Are you returning to school this fall? If so, you are not alone. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), 33% of the 18 million undergraduate students in the U.S. are over the age of 25 and a 20% rise of adult student enrollments is predicted from 2010 to 2020. Whether you are working on an undergraduate or graduate degree, professional certification, or a vocational training program, congratulations on making the decision to further your education. Keep in mind the following tips for success as you go back to school.
1) Seek guidance from your academic advisor – map out your overall academic plan, schedule classes, and check in periodically to stay on track or with any questions.
2) Participate in orientation – attend orientation sessions before you begin classes, either on campus or online, to get to know the institution and its resources.
3) Set up your student email account – all course information and billing is done online now instead of by mail. Contact the information technology department with questions or to ensure you have completed all the necessary steps.
4) Understand the online learning platform – most schools will use an online system like Blackboard for course information. Use the tutorials prior to enrollment (especially if taking online courses) to navigate the system and ensure that you have the required software/technology.
5) Create an organized study space – establish a dedicated space for studying that is free of distractions and organized for maximum results.
6) Develop a daily study schedule and routine – prioritize your time and work hard; plan ahead for assignments and allow extra time to complete them given your other obligations.
7) Connect with classmates and instructors – participate in course discussions whether in the classroom or online, ask questions and share your ideas/perspectives.
8) Utilize institutional resources – take advantage of tutoring services, writing centers, and other available academic assistance. Ask for help if you need it.
9) Balance your time – allow some free time in your schedule, but also understand that you may need to pass on events to study. Celebrate your accomplishments and do not get discouraged.
10) Check in with your AthLife advisor – feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns related to your return to school and academic plan.