Bachelor’s diploma: how you can set up your self to succeed at college

Going to university after high school often means a great deal of organizational freedom, few study hours, and a great need to work alone. What is the first piece of advice you would give to students?

I advise them to go to class first: some think they can just reproduce lectures, but by definition they don’t capture all that is being said, and those with auditory memory or visual abilities are deprived of this lecture atmosphere. . When a teacher is good, a lot of things are informal or referential, which can sometimes make students uncomfortable.

Is this a way for you to have a rhythm? Is it important to divide our activities?

Yes! At the beginning of the semester, it’s good to try to set a schedule where you put in your studies, library time, time for sports or physical activity, and obviously leisure time! The invitation may upset his schedule, but that’s okay, the main thing is to set the stage. Large pebbles in a vase, then small ones, then sand.

And when we work, we work and when we rest, we rest! Sometimes we can work, then Instagram, then work, and at the end of the day we haven’t rested and worked. Our day-to-day work is very hectic and we put the phone on airplane mode to be able to focus: it is better to work with the phone off for an hour than to stop every ten minutes and work for two hours.

Is working outside of class important to succeeding at university?

Since there are fewer courses than in high school, self-employment is an important part: you can only succeed by working for yourself. Planning time in the library is important: we often work better than at home, we work with others, we have access to more books and we read more actively. Be it history, literature, law, language or sociology.

It’s hard to read everything…

I advise my students to finish the course from the bibliography that the teacher can give, browse, familiarize themselves with the library and look at the books according to the chapters, read the most suitable one. twenty pages… And to make a few notes: it allows you to return to the topics presented in the lecture.

However, in high school we sometimes lose the habit of studying because too many exercises develop thinking. In college, you should re-read your classes every week if possible and study dates, concepts and demonstrations that are important to remember.

What exactly is important to remember or record, and is there an ideal method?

When taking notes, it is better to think about what is important in what the teacher said: taking notes is not about taking everything, but about capturing ideas and details. You can’t copy everything the teacher says. Learning to take notes means determining what is secondary and what is not. To top it all off, the risk is that the train is late.

Now, more notes are taken on laptops. Some teachers forbid it in the first year: at first, your internet connection makes you more easily distracted and you are mentally “off”; and then the exams are done by hand, some students lose their writing habits. Some researchers also believe that handwriting helps with memory. But the advantage of the computer is that we can easily supplement our notes with our library readings! Each student is free to choose the best method for himself.

On the other hand, in the absence of a disability, I do not recommend taking notes on your cell phone and recording the course, telling yourself that you will listen to it again at home. By recording the course, our listening is very passive and we don’t take notes thinking everything is in the box. Also, do we really have time to listen again tonight? It is better to let things escape us and we complete them by exchanging or reading.

Do you have any tips for exam success?

Regular practice is the key to success, especially for exams, even if you now have a lot of continuous control. Especially since memory is cumulative, by working as you go and revising your lessons, you will know very well what you have covered for the January exams between September and November.

Studying at the last minute is very stressful, learning is superficial and we are filling in for the exam, and the license is one step forward in three years. To motivate yourself, you can do two or three regularly, which allows you to revise and ask yourself questions. When you express yourself verbally, you quickly realize what is missing in your argument!

Taking the course, completing it in the library, remains a somewhat lonely affair that contrasts with high school. Other than general corrections, are we alone in college?

No! First, you should try to block yourself and ask questions when you are lost. It’s important to do this and not be afraid to ask stupid questions: usually ten people ask just like you. It can be difficult in lectures, the lectures are quite short, the demonstration is going on, we don’t have time to answer. But it is important not to hesitate in TD.

Also, there is often a pedagogical referent per year, and you should not hesitate to ask for it if you have the impression of losing a place. Even if we admire his teachers.

Is it more reliable with the risk that the courses are no longer offered on the site?

Yes, because some universities re-present the video and this can be a source of fragility, especially for students at the L1 level. Now you need to know who to turn to for answers. It is important to identify the pedagogical secretariat, take ownership of the university and the building. If they ever close, it will be more difficult… We need to connect with teachers and classmates now.

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