The 10 Step College Survival Guide

Step One: Impress your professor

impress your professor

Impress your professor by attending class each and every day, do not be late and do not make procrastination a habit. Try to attend your professor’s office hours, especially for classes in your major, even if you are not struggling in their class. These professors may later write your recommendation letter, advocate on your behalf, or recommend you for your first job. And always remember to put 110% effort into your coursework each and every day.

 

Step Two: Perfect your time-management skills

perfect your time management skills

Plan, plan, and plan again. Schedule your time each day and keep daily check-lists to keep yourself on track. Prioritize your assignments by importance and due date. Limit any distractions and remain on task in order to optimize your study time.

 

Step Three: Become familiar with academic resources

become familiar with academic resources

Take advantage of free tutorial sessions and group study sessions. Familiarize yourself with important resources such as Career Centers, Writing Centers, and Math Labs. Another important resource is your academic advisor. Your academic advisor can help plan out your four years of college courses and make recommendations for working towards a specific career.

 

Step Four: Become involved and be social

become involved and be social

Keep your dorm room door open to invite visitors and be friendly. Consider attending campus sporting games and events to meet new people. You could also consider joining an organization that matches your interests (student government, leadership, or service oriented). Not only is this a great way to make friends but your involvement looks great on your resumé! Another way to become involved is to join a sorority or fraternity and GO GREEK!

 

Step Five: Share, rent, or search book prices

cheap textbooks

Shop responsibly and consider all of your options. If your roommate or friend is in the same course consider sharing the costs of the book and scheduling when each person may use the book. Consider taking advantage of Amazon’s discounted rate to students for an amazon prime membership. Another suggestion is to consider renting textbooks through Amazon to save a chunk of change.

 

Step Six: Avoid the Freshman 15

eat a healthy diet

All you can eat cafeterias seem like the best thing ever until it catches up with you. Try to eat a balanced meal and avoid overeating. Have fun and cook meals yourself in order to save money and avoid unnecessary calories. Healthy eating is important to receive proper nutrients in order to stay focused and alert while studying. You can also consider consuming brain food prior to tests and exams. Some potential brain foods include blueberries, nuts, and avocados.

 

Step Seven: Get organized

get organized

This goes hand-in-hand with being prepared. Always attend class prepared with all of your supplies and an attentive mind. Get a weekly planner and use it religiously. Create and maintain a tidy and organized study space, complete with everything you need when you’re working. Also, remember to backup all of your computer files on a flash drive in case something accidentally gets deleted or your dog eats your homework.

 

Step Eight: Take good notes

take good notes

Try to find a system that works well for you and keep it consistent and uniform. Learn to recognize the important information by focusing on nonverbal and verbal cues by your professor. For example, if the professor repeats something, writes it down, raises their voice, or speaks slowly these are all indicators for important information. Also, try to keep your notes legible and consider reading them over that same day to increase retention.

 

Step Nine: Study smart

study smart

Find your perfect study space that complements your learning style. Try to study your more difficult material first when you are alert and focused. Also, bear in mind that contacting students in your classes to create a group study session can be a helpful tool.

 

Step Ten: Pursue your passion

pursue your passion

Select a major that matches your career aspirations and not the aspirations of others. Ask professors about research opportunities within your interests to become acquainted. And do not lose sight of your goals amongst the distractions of college life and stay true to yourself.

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