Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Academic Tool Box: Um, it's week 6?!


Monday, October 1
On behalf of the staff and instructors, congratulations!  You’ve officially made it to week six of classes.  Some of you are sighing in relief, and others of you are thinking, “only week six?”  Whether you know it or not, the rest of the semester is going to fly by in a bustle of activity, projects, papers, and tests.  Think about it.  We are only three weeks away from midterms, and then it’s a turkey dinner (don't forget leftovers) and sleigh ride into final exams. 

DO NOT PANIC!

Use these upcoming weeks to organize, prepare, and find time to enjoy the experience. 

·       Grade Check – Before midterm week, you should know your grade in each class.  If you don’t know, ask your instructor.  Don’t wait until after midterms to find out you are missing assignments, or a grade was entered incorrectly. 

·        Midterm 101 – Do you know if your instructors are planning “designated” midterms, and do you know what kind?  Will it be a comprehensive test or a chapter / unit test?  Are you turning in a paper or a project?  How much of your grade is dependent upon the midterm?  If you can’t answer these questions, it’s another great opportunity to talk with your instructor.

·        Clean Out – Most students acquire a large amount of unnecessary paper by the middle of the semester.  They also realize their original method of organization has taken a huge leap into a sludge pond.  This is a great time to clean out folders, back packs, files on your flash drive, or on your mobile device.  Cleaning might lead to those notes you thought you’d lost from week two, and it will help you decide what to keep for upcoming assignments and tests. 

·        Don’t Waste It – whether you are taking one class at a time, or 16 credits, this is your college experience and it’s more than attending class.  Engage with peers outside of class.  Start a club or join one that is already established.  Look for opportunities to be part of the college community (check out the events page if you need ideas).  Remember, family and friends are always welcome to any activity.