|Professor Alex Jones (Harvard Kennedy School) giving a lecture about the role of media in social change. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
There's just no avoiding it, college is hard. You have to choose a school and a program. You have to decide on a major. You have to work out how you're going to pay for tuition, find a place to live and get your books. If all of that isn't enough for you, now you have to do the hard part, THE WORK!
If I haven't scared you away yet, you're probably wondering how to succeed in college. Don't worry, I've got your back, here are ten excellent tips to help you succeed in college.
1. Use the Force
If you have made it this far, you must have a strong desire to get your degree. In other words, you hold the force! Use your dreams and goals as motivation to keep you going. With homework and late nights studying you may begin to question why you're doing what you're doing. If you ever get to this point (which I am afraid you will), take a step back and remember why you are doing what you are doing. Constantly remind yourself that YOU and only YOU are in charge of your future.
2. Don't Settle
You may have had to settle on a date to the prom in high school. You may have to settle for tuna when you want grilled cheese. But you never, ever, have to settle on a professor. This is a common mistake that students make these days. You are in charge of your education; you're paying for it aren't you? Make the most of it! If you after a few classes you find that you don't like you professor, or you feel like you're not going to get much out of the class, TRANSFER. There are also many tools out there available to students that allow them to research and rate professors. Put these resources to use and make the most out of college.
3. GO TO CLASS
Seems self explanatory doesn't it? Going to class is important for sure. But, you would be surprised how many students just don't go to class. Most college professors don't enforce attendance policies, and neither do the schools. So staying in bed can be way too easy. Get yourself to class every time and you will notice a huge difference.
4. Retrain Your Brain
Today, with iPods, phones, and laptops information and entertainment are constantly at our fingertips. Since we've become used to this luxury, it can be hard to sit through a lecture and pay attention. If you want to succeed in school, it's time to retrain your attention span. Force yourself to pay attention and take notes, and you'll do better.
5. Actually do Your Homework
Novel idea isn't it? But really, set a time for studying. Remove distractions, friends, and roommates and get to the grindstone. A good rule of thumb to use is for every one hour of class add 2 hours of study time.
6. Answer Questions the Right Way
I know, this one seems kind of dumb, but it is actually very important. Most professors complain these days about how students don't seem to answer the questions they pose fully or accurately. If you don't understand the question, ask. Take your time to answer and be detailed.
7. Take Your Test, Then Re-Take Your Test
Once you get a study guide from your professor, it is helpful to make yourself a pre-test. Take the test that you've made and correct it. This will help you prepare for the test. Take the test. Once you get your test back, look over the answers that you got wrong and figure out the right answer. This will get you ready for your final.
8. Take Advantage of Your Professor
Most students don't realize that their professors are there to help them learn. Your professor wants you to succeed. Most professors are required to be in their on campus office for at least 4 hours a week. This office time is for you! If you have a question about an assignment or you need help, take advantage of your professor and his or her office time and put it to use.
9. Get Your Feet Wet
There are a lot of college counselors out there that will strongly encourage you to choose you're major right away. However, it is a better idea to start with a few classes before you decide on a major. You need to get into school and get your feet wet. Try new things, rediscover yourself and find what makes you happy. Once you've found your dream field, then you can decide on a major. Otherwise you may think you want one thing, and find that you don't.
10. Stay Happy
With all the hard work that goes in to earning your college degree there is one thing that remains the most important. YOUR DREAM. If you feel tired and down trodden and don't want to go to school anymore it can help to remember why you are there and what you love. Take some fun classes once in a while to boost creativity and your spirits.
Georgia Potter is an author of many educational articles. As a student herself she strives to find quality information to help other students survive college.She writes about Online Colleges and Online Degree Programs.
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