Students making the transition from high school to university often encounter many stressors and new experiences. Many students adjust successfully to university; however, some students do not, often resulting in attrition from the university and mental health issues. The primary aim of the current study was to examine the effects that optimism, self-efficacy, depression, and anxiety have on an individual's life stress and adaptation to university. Eighty-four first-year, full-time students from the Queensland University of Technology (60 female, 24 male) who had entered university straight from high school completed the study. Participants completed a questionnaire assessing their levels of optimism, self-efficacy, depression, anxiety, perceived level of life stress and adaptation to university. In line with predictions, results showed that optimism, depression, and anxiety each had a significant relationship with students’ perceived level of stress. Furthermore, self-efficacy and depression had a significant relationship with adaptation to university. We conclude that students with high levels of optimism and low levels of depression and anxiety will adapt better when making the transition from high school to university. In addition, students with high levels of self-efficacy and low levels of depression will experience less life stress in their commencement year of university. The implications of this study are outlined.