How to Survive the Academic Jungle

College Academic Survival Guide

Choosing your course work
Registering
1.) First make a list of your requirements to graduate. Then make a list of all your requirements outside the academic world. The first list will let you know how many classes and which classes you need to take to graduate. The second list will let you know the actual study and class time you can fit in. For example if you have to work a full time job to afford school, but also have to be a full time student, because of financial aid you can probably only take the minimum full time hours (12 hours).
2.) Registration – Visit your advisor before registration day. Make two plans for your class schedule. One with course you want and the other will back ups incase they are full.
3.) Arrive early to registration, so you are first in line and get the classes you want. You can also go the last hour to wait less, but the chances of getting the classes you need and want are slim.
4.) Online registration – If your college offers online registration, this is the way to go. No lines, but remember to get up and register as soon as you can that day.
5.) Class schedule – If possible don’t do back to back classes. Give yourself a break. Grab a snack and review notes from the previous class or study for an upcoming quiz in your next class.
Courses and Studying
1.) First day of class – Leave the class knowing what is expected of you all semester. Review the syllabus; know what assignments are due when. Get an overall feel for how much studying time you need each week for this class. If you have any questions talk to your professor immediately.
2.) Find a study buddy – This always helps. Another person you meet with regularly to study with can keep you motivated and can help you understand the more difficult subjects. If you work better alone, that is also o.k., but remember if the subject is difficult go and see the professor immediately with any questions.
3.) The best times to study are right before and after a class.
4.) Find a quiet place without distraction to study.
5.) Make sure you eat a healthy and balanced diet and are well hydrated. You need to be healthy in order to work at your full academic potential
6.) Introduce yourself to your professor. Make sure he or she knows who you are and that you work hard. Sometimes in the case of borderline grades this can help.
7.) Study Time – Should be at the same time and place each day. This helps establish consistency in your studying habits.
8.) Read each assignment, take notes, make notes about what you don’t understand, and finally asked questions next class or go visit the professor and get clarity on the confusing material.
9.) If necessary re-read material.
10.) In sciences and math, reworked problems until they become second nature.
11.) Use on campus resources – Library, labs, tutors, etc.
12.) Study the hardest subjects first, so that you are more alert and can fully concentrate.
13.) If possible study during the day, it takes more concentration to study at night. If you are a night person that is o.k. too, but remember generally it takes twice as long to concentrate on something at night. Plan your time accordingly.
14.) Take breaks – If you frustrated or just need a breather it is o.k. to take a quick five minute break.
15.) Get enough sleep – To often college students cut their sleep time short, this is the worst thing they can do. You need sleep to function and not getting enough is like running on empty.

These steps should help any college student succeed. Collegiate academic success can be hard and demanding, but with these tips and perseverance anyone can succeed.

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