very relaxing, just like Yiruma’s Kiss The Rain. Have you heard that before?
- You come to the library often? I didn’t know you are into reading. What kind of books do you like to read?
4) Ask What If Questions
You can ask hypothetical questions to initiate a casual and random conversation.
Girls like this kind of What-if question because they like to imagine things that have never happen. I’m just kidding. People love to talk about it mainly because it’s fun and creative.
- If the profession you love can’t earn you a good living, will you still do it?
- If your life partner is a control freak, what would you do?
- If someone you love is diagnosed with cancer and only has 3 months to live, will you choose to tell him the truth?
- If you are in love with your best friend’s crush, what would you do?
You can choose to explore whatever you want as long as the other person is comfortable about it. For example, you can explore their hobbies, what they like to do when they are not studying, their secret talent, etc.
- What is your favorite way to waste time?
- Do you have a pet before? Are you a dog person or a cat person?
- What kind of books do you love to read? What is your favorite quote?
6) Give Compliments
Whenever your friends impressed you or made some positive changes, you can give them genuine praise. You can praise them on their behavior, talent, achievement, and appearance.
- I heard you have just won the public speaking competition. You are so awesome, man.
- Wow, I like your new haircut. It makes you look cuter than ever.
- I never know you are so good with a guitar. That’s impressive! Can I get your signature, please? hahaha.
7) Offer Help Or Gifts
You can offer help whenever you see fit. For example, if you go out for lunch and your friend is busy working on her assignment, you can ask her if she needs anything like a sandwich or coffee as light refreshment.
On the other hand, if you have snacks or candies, you can offer them to your friend. I do this often when I was in college because the class is boring as f, and we need it to keep awake.
Most of my friends will take it from me, and I ask them to pass it further to their friends sitting around them. Then, the next time when I introduce myself, they would say they have already known me. It makes the introduction session so much easier.
- Want some mentos? Well, pass it around.
- I brought some candies. You want some?
- I’m going to grab a drink. You need anything?
Conversation Starters For College Students
I have compiled some good conversation starters for you below. They are practical to be used in the college environment.
You can pick a few which resonate with you and start talking to people around you in college.
Conversation Starters In College:
- Do you have the schedule? What’s up next?
- Are you living on or off-campus?
- How’s the dorm’s life?
- I missed that. Can I see your notes?
- Have you finished your assignment?
- Want some snacks?
- What are you going to present later?
- What made you choose this college?
- What do you do when you are not studying?
- Are you into any kind of sports?
- What’s your favorite way to waste time?
- Are you ready for the upcoming exam?
- Where are you going for lunch later?
- How do you solve these questions?
- What is your favorite book?
- Have you watched the latest movie?
- Who is your favorite singer?
- Which community have you joined?
- What is your dream?
- What makes you happy?
- What’s your plan for the weekend?
- What is your favorite subject? Why do you love it?
- How will you spend your summer/holidays?
- What extracurricular activities are you thinking of joining?
- What inspired you to pursue your major?
- How do you keep yourself motivated?
- What’s your plan after graduating?
- Where is your hometown?
- I’m going to the library/concert/party later. Do you want to join me?
How To Make More Friends In The College
Method#1: Study Group
I prefer to study alone because I find that more efficient. However, when I was in college, I still joined some study groups because it’s more fun, and I can get to know more people.
Most of the student likes to study in the hall in groups. There’s a high chance that one of your study group members will know the member from the other study group. So, when they meet up and talk to each other, I will find an opportunity to introduce myself and get to know that person too.
When I pass by the new friend’s study group, I will exchange a few words with him and know his other group members.
This is very efficient to know new people in groups. You can try it yourself.
Method#2: Group Assignment
Group assignment is an excellent way to bond with your coursemates. All of you will spend a lot of time together to complete the project on hand.
On the other hand, you can talk to the other group and ask them how’s their progress. This way, you will get to know new people inside and outside of your group.
Usually, when you know a new person in a different group, you have the opportunity to know all his group members too. It works just like the study group method above.
Method#3: Join A Club Or Community
Explore what is your passion by joining clubs or community that seems interesting to you.
Most of these communities have ranks or positions, but not everyone wants to take up the role due to their responsibility. You can find a few good communities and volunteer yourself to become board members.
This way, you will be able to befriend all the board members, and with higher authority, you can get to know all the community members quickly. This is an excellent way to make more friends in college.
Method#4: Join College Events
Don’t miss out whenever there’s an exciting event going on in your college.
Join some of the musical event, party, career fair, competition, or festival celebration that is happening in your college. Then, at this event, you can make some new friends too.
Method#5: Take Part In Sports/Workout
Even if you are not into sports, I would suggest you invest in at least 1 sport.
This is because participating in sports not only makes you healthier and happier, but it also makes you more attractive and charismatic. People are keener to make friends with you if you have that sunshine image.
Method#6: Eat Together
Invite your friends to eat together for lunch and dinner. While eating, all of you can have some fun conversations with each other.
If you are not sure what to talk about, you can talk about personality, relationships, or travel stories. These are all fun topics you can discuss with your friends.
Whenever there’s a new cafe around, you can invite your friends to explore it together too.
Method#7: Gaming Together
I’m into board games. So, I have a group of boardgames members. We often play together on Saturday night until midnight. That’s the time we update each other on what has happened around us lately. Sometimes, some members will bring new faces along, and that’s how I get to know new people.
You can look into video games if boardgames are not your thing.
How To Overcome Anxiety To Start A Conversation In College
Most people are suffering from anxiety because they care too much about how others would think about them.
This fear of rejection or judgment then refrains them from an honest expression of thoughts and opinions. They end up not being able to be themselves, and they find it struggles to have a fun conversation with others.
The best way to deal with this challenge is to inject a correct mindset about conversation into yourself.
The conversation is always about exploration and not so much about making everyone like you. Your goal is to find out who is compatible with you and has the potential to become your good friends.
You just have to be yourself and speak like how you usually talk with your existing friends. If they like the way you speak, they will stay and become your new friends.
On the other hand, if they do not resonates well with you, then there’s no point in keeping them and make both of you suffer from the relationship. You should just let them go.
If you think in this way, you will never be afraid of judgment again. You will be able to talk to others naturally and attract people who can resonate well with you to become your friends.
The Bottom Line On How To Start A Conversation In College
Most people in college are like you, they want to make new friends too. So, you should not overthink when you want to get to know a person.
Just drop a “Hi” and introduce yourself, and you will be surprised that most people are more than happy to expand the conversation with you.
Enjoy each conversation you have, and if you do not like the person, you can always choose to end it in your hand.