5 Tips for Excelling as a College Freshman

 

Going from high school to college is a big step!  A current college student shares five tips for excelling as a freshman in college.

1. Learn to manage your time.

Classes in college are arranged differently than high school.  You will have gaps in time between classes.  Plan each day’s schedule carefully, including study time in addition to class time.

2.  Prepare before class.

Use the class syllabus to review upcoming class material. If you go to class prepared, you will get more out of the class and will save time when studying.

3.  Reflect on what you learned.

Learn how to take notes (such as Cornell notes).  Right after attending class and taking notes, write a summary of your notes, reflecting on what you learned.  How do you connect to what you learned?

4.  Find your study space.

Do you study best in a quiet environment?  Or do you do better sitting in the middle of a busy place?  Find a place you can study effectively....

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College Selection: What's in a Location & Why it is Important?

 

How do you describe where you live?  City? Suburb? Country? As you explore colleges, one thing to consider is the location of the college.  Location can make a significant impact on your college experience. Think about where you want to go to school.  

 Here are terms used in college “locations” with definitions:  

  • Major City: Population 300,000 or more: or within a 25-mile radius of a metropolitan area. 
  • Small-Medium City:  Population 75,000-299,999 or within 15-25 mile radius of its metropolitan area. 
  • Large Town: Population 25,000-74,999 or within a 10-mile radius of a large town. 
  • Small Town: Population 5,000-24,999 or within a 5-mile radius of a small town. 
  • Rural: Population under 5,000, in or near a rural community.  

How do you know what will be best for you?  Search for:  

  • Nearest airport.
  • Nearest large city.
  • Nearest outdoor experiences...
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Teacher recommendations? First some self-reflection...

 

It will soon be time to ask your teachers and your counselor for letters of recommendations. But before doing that it helps to have done some self-reflection. Think about your three favorite classes on campus. Answer the following questions about yourself and how you have performed in each class.

What have you demonstrated in class that this teacher could praise?
Describe ways you have made learning in class better. Focus on specific contributions, including:

  • Discussions
  • Presentations
  • Projects
  • Essays

What positive character traits have you displayed in this teacher’s class?
Which of the following character traits have you demonstrated in class?

  • Integrity
  • Independence
  • Initiative
  • Responsibility
  • Maturity
  • Respect
  • Perseverance
  • Attention
  • Punctuality
  • Going above expectations
  • How have you used your intellect in this teacher’s class?

Describe ways you have demonstrated your love of learning in this class. Can you describe how you have demonstrated each of these...

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How Can I Get To Know My Teachers Better?

Uncategorized Apr 12, 2018
 

How do you get to know your teachers or counselor better? Here are 3 tips to building relationships with your teachers and counselors. 

  1. Show up!  Make sure your counselor or teachers know you personally by showing up for class, for appointments and for school activities.  Drop by the teacher’s room or your counselor’s office during lunch, breaks or after school. Get to know your teachers/counselor and let them get to know you. 
  2. Speak up! Make your voice heard by asking questions in class. Share thoughts and ideas.  Be an active participant in class or on campus. Don’t be afraid to voice your thoughts or opinions.

  3. Stand out! Make yourself known. Be involved in a club or student body activity.  Each activity has a faculty advisor. Get to know that faculty advisor. It is not recommended you do everything. Pick 1-3 things you are really interested in or passionate about and commit your time and energy to those...

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Tips To Becoming A Student Athlete

 

Do you have what it takes to play sports in college? Many students do - either at the varsity level or in clubs and intramurals.  Each athletic division has their own athletic and academic eligibility requirements. More competitive divisions may want to see videos of your events.   It’s a good idea to keep a record of all your stats, awards and accomplishments.   Fill out the athletic questionnaire on each college website & call or email the athletic director/coach.  Game on! 

