10 Tips to surviving college:
- Try not to schedule back-to-back classes.
- Attend the first day of class.
- Know what is expected from your classes.
- Establish a place to study and a routine time.
- Do as much of your studying as you can during the day time.
- Find study partners in your classes and form study groups.
- Make use of study resources on campus.
- Schedule breaks.
- Study the hardest subject first.
- Listen to your body (studying on an empty stomach is a waste of time).
Effective study skills
The value of a schedule
Before you even begin to think about the process of studying, you must develop a schedule. If you don’t have a schedule or plan for studying, then you will not have any way of allocating your valuable time when the unexpected comes up. A good, well thought out schedule can be a lifesaver. It’s up to you to learn how develop a schedule that meets your needs, revise it if necessary, and most important, follow it.
A schedule saves time
All schedules should be made with the idea that they can be revised. A good schedule keeps you from wandering off course. A good schedule, if properly managed, assigns time where time is needed, but you’ve got to want to do it!
Making every hour count
A schedule should take into account every class, laboratory, lecture, social event, and other work in which you engage. There are givens such as classes and so on that have to be incorporated. You must focus on the other “free time” available and how you will use it. Make a weekly schedule and block off the 24 hour day in one hour increments. Indicate times for classes, labs, lectures, social, and work time. Also block off a period for sleeping each day. With what is left over, plan time for study. This gives you a rough road map of the time available. Of course, you can revise your schedule as circumstances warrant.
When to study
The problem of when to study is critical. A good rule of thumb is that studying should be carried out only when you are rested, alert, and have planned for it. Last minute studying just before a class is usually a waste of time.
Studying for lecture courses
If your study period is before the lecture class, be sure you have read all the assignments and made notes on what you don’t understand. If the study period is after the lecture class, review the notes you took during class while the information is still fresh.
Studying for recitation courses
For classes that require recitation, such as foreign language, be sure to schedule a study period just before the class. Use the time to practice. Sometimes, practice with others can help sharpen your skills in a before-class study period.
Making and revising a schedule
Don’t be afraid to revise your schedule. Schedules are really plans for how you intend to use your time. If your schedule doesn’t work, revise it. You must understand that your schedule is to help you develop good study habits. Once you have developed them, schedule building becomes easier.
Many college students find working while attending college can quickly become a harsh reality. You need to figure out how to balance a job with everything else you have going on. Scheduling becomes very important.
There are basically two types of jobs – on-campus and off-campus. On-campus employment will take your class schedule into account when they schedule you to work. Working on campus eliminates a commute. Check with your student employment office for open positions. Many colleges offer work in your field of study, which could be invaluable. Some campus jobs come with perks – food, entertainment, etc. If you are eligible for the Federal Work-Study program, go to your financial aid office to find out how to take advantage of this opportunity. These jobs can be on-campus and off-campus and are usually at a non-profit organization or public agency. Flexible hours are usually available.
Interested in student employment at NMSU? Visit Student Employment!