How to Survive College in 10 Steps
- Move closer to the front.
- Focus your attention.
- Evaluate what you hear.
- Ask questions if you don’t understand something.
2) Take Notes:
- Record the speaker's main points in your own words. Don't try to write down everything that's said.
- Listen for key words that tell you what's important ("The major cause was...," "The 4 main steps...," etc.)
- Copy all information written on the board.
3) Review Your Notes:
- Highlight the points that seem most important.
- Go over your notes at least once a week, this helps keep information fresh in your mind.
- Be prepared and willing to take part in class discussion.
- Share your thoughts and ideas, but don't dominate the entire discussion.
- Ask questions.
- Summarize in your own words what's been said.
- Be polite and respect others, even if you disagree.
5) Budget Your Time Wisely:
- Use a planning notebook or calender to track when all assignments are due.
- Write down all your regular activities (classes, a part-time job, meals, practice with a team or musical group, etc).
- Allow time for sleep, fun and fitness.
- Schedule review time for before or after each class, if you can.
- Try to study the same subject at the same time each day.
- Plan time for exams and major projects. Break up these big jobs into small steps (i.e. step #1 find sources; Step #2. take notes).
6) Find a Good Study Space:
- Choose a quiet, well-lit place that's free of distractions (telephone, television, etc). For example, the library is an ideal place to study.
- Gather all the materials you need before you begin.
- Try to study in the same place each day. Use that place for studying only.
7) Be a Better Reader:
- Eliminate habits that can slow you down.
- Don't move your lips, "say" words in your mind, or point your finger.
- Train your eyes to take in larger groups of words with each glance.
- Skim material if you're looking for the answers to a specific question.
- Slow down when you are reading technical material.
- Use a dictionary to learn definitions, synonyms and antonyms.
- Learn prefixes, suffixes, and roots of words. (Ask a librarian for books to help you)
- Use new words that you learn.
- Check out speech-reading courses.
- Preview the material. For example, if you're assigned a chapter in a textbook, read:
- The chapter title and introduction.
- Headings, subheadings, and topic sentences
- Boldfaced and italicized words.
- The chapter summary and any review questions.
- As you read:
- Pay special attention to main ideas and supporting details.
- Examine graphs, charts and illustrations.
- Evaluate the material. (Do you understand what you're reading? Does the material answer your questions about the subject?)
- Underline or highlight key points.
- Make an outline.
- After you read:
- Write a summary in your own words.
- Think about what you've learned. Sum up the material in your own words. This can make it easier to remember the material.
- Note any points you don't understand or any questions you'd like to ask your professor.
8) Prepare for Exams:
- Ask your professor what you can expect on the test.
- Ask if there is a study guide.
- If no study guide is available, make your own.
- Study with fellow classmates.
- Use flash cards to write down important information to test yourself over.
- Re-read chapters you will be tested over.
- Study the notes you have taken during class.
9) Focus on Exam Day:
- Read the instructions carefully.
- Scan the test quickly to find out how much time you can spend on each section or question.
- Answer the easy questions first, then the hard ones.
- Pay close attention to all qualifiers ("usually," "none," "always," etc.)
- Write neatly.
- Read all the answers carefully before you choose one (for multiple choice questions).
- On the essay portion of exams:
- Note key words, such as "discuss," "explain" and "compare."
- Briefly outline the major points you intend to cover.
- Use facts and specific examples to support your answer(s).
- Proofread your essay.
10) Attend Every Class!!!