Varsity Sports 

  • NCAA - National Collegiate Athletic Association 
    The NCAA includes schools in Div I, Div II, and Div III.  They follow academic eligibility and recruiting rules.  Div I and Div II schools can provide athletic scholarships, but full-ride scholarships are rare. Div III schools do not offer any athletic scholarships.  But don’t rule them out.  These...
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6 Advantages to Studying in the United Kingdom

 

Have you considered studying abroad?  What if you could study abroad for your entire college experience rather than just one semester?  

There are several advantages to studying in the United Kingdom

  1. Studying in the United Kingdom could be a great way for you to experience another culture for college without worrying about a language barrier.  

  2. The UK has some of the most prestigious universities in the world - Oxford, Cambridge, and Imperial College of London all rank among the top 10 - along with over 160 colleges and universities across the country.  Just like in the U.S., you can find a university that fits your style. 

  3. Earn a bachelor’s degree in 3 years.  You can finish your bachelor’s degree in 3 years (in England, Ireland, and Wales - still 4yrs in Scotland) which means moving on to graduate school or a career sooner than at an American university.  And a 3-year degree means less...
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Size Does Matter- College Undergraduate Size

 

As you explore which colleges are the right match for you, consider the size of the student body. How many undergraduates attend the college? This can make a big difference in your experience on a college campus. Think of college sizes in these four categories (based on undergraduate student attendance only). 
 

Boutique Size (<2000) 
Over 500 colleges in the U.S. enroll fewer than 2000 students. These schools are ideal for students with a strong participant learner approach to college. You get to know your teachers and fellow students very well. This provides opportunities to maximize your involvement in activities and construct your own learning experience. Most boutique size schools are private, examples include Julliard, Amherst, Pomona, California Institute of Technology, Davidson, and Haverford. 
 

Liberal Arts Size (2000-5000) 
Over 300 colleges in the US fall in the Liberal Arts size category. Some of the...

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Comparing Financial Aid Award Letters

 

You got into the top three schools on your list.  Each has sent you a financial aid award. One offer looks better than the other two, but is it really?  It’s important to compare financial aid offers.  Here are 6 questions to ask: 

  1. What is your Cost of Attendance (COA)? Does the college list all the costs for going to college: 1) Tuition & Fees; 2) Room & Board; 3) Books & Supplies; 4) Personal Expenses, 5) Transportation (getting to and from the campus). If the award does not include these items, search the website for the information or call the college.  
  2. What is your Expect Family Contribution (EFC) number on your Student Aid Report? The amount your family is expected to pay toward college is on the student aid report generated when you filed the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). This number is needed for comparing financial aid awards.  If your family contribution is close to or more...
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5 Tips for Spring Break College Visits

 

Use your spring break to visit colleges but be aware of spring break schedules for the colleges you wish to visit. It's best to see a college when students are on campus. Here are a few tips to prepare for your spring college visits. 

  1. Create a College Visit Itinerary. Using a map, look at college locations and decide on an itinerary that fits within your given time.  Don’t worry if you can’t see all of the colleges on your list. Focus on some of your top choices and then plan other school visits that are within the same geographic area. 
  2. Register for college visits online. Once you have a list of colleges to visit, register for campus tours online with the admissions office.  Resist the urge to plan “drive through” visits. An official campus tour takes more time, but gives you a better feel for the...
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7 Tips To Ace The SAT

 

 How can you ace the SAT? Here are 7 tips for you: 

  1. Test Day Checklist. Get a good night’s sleep before the test. Be sure you arrive at the SAT prepared with the right tools. See TEST DAY CHECKLIST. Be sure to bring a protein snack, a watch, and an approved calculator. 
  2. Consider Using Score Choice. Consider waiting to send your scores until you see them. You can send them to selected colleges later.
  3. Guess. SAT has eliminated the ¼ pt deduction for guessing and given you only four answers to choose from- just like the ACT.  Eliminate as many answers as possible, then make a calculated guess. It won’t hurt your score.
     
  4. Brush up on Algebra 1 & 2. The SAT now emphasizes Algebra, with some Algebra 2 and Trigonometry. Not much Geometry. The math section includes many word based problems.
      
  5. Pace Yourself. Remember you have two sections to...
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