Academic Success Tips
Studying is critical to academic success in college. As a college student, you will be asked to apply knowledge, make connections, and draw conclusions. Memorizing information will not always be the most effective means of studying. So, you need to engage in your learning. Therefore, you need to engage in your learning by being prepared to learn inside and outside of the classroom. That includes preparing for class, participating in class, and reviewing information outside of class. Here are a few tips:
- If a professor gives a reading assignment...read it! Therefore, when the professor is discussing the topics, it will clarify the information, serve as a review and help you remember the information.
- When reading, highlight the information that seems important to you. Before highlighting something, think about why you feel the information is essential, and don't be afraid to check the summary at the end of the chapter or learning objectives to see if you are on target. Too often, students will overwhelm themselves by highlighting everything and don’t discriminate between what is deemed important.
- Write notes in the margins of the pages.
- Put your cell phone away so that it is not a distraction.
- Listen to the lecture and find ways to connect information to previous learning.
- Take notes on the main points of the lecture.
- Ask meaningful questions.
- Review your notes. Rewriting your notes is also extremely helpful. The more you write something down, the easier it is to recall it at a later date.
Additional Study Tips
- Schedule time to study in your planner.
- When you are reading, find a quiet comfortable location for studying. You may want to try different locations to see how it affects your ability to study.
- Put your cell phone away (so you are not distracted with texts, emails and phone calls).
As college students, you are juggling a lot...going to class, studying, working, attending meetings, spending time with friends and family, and so on. To stay on top of everything, you need to manage your time...but how? Here are a few tips to help:
USE A PLANNER: A planner provides an organized method to keep track of everything you need to complete. You can use a paper planner or an electronic planner (which can be retrieved on your cell phone).
Schedule it! Put everything into your planner:
- Your class assignments and test dates, are both listed on your course syllabi.
- Classes, work, studying, club meetings, time with friends and family, appointments, etc.
- Schedule “me time:” this includes naps, exercise, reading a book, whatever you do for relaxation.
- Review your planner at the beginning of the semester to identify when you have commitments for the semester. Once you see the big picture, you can plan accordingly.
- Review your planner the night before to set priorities for the next day.
- Learn to say NO - don’t allow other things or people to get in the way of what is most important.
- There are many reasons why you shouldn’t wait until the last minute to study or complete an assignment. Here are a couple reasons:
- By cramming, you will not retain the knowledge.
- You may wait until the last minute to study or work on a paper, but life happens. Computers and printers break down, the internet isn’t working, you get the flu...the list can go on and on. Be prepared for the unexpected!
Go to every class, sit near the front of the room and take every class seriously.
Check your PennWest California email daily! This is the primary method of communication between you and the University, professors, and other students.