How to Succeed Academically in College

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

I would say a pretty common fear for incoming college freshman is doing well in your classes. I remember my teachers in high school saying how much harder classes in college would be and since I'm the oldest child of my family, I didn't have an older brother or sister to give me insight on what classes would be like so I wanted to share some of my tips with y'all!

I would not necessarily say that college classes are crazily harder than high school (especially if you took multiple AP courses) but they are just different. In college, you have a few classes a day for a few hours and then the rest of the day free in comparison to high school when you had 6-7 hours of class a day. College is a lot less busy work than high school but is all very manageable, especially if you prepare yourself!

Go to office hours
Professors have office hours to help out their students and it is definitely worth it to go to extra clarification or help. I've received extra credit for going to office hours before so that's just an extra benefit! Plus, if the class is on the larger side, this can help your professor put a face to the name that appears on various assignments and exams.

Study with friends in the class
I am definitely lucky because Elementary Education at Clemson is a smaller major (only 50 students per grade level) so I know the majority of people in my classes, which makes things easier. I honestly do not think I would of survived my Geography class last semester if it weren't for my friends who were in it with me as we would all get together to study, which is beneficial as someone probably has the answer to any of your questions and it makes studying a bit more enjoyable!

Start early
Procrastinating does not make your studying any easier and adds extra stress to it. I recommend starting big assignments earlier than you need to so that you can put the extra effort into it and create the best work you can! I do study the best the night before but I will work on a study guide or Quizlet before that so I'm a little more prepared.

Find your most productive study spot
I realized my freshman year that I do not study well in my own room as I get distracted my what my friends around me are doing or I want to eat all the snacks I have (lol). I personally work best in the library or in Starbucks. Some of my friends, however, despise the library and work better in their own room. Experiment the first month or two to find the study spot that works best for you as you'll be able to be so much more productive there.

Use an agenda
If you read this blog post, you saw that most of my friends commented on my love for my agenda. It truly keeps my life together as I write down everything going on (classes, sorority commitments, meetings, etc.) as well as my to-do list. This helps me manage my time as if I see that Thursday, for example, is a busy day, I'll try to get more work done before then to prepare. It also helps me plan time to hang out with friends, eat, workout, etc. I use a Day Designer agenda and it's definitely pricy but so worth it!

Stay on top of your email inbox/Canvas
Clemson uses Canvas so I try to check that fairly often so I can stay up-to-date on due dates and things of that nature. I also check my email pretty often so I don't miss anything going on! Doing this ensures that I never miss a deadline as I'm able to add it to my calendar and properly prepare!

Any other tips on how to succeed in college? Let me know in the comments!

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