Understand the class syllabus
- Understand the objective of the course.
- Make notes of material you will need for the class and be sure you have access to them.
- Know when all assignments and exams are due and note them on your calendar (possibly including a note in the previous week also.)
- Understand the grading policy and procedures. Note late-work penalties and Academic Honesty policies.
Prepare for each class
- Read in your textbook (or other resources) before you go to class.
- Note for topic for discussion and read that section of your book.
- Take special note of the introduction and objectives for the chapter.
- Read carefully the headings, subheadings, bold and italics print, and captions under pictures, figures, and tables.
- Read the summary or conclusion.
- Read the questions and study materials at the end of the chapters.
- Now read the chapter and use your preview of the chapter to read for meaning.
- Turn the headings into questions.
- Take notes in the margins of the chapters.
- Talk the concepts through, either aloud or silently.
- After you finish reading, review.
- Answer the questions at the end of the chapter.
- Write down everything that you can remember from your reading and then review what you can't remember.
- Make note cards or a list of key terms and concepts.
Take notes during class
- If you are given an outline for the lecture, fill it in with details.
- If you have been given a copy of the power-point, use your highlighter to mark important items and a pen/pencil to add important points.
- Use your note-taking as a way to carry on a dialogue with the professor. Having a "conversation" in your mind with the professor and actively taking notes will help you stay alert and attentive in class.
- Don't be afraid to ask questions. Keep the question on task.
- Keep in mind, after reading through the chapter you may find you don't need to write as much down - you can find it easily in the book.
Review your notes as soon as you can after class.
- Make corrections.
- Clarify your ideas.
- Make of list of questions that you find the answers to in the textbook or that you ask the professor.
- After you review the notes from today's class, review and study the notes from the last three classes.
Study outside of class
- Plan to study at least two hours outside of class for every hour you spend inside of class. For example, if you have a three-hour class, you should plan to spend six hours study time outside of the class time per week.
- Schedule study time into your daily routine.
- Be aware of the best time of day for you to study.
Use a regular study area. Consider the following when selecting a study area:
- Make sure there is good lighting.
- The study area should be free of distractions. You may need to find a different place other than your residence hall room. If you must study in your room, turn off the TV or stereo. Turn off your cell phone. Post a do not disturb sign on your door.
- Don't get too comfortable. Lying on the bed would not be a good idea if you have trouble staying awake when you study.
- Consider places around campus you can go - residence hall study room, residence hall lounge, library, learning or writing center, Eyrie café, or some other place where you are comfortable and won't be distracted.