Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Mid-Term Check-In

Congratulations!  You survived through the first 8 weeks or so of your first semester in college.  How did you fare?  Did you hit the ground running and take charge of your courses and activities?  Did you find a way to make it happen, but know you could do better?  Do you feel like college is a run away train and you are holding on for dear life?

Regardless of how your semester started, there are ways to finish strong!  There are some very simple strategies that will help.  Here goes . . .

  • Go to class.  Be there physically and mentally.
  • Prepare for class ahead of time by completing all assigned reading.
  • Ask questions for clarification.  (If you have a question, so does someone else.)
  • Take notes.  If your instructor is writing, you should be writing as well.  Put comments in the margins if you need to.
  • Review your notes after class.
  • Begin each assignment when it's given, regardless of the due date.
  • Ask more questions (of your instructor/TA/tutor/friends) when you don't understand.
Now, some of you are saying "I do all that and I'm still not making the grade."  What I suggest for you is a more in-depth session with your academic or program adviser.  There are people on every campus who specialize in easing the freshman transition to college.  Find this person on your campus and make regular appointments.  Do what they advise you to do until you notice a change.  Then, keep doing it.

The semester is at least half way over.  You can make it through the other half.  I promise.