Academic success in college can be difficult to gauge outside of the realm of a grade point average. Objectively, a grade point average is a certifiable way to gauge success. However, college is also about incubation. How much are you learning? Do you feel like you are growing? Do you feel like you are maturing? If you can answer these questions with some level of excitement and gusto, you have probably found your own success in college. A grade point average is there as a barometer of sorts. However, there are always ways to increase your grade point average and your intellectual enjoyment. Here are the top five tips for academic success in college.
- Participate in Class
Class participation is critical, because most professors not only encourage it; they build it into your total grade. In fact, most colleges want to encourage dialogue within classrooms, because it boosts the quality of courses that a university offers. If you are having trouble speaking up in class, you may want to start slowly. You may also want to meet other students in your class, so that you feel more comfortable.
- Meet with Your Professors
Another way to feel more comfortable in front of your class is to meet with your professor on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Your professor will be a great ally in college. He or she will be a mentor of sorts - one that you can look up to and ask questions. Moreover, when you graduate, your professors may be able to write you a letter of recommendation for graduate school or for a position at your first job. Indeed, getting on your professor's good side is hugely important.
- Speak to an Academic Counselor
Most colleges have an academic counselor. This will be another crucial ally to have in college. If you are unsure what courses you should take, a counselor will help put you on the right path. If you are going to University of Southern California, an academic counselor will help you find the best major - a major that interests you. A true measure of success in college is how much you enjoy a certain course.
- Keep an Organizer
On top of meeting with your professor and meeting with your academic counselor, you also want to keep an organizer with all of your daily obligations. This will help you keep track of classes, extracurricular activities and study sessions. When you are in college, you will have a very full schedule, and there is no way that you will be able to keep everything in your head.
- Nail Down Your Note Taking Skills
On top of everything, you want to be sure to practice your note taking skills. In college, some of your courses will allow you to take open note quizzes and exams, so the better your notes are, the better you will do on your exam. In the end, the more notes you take, the better you will get at taking them, because you want to practice legibility and depth of detail.