First Year Transition

Group of Students

If you are looking to be successful on campus, the following is a list of helpful tips.

  1. Whenever possible, study in a location other than places where you sleep, eat, or play.
    • Why? It is too tempting to take a nap, watch TV, surf the Internet, and procrastinate at home.
  2. Study in the library or classrooms whenever possible.
    • Why? The third (top) floor is the QUIET floor and there are study rooms on the third floor.
    • Classrooms are great for learning and recall of the information you learned there.
  3. If applicable, pick up lunch at the Pioneer Crossing (PSC) and eat in the library.
    • Why? Students can eat and drink in the library; knock out a quick hour of studying while eating!
  4. Utilize an interactive note taking strategy (e.g. Cornell Note taking or note cards/flash cards)!
    • Why? Activity reduces daydreaming and visualizing helps students remember information.
  5. Highlight key topics and concepts while reading textbooks and notes.
    • Why? It is ok to highlight with a yellow highlighter and make notes in pencil in textbooks.
  6. Try to study without looking at your e-mail or cell phone for at least 30–60 minutes/day.
    • Why? It takes time to retrieve/respond to messages, so homework and studying will take longer.
  7. When you can, review/read/study notes immediately before and after class. Review the notes OFTEN.
    • Why? Cramming before an exam is not effective—the notes may not make sense anymore, students get stressed about the amount of notes/material to review/learn, etc.
  8. Get a tutor early if/when the course is going to be extremely difficult.
  9. Go see professors during office hours at least once/semester (the syllabus lists office hours and location).
    • Why? A visit shows a student cares. Simply ask: “What are tips to be successful in your class?”
  10. Record ALL due dates, quiz dates, and exam dates in your planner at the beginning of the semester.
    • Why? Every Sunday, look ahead at the next two weeks and plan for the busy days.
  11. Study 30-45 hours/week.
    • Why? The job market is competitive, so strive for an excellent GPA!
  12. Use campus resources!
    • Why? Many resources are FREE. The Pioneer Academic and Transitional Help (PATH) Center can provide a resource list.
  13. Go to the WATR (Writing and Tutoring Resource Center) to work on papers and speeches!
    • Why? The WATR has a computer lab; students can get 1:1 assistance, write, and print for FREE.
  14. Try working on math homework in the Algebra Skill Center (ASC) or Math Learning Center (MLC)
    • Why?
      1. The ASC staff will help Math 10 and Math 15 students with Math XL in the lab (third floor Brigham Hall).
      2. The MLC (360 Gardner Hall) has tutors waiting to help students in College Algebra, Elementary Statistics, and other advanced math classes.
  15. Do not hesitate to seek assistance from the staff in the Pioneer Academic and Transitional Help Center
    • Why? Time and money are valuable! Staff from PATH can help students plan for college SUCCEESS!

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