By George Reyes
Developing college skills is a real art. Whether you are making the transition from high school or have decided to start college after years of work or child rearing, college study can be very different from your previous experiences.
To develop skills that will enhance your college experience, consider the following:
- What is your classroom experience?
- Are you an active learner or a passive learner?
- Do you arrive to class on time?
- Are you prepared for class?
Take charge of your learning
Students who take charge of their learning are usually prepared and have a greater success than students who are not accustomed to the rigors of college work.
Try to develop behaviors that contribute to your learning. Arrive several minutes before class. Sit in the front or middle of the classroom. Review your notes after class.
These are just a few of the behaviors that can make a difference in developing the skills needed to be successful in college.
A positive or negative attitude toward college can make a big difference in succeeding or failing. Students who are motivated and have goals usually succeed in achieving them.
Persistence in overcoming barriers that interfere with what you want to achieve is also important. When problems do arise, seek help until you have found a workable solution. It is often necessary to be self-disciplined and make sacrifices to achieve your goal. Know that you may need to devote a great effort to attain that piece of paper or job skill.
Finally, having a support group to encourage your progress is essential. Seek out people who are responsible and caring and can provide you with a sounding board as you progress.
Another thing to consider is how you learn.
Not everybody learns the same way. There are many learning styles as well as a variety of instruments that can determine which one is most like you.
Examining how you learn is an excellent way to improve your development of college skills. If you are interested in discovering your learning style, contact a professional in the Student Services area at your campus.
Also, look for the College Success Workshops that are offered each fall/spring semester. Several campuses provide a learning style inventory as part of their workshop.
George Reyes is dean of student services at the Pinnacle Campus. As a counselor, he has been part of the faculty at Dallas County Community College District and the Houston Community College District. He holds a bachelor's degree in Education from Texas State University in San Marcos and a master's degree from Texas A&M University.