When you were in high school, you probably could juggle coursework with your outside responsibilities easily. But with the new challenges of college, you might find that some changes in your study habits are needed. Now is the time to explore ways to strengthen those habits.
Where can you turn? It’s important to get the support you need to do your best. At ICDC College, you can take advantage of the school’s many resources to develop new study strategies. And before too long, your skills could improve.
If you’re studying online, begin ramping up your study skills by logging onto the student portal, my.ICDC. There you can access tools such as our Studying Your Way to Success workshop, pages of research and writing help, access to – and training on the use of – our online library, and even a full, optional, online study skills class. For additional help, you can communicate with your instructor via your dedicated ICDC email account.
And for those who are studying at one of our campuses, you can meet one-on-one with your ICDC College instructor. Most of the instructors have set office hours. If you prefer, you can make an appointment or send your instructor an email to ask for extra help. Or, you can meet with any of our campus Student Services Advisors on a walk-in basis.
Showing Up and Self-Checking
One of the basic ways to improve your chances of success is simple – show up for class. By missing your class, you will you miss important course information. Plus, some classes have attendance rules that could affect your grade.
Students also should be able to keep track of their learning progress. They need to know whether they’re truly understanding the material or if they need extra work in a certain area. For instance, if you’re taking a medical clinical course and don’t understand the terminology, you’ll need to go back over it again until it makes sense to you. It is also very important that you utilize the resources and support system provided by the college. At each campus, including Online, Student Services Advisors are accessible for those students who need assistance.
Once you’re in college, expectations often change. “In their high school classes, a lot of students could get through just by memorizing facts and passing tests, but college programs go deeper into their topics,” says the Director of Admissions at ICDC College. “The information you will learn is industry specific and will prepare you for employment. If you don’t understand the foundational information, it will be hard to move forward. We want to ensure that the information is being retained because it’s vital in moving forward with the curriculum. If students think of studying as their job, they will help themselves treat it with more care.”
Figure out what kinds of aids work for you in your “job” of studying. If you’re taking a business course, for example, flash cards may work best. Or, you could write down worksheet procedures to test yourself in bookkeeping skills. Continually examine your study habits to see what’s working and what’s not. Keep trying alternatives to get the help you need to succeed.
Managing Your Time
Another big part of fortifying your study skills is tomanage your time so you can learn most effectively.
If you’re taking classes at an ICDC College campus, try coordinating your class schedule to cope with your workload. Both morning or evening class schedules are offered. There is some flexibility if you might need to miss a class session. For example, if you arranged for a regular morning class, but had to miss it, you can talk with your instructor to do a makeup class that evening. It would affect your ability to have perfect attendance, but you would be able to continue your learning on schedule. If you are pursuing an online program, you’ll likewise need to figure out a schedule that allows you to balance your learning time with your study and assignment timeframes.
Good time management is a habit worth mastering to ensure college success. Here are some tips:
- Set goals each day – writing them down.
- If you’re attending classes on campus, be on time.
- If you’re studying online, set a schedule for yourself and stick to it.
- Be prepared and put forth your best effort.
- Check emails every day so you don’t miss any vital announcements.
“Students need to work more intelligently,” says the Director of Student Services – Online. “You’ve got to have self-motivation. You’re in class or learning online for a specific period of time, and have other activities in your life.”
“Balancing academic and other obligations can be tough,” she adds. “It’s a huge learning process to work out what you need to do versus what you want to do. I believe it’s best to do everything in moderation. And ask for help when you need it!”
Scheduling Makes a Difference
Even if you’re taking fewer classes than you did in high school, every course may be more demanding and requires you to study well. Students may not realize what an important role good scheduling plays in reaching their goals.
ICDC College’s Student Services recommends mapping out your program requirements and other commitments. Don’t just look at one week at a time—think about what is ahead in the next month or so.
For those Online students who have trouble getting a passing grade for their coursework, the instructor creates a plan to help them. If students fail to complete their instructor’s makeup plan, they will then be enrolled in ICDC College’s Study Hall program. This allows them to be partnered with mentors who can give them the extra help they need to finish assignments.
“Studying becomes a process,” says ICDC College’s Online Student Success Supervisor. “If students are having difficulty passing a particular class, we partner them with a Study Hall mentor who will provide them with the makeup plan and attention they need to complete their work.”
Some students put so much work into one course that they might forget to put the time into other classes,” she says. “Students might start losing confidence if they don’t approach the tasks carefully and steadily. The goal of Study Hall is for students to gain time management skills both in completing assignments for their current class and in doing makeup work for their previous incomplete classes.”
An Online Student Advisor says, “Our Study Hall program gives students more opportunity to work on the courses they find difficult. That way, they can achieve their end-goal of getting a certificate, diploma, or Associate’s Degree in the field of their choice.”
If you’re taking classes in the traditional campus setting and struggling with your studies, there is also help for you. You can communicate via secure email with your ICDC College instructor, or make an appointment to visit with him or her during office hours to get the extra help you need.
“As a student, you need to take responsibility for your success. That means understanding what is expected of you, reviewing your notes, and rechecking the material before attending class,” says the Manager of Student Affairs/Corporate Office Manager at ICDC College. “Then you can go over the material that you need more help with, and you can keep getting better and better.”