Many people go into college not really knowing what to expect besides the fact that there might be a ton of homework and the courses are harder than high school, which is somewhat true. Actually, depending on one`s major and the teacher determines on the difficulties of the course. One thing that surprised me and a lot of other first time college students was the work load and studying habits. Even if the class that one takes is not hard it can be time consuming. College work is a lot and one should definitely plan accordingly. Also, a lot of first time students tend to slack in their first year because they`re infatuated with partying and getting the fun college experience instead of just going to class. Well, there are ways to do both, enjoy the parties and fun activities of college and get your work done to pass all of your classes.
First thing is first, when beginning classes prepare to spend at a minimum of five hours or more on homework. English classes include a lot of reading and a minimum of three or four papers due throughout the semester. Other subjects to look out for are math, science, and psychology. All of these classes require a lot of reading. For the students who are taking hands on classes; broadcast, journalism, art, engineering, etc, these classes are fairly easy however the assignments are time consuming because you have to plan on working on projects (with classmates or alone) around your other classes. If working with classmates on a project it might get a little overwhelming because you have to work with the availability of people who have more or longer classes or even those who work.
A lot of people think that online classes are easier than sit in classes. This actually is based on the type of student one is because unlike sit in classes, online classes are self-paced. The teacher will rarely remind you that something is due and you MUST remember that you have an online class. I know for myself, it wasn`t necessarily difficult to take an online class as I was doing sit in classes; my problem was that I kept forgetting that I had an online class. However, the work was fairly easy so I caught up quickly and passed the class with flying colors.
Another thing to keep in mind is the syllabus. Most teachers will not tell you what is due or when because EVERY teacher will give you a syllabus a paper outlining the assignments and test throughout the semester and they expect you to follow along, know when assignments and test are due. Do not underestimate the syllabus. It is very essential to college life. Print them out and hand them in a place where you can glance at them every day to keep you on task.
One VERY important thing to do is GO TO CLASS! If you don`t need to miss class then don`t. In high school one can skip class for a week straight and get caught up instantly, but this is NOT high school. If you consecutively skip class you WILL fail the course. One can literally get behind by simply zoning out for more than 10 seconds. If you MUST miss class I strongly advise you to speak with your professor and make arrangements so that you can still pass.
As stated before, college is NOT high school. You will need to plan out your days so that you can study and get your homework done in a timely manner. I STRONGLY recommend that you keep an agenda to write down homework and test dates so that you`re not rushing through three classes because you forgot an assignment was due. College is all about accuracy, they expect well written papers not something thrown together. If you work while attending school an agenda will help ease the pressure off your back. Just a quick glance and you know what needs to be done. If you follow these tips you are on the right path to being a successful student who can also enjoy the college parties. Good luck!