Student success is something that is on every graduate students mind, especially considering that going to graduate school is a huge time and financial commitment. Students need to be ready and prepared to tackle this intense process, and the best way to do this is to prepare themselves as an undergraduate. While you are an undergraduate, you should master time management, study, and self-discipline skills because these skills will serve you well in graduate school.
After you have applied and been accepted to graduate school, be prepared for a minimum of 12–15 hours class time each week and 3 times as much study time outside of class. If you are not prepared to work hard and keep up, you can easily fall behind in graduate school, and student success will be unattainable. Gradate classes are often more focused on discussions and less on lectures. Consequently, students must be caught up on reading and other assignments, or they will fall behind.
What specifically are some of the ways to achieve student success in graduate school? First, you should always stay on top of your course materials. What’s the best way to stay caught up in class? Always plan ahead and stay prepared. You can stay prepared by knowing when your assignments are due and by reading ahead. Reading ahead of the assigned chapters will not only keep you up to date but will also allow you to make connections among concepts. Concepts in graduate school often build on each other, so reading ahead will allow you to make connections more quickly. Reading ahead also allows for some human error. If you don’t have time to read an assignment because of some unexpected circumstance the night before class, you will still be prepared for class.
College is a mental game. As with other games, being stressed, unorganized, and overwhelmed are all tickets to failure; however, you can prevent this from happy by organizing your time to make tasks seem more manageable. You can do things in a timely manner if you exercise self-discipline, which will eliminate the stress involved in procrastination and last-minute scrambling. Keeping your time under control will also keep your task list shorter and less overwhelming.
Attending class is vital to any education. Avoid missing class at all costs to stay prepared and to keep from falling behind. If you must miss class, be aware of the attendance policies, and email your professor before you miss. Ask classmates what information you missed in class, and borrow their notes. Make sure to be caught up before the next class, and remember that it is imperative that you receive all missed information.
Following the guidelines to student success laid out for you above may help you navigate your way through the sometimes difficult waters of graduate school.
Deciding on a major is not an immediate requirement to get into college, but you will need a more specific field of study when you are preparing to apply for graduate school because graduate schools want to know what you would like to study in more detail. Additionally, you will want to choose a graduate program that fits your area of study or specialization, so you should decide what you want to study as early as possible in your academic career to help ensure student success. Deciding on the right major or field of study for yourself can be difficult; however, there are many things that you can do and there are many major or field of study resources that you can use to help yourself choose a major.
How to use Major Field of Study Resources to Help You
Several top major or field of study resources suggest that when choosing a major you should first examine your personal interests and skills. What do you enjoy doing and think that you could be good at? Make a list of your likes and dislikes, and narrow your list down to find something that truly interests you and that you might like to study. You can also choose a major based on other factors besides likes and dislikes. For example, you might choose a major because you know that you need a specific major to go into your family’s business, or you might choose a major because you want to pick a major with a profitable career path.
Choosing a major is a big decision, but there are a multitude of major or field of study resources available to help you. For example, you can discuss your major options with academic advisors who can review your academic profile and help you determine your academic strengths to decide what major might benefit you most. In addition to academic advisors, many universities also have counseling centers with career counselors who can provide vocational guidance by administering and interpreting interest inventories, such as the Self-Directed Search or the Myers Briggs Personality Type Indicator. Results from interest inventories can help you decide what really sparks your curiosity. Furthermore, professors can share their experiences with you and can help you decide if you might like their field. Finally, taking your required core courses can help you explore and make connections in a variety of fields.
Deciding which major is right for you can be a difficult process. However, you might enjoy exploring your options to find a major that is right for you, especially if you look for something that you could be happy making a career of or studying on a more detailed level in graduate school.