If you’re a non-traditional student pursuing a college degree at Colorado Christian University’s College of Adult & Graduate Studies, you may be a little “rusty” when it comes to getting into the groove as a college student. If you attended college when you were younger or have never taken college classes, you may be wondering if you’ll be able to juggle work, school and family responsibilities successfully. Thousands of CCU students have attended school while working full-time both inside and outside of the home, and you can, too. By establishing good study and organization habits early in your college career, you will ease your stress level, increase your level of preparation for coursework and exams and get more enjoyment out of our studies.
Habits to Help Improve School Performance
The key to being successful in college is to be prepared. There really is no room for procrastination in a college student’s life. While many students claim to work better under pressure and will actually put off assignments and studying as long as possible, studies show that an overwhelming majority of people perform better when they’re prepared. How can a student do his best work if he’s cramming several chapters of textbook reading and studying into the night before the exam? It’s extremely stressful to put off writing a lengthy research paper until the day or two before it’s due. We suggest you actually complete assignments ahead of the due date to allow time for revision and last-minute additions. Having your work done before it’s due will also give peace of mind knowing your work is finished and that you have time to make any changes you deem will improve the quality of the assignment. By pulling “all nighters” the result is an exhausted student, and we know that the brain simply does not function as well when the body is sleep deprived. You are much sharper and concentration improves when the body and mind are well rested.
Ask questions and communicate with your instructors. CCU’s faculty members are here to help, and questions and classroom discussion are highly encouraged across all degree programs. Even after class has ended, you can contact your professor via email and get the answers you need. Every successful student-teacher relationship is built upon clear and open communication, and miscommunication is one factor that can lead to poor performance in school. At the end of class, make sure you understand everything that is expected of you; and keep in mind the old cliche’ that there are no stupid questions. If you have questions about how papers should be formatted, don’t hesitate to ask. If you’re unclear about what type of essay the class was recently assigned, simply ask for clarification. The chances are very good that other students in the class have the same questions as you but may be too timid to ask. They’ll be thankful that you had the wisdom and courage to ask those questions, and your instructor will be impressed that you care enough to get the necessary clarification to do a great job on that particular assignment.
Stay organized by keeping all your coursework in one place at home, and check to make sure you have everything you need before heading to campus. If you’re pursuing a degree online, organize a quiet study zone at home where you won’t be interrupted while you’re working. Create a home office type of environment and explain to your children that your study place is like an office. Find a place to study that fits your specific personality and learning style. Then stock your study space with school supplies that will help you avoid last-minute emergencies.
Understand your dominant learning style and gear your studies to fit your learning style. If you’re a visual learner, take copious notes, and if you’re an auditory learn, record lectures with your instructors’ permission. If you prefer a hands-on learning style (known as kinesthetic learning), create ways to actively learn by using your body and movement. Kinesthetic learners prefer projects that require building things or making learning tools such as charts, graphs, note cards and the like.
Study a little bit each day to avoid cramming. Doing this will prevent you from spending a whole night trying to memorize everything you need for a test and getting stressed. You will remember things more easily and in the long run will free up more time.
Colorado Christian University has several degree programs from which to choose. In addition to offering Associate Degrees, Bachelor Degrees and Master Degrees, we also have a number of certificate programs that many students begin with to prepare for more advanced degrees. Learn more about admissions and financial aid for CCU by contacting the University or visiting these helpful pages: