Tips for Student Success

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Tips for Student Success



A high GPA is not the key to success in life, but a low one can hurt you. Here are some tips from that can help you reach your potential.
  • Go to class. It’s amazing how much you’ll learn just by showing up! 
  • Participate! Just showing up is a great start but the more active you are in class, the more information you will retain. 
  • Get some sleep. Your 8 a.m. class is not the place to rest after a long night. Get to bed and get some sleep, especially before a big test. 
  • Pay attention to the syllabus. It’s like a roadmap for the semester. It has a summary of course requirements, the professor’s expectations and the due dates for assignments. You won’t get reminders. 
  • Know where to sit. Sitting in the front of class can force you to pay attention. It also makes it easier for you to participate in class discussions.

  • Take note. In fact, take many notes and take good notes. Find a note-taking strategy that complements your learning style. Don’t be afraid to use technology, like a smartphone, to help you. You might even want to record important lectures.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you’re having trouble in class, talk to your professor. Many colleges also offer free tutoring services.
  • Manage your time. Use the time between classes to review for tests, copy notes, read, conduct research, and do homework.
  • Get a strategy for studying. Don’t just study aimlessly. Set a goal and a schedule for your study time. Everyone has different learning styles, and your college may have people who can help you figure out a good studying strategy – so go talk to them!
  • Make friends and network. Know your classmates and find out which ones are succeeding. Join their study group, friend them on social media, do what you can to learn and model their habits. This also helps you build the networking skills you will need to find employment after college.

Want more tips?! Here are 99 tips on How to Succeed in College



Excerpted from Faculty Focus, July 26, 2017, by Maryellen Weimer.

Pick one of the misconceptions below. Discuss whether it has ever applied to you.
  • Learning is fast – Students think that learning can happen a lot faster than it does. Take, for example, the way many students handle assigned readings. They think they can get what they need out of a chapter with one quick read through (electronic devices at the ready, snacks in hand, and ears flooded with music). Or, they don’t think it’s a problem to wait until the night before the exam and do all the assigned readings at once. Students must learn that there are no shortcuts to reading or math comprehension.
  • Knowledge is composed of isolated facts – Students who hold this misconception demonstrate it when they memorize formulas or definitions. A commonly used practice is making flash cards with only one formula, term or concept on each card. The approach may enable students to regurgitate the correct definition, but they never develop a connected understanding or how to reason with and apply concepts. To correct this misconception, students should relate definitions, use definitions to construct arguments, or apply them to some situation.
  • Being good at a subject is a matter of inborn talent rather than hard work – Students often say with great assurance that they can’t write, can’t do math, are horrible at science, or have no artistic ability. If students hold these beliefs about their abilities, they don’t try as hard in those areas and give up as soon as any difficulty is encountered. Then they have even more evidence about those absent abilities. Students need to bring to learning a “growth mindset,” recognized by statements like this, “Yes, I’m pretty good at math, but that’s because I’ve spent a lot of time doing it.” Students should develop these growth mindsets.
  • I’m really good at multi-tasking, especially during class or studying – The evidence is clear: trying to perform multiple tasks at once is virtually never as effective as performing the tasks one at a time focusing completely on each one. The problem could be described as “inattentional blindness” which refers to the fact that when our attention is focused on one thing, we aren’t seeing other things. The problem of not knowing what we missed is that we believe we haven’t missed anything.


Some students think you’re either born with an ability to do math, or you’re not (fixed mindset). Other students think, instead, that we can learn new things at any time, at any age, and that mistakes are opportunities for improvement and developing new skills. That’s a growth mindset. The champions of the growth mindset for students are Jo Boaler and Carol Dweck. Watch the 4-minute below: Learn more at






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Classic Donald Duck - Mathmagic Land

  • I am capable of learning and doing math.
  • Knowing math will positively affect my destiny.
  • Math is everywhere in the world.
  • Hard work is often mistaken for luck or natural ability.
  • If I play the victim, I will give up my power to change the world.
  • I may not know how to do something today, but I WILL tomorrow.
  • I will be patient with myself and others when learning math.
  • Success comes from not being afraid to ask questions.
  • Asking for help isn’t embarrassing, not asking for help is.
  • I have a right to be selfish about my needs as a student.

Geillan Aly, PhD. University of Hartford, Hillyer College



6 Ways to Avoid Plagiarism in Research Papers from

It’s easy to find information for most research papers, but it’s not always easy to add that information into your paper without falling into the plagiarism trap. There are easy ways to avoid plagiarism. Follow some simple steps while writing your research paper to ensure that your document will be free of plagiarism.
  • Paraphrase - So you have found information that is perfect for your research paper. Read it and put it into your own words. Make sure that you do not copy verbatim more than two words in a row from the text you have found. If you do use more than two words together, you will have to use quotation marks. We will get into quoting properly soon.
  • Cite - Citing is one of the effective ways to avoid plagiarism. Follow the document formatting guidelines (i.e. APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.) used by your educational institution or the institution that issued the research request. This usually entails the addition of the author(s) and the date of the publication or similar information. Citing is really that simple. Not citing properly can constitute plagiarism.
  • Quoting - When quoting a source, use the quote exactly the way it appears. No one wants to be misquoted. Most institutions of higher learning frown on “block quotes” or quotes of 40 words or more. A scholar should be able to effectively paraphrase most material. This process takes time, but the effort pays off! Quoting must be done correctly to avoid plagiarism allegations.
  • Citing Quotes - Citing a quote can be different than citing paraphrased material. This practice usually involves the addition of a page number or a paragraph number in the case of web content.
  • Citing Your Own Material - If some of the material you are using for your research paper was used by you in your current class, a previous one, or anywhere else you must cite yourself. Treat the text the same as you would if someone else wrote it. It may sound odd, but using the material you have used before is called self-plagiarism, and it is not acceptable.
  • Referencing - One of the most important ways to avoid plagiarism is including a reference page or page of works cited at the end of your research paper. Again, this page must meet the document formatting guidelines used by your educational institution. This information is very specific and includes the author(s), date of publication, title, and source. Follow the directions for this page carefully. You will want to get the references right.

Checking Research Papers
Be sure to edit your research paper carefully and check for plagiarism before turning it into the class. The steps above are essential for research paper writing. Using plagiarism checker services such as WriteCheck is a great way to assess your paraphrasing and other anti-plagiarism skills. Most educators and educational institutions are using some kind of plagiarism checker software to check students’ papers. Do not take the chance of not checking your research paper. Plagiarism could mean the loss of your academic degree or career.

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