Category Archives: study skills

posts related to how to work effectively and in college

Preparing for Finals

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Feel like there’s so much to do in a really short amount of time?  Here’s how you can take stock and prepare a plan of action to make it through finals.

Step one:

Visit http://lap.appstate.edu/effective-study-skills to find a four-page final exam planning packet. Print it out—even if you have a wonderful digital calendar or system, use this paper copy as a planning and thinking tool– and as a road map for the final weeks of the semester.

Step two:

Write down the times of your finals for each class you’re in.

Step three:

Go through each syllabus and record all remaining deadlines and tasks. Review your class notes in case you recorded any deadlines and important notes there, too.

Step four:

Break large assignments into smaller steps. Be sure to identify any questions you might have for your professors so you can ask them now.  Make sure you understand what is expected for every major test and project.  Attend every class—hints and insights will be shared every day that will boost your success.

Step five: 

Strive to take care of yourself for this final phase—get enough sleep, make healthy choices in nutrition, and save time to exercise. Your mind is connected to the rest of your body. Communicate with friends, roommates, and family members that this month is particularly challenging, and you may not have as much free time as usual.

Step six:

Whittle away at each project or major test. Try to spend a little time with each one every day—reviewing is more effective (and more motivating!) if you spread it out over time.

Yes, the final days of the semester do require a lot of time studying.  Break will be here before you know it. Plan now to end this semester on a strong note!

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Skipping Class: A Major Predictor of Failing Class

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Did you know that skipping class is the best predictor that you’ll flunk?  So even if you don’t feel bad wasting your tuition dollars (or the taxpayers’ dollars) when you skip class, you probably ought to attend class regularly just so you don’t flunk out.

When I spoke with some academic advisors, they said that students who are on academic probation because of bad grades routinely attribute the problem to not attending class.

While it can be tempting to skip class when you’re feeling down, keep in mind that once you’re there you’re part of a learning community that might just lift your spirits. I mean, will it really help things to stay in your dorm under the covers feeling sad and blue?

Moreover, once a student starts to skip class they can end up too embarrassed to show up and start trying again, thereby starting a vicious cycle they might not get out of.  If you’ve already missed too many meetings of a class (or classes), DON’T GIVE UP– SHOW UP!

The End is Near! How to Prepare for Finals

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The end is near! Feel like there’s so much to do in a really short amount of time?  Here’s how you can take stock and prepare a plan of action to make it through finals.

Step one:

Visit http://lap.appstate.edu/effective-study-skills to find a four-page final exam planning packet. Print it out—even if you have a wonderful digital calendar or system, use this paper copy as a planning and thinking tool– and as a road map for the final weeks of the semester.

Step two:

Write down the times of your finals for each class you’re in. Visit http://www.registrar.appstate.edu/calendar/Fall2014ExamSchedule.html for details.

Step three:

Go through each syllabus and record all remaining deadlines for the next three weeks. Review your class notes in case you recorded any deadlines there, too.

Step four:

Break large assignments into smaller steps. Be sure to identify any questions you might have for your professors so you can ask them now. Make sure you understand what is expected for every major test and project.  Attend every class—hints and insights will be shared every day that will boost your success.

Step five:

Strive to take care of yourself for this final phase—get enough sleep, make healthy choices in nutrition, and save time to exercise. Your mind is connected to the rest of your body. Communicate with friends, roommates, and family members that this month is particularly challenging, and you may not have as much free time as usual.

Step six:

Whittle away at each project or major test. Try to spend a little time with each one every day—reviewing is more effective (and more motivating! if you spread it out over time.

Yes, the final weeks of the semester do require a lot of time studying.  Break will be here before you know it. Plan now to end this semester on a strong note!

Have a Nice Education

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It’s time for freshmen and new transfer students to complete the required survey online on the MAP-Works website, and then view their individualized Student Outcome Reports.

Why do you have to take this 10-minute survey about your courses, roommate situation, and overall experience at Appalachian? Because the University tries to help new students succeed and this survey tool is a way we check in with you. We’ve already recruited you to get your education at Appalachian. Now we want you to succeed here and have a good experience.

Students who complete the survey have said (in conversation, focus groups, and scholarship applications) that they found their MAP-Works survey-taking experience helpful because:
– It was a wakeup call;
– It helped them change some of their study habits; and
– It offered helpful advice to turn a bad college experience into a good one.

The survey opened to students on September 10, 2014.  You should have received an email with your personal link to the survey.

OK, so go on, take 10 minutes to complete the survey.  You can access it online at:
www.appstate.map-works.com