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Study Skills

Goal Setting

What you achieve depends on your answer to 2 questions. Have you asked yourself these two vital questions?

  1. Why am I taking this course?
  2. What is the greatest benefit I will get from this course? (other than a credit)

Doing what you want, to get what you want, should be your main concern when choosing courses or attending classes. Even compulsory courses in a program are easier to endure if you decide ahead of time to get something of use from them, and then go for it.

The answers to the two vital questions are your motivators. Strong motives make studying and achieving what you want easier. Hopefully you answered the two questions before paying for the course - but better late than never. Answering these two questions before each class will help you get the most out of your class sessions.

To get the most from each class, approach the class with a winning mind set. Know what you want to get from the class and make sure you get it - after all, you are the one paying for it and putting in the time.

Prior to each class,

After the class

There are 4 initial sources of information for answering the two vital questions prior to taking a course, or as soon as you can after enrolling.

  1. Your university or school calendar. This can help provide a brief synopsis of the course and where it fits in the overall program.
  2. The teacher or prof. Before you take a course, or as soon as possible, talk to the person delivering it. Talking with people provides insight. One conversation can be more useful than reading 10 textbooks. Get to know your prof and, at the same time, answer these two key questions.
  3. Your course outline or syllabus provides more detail and will help you identify a theme or pattern for the way the class is going to go. This may help you develop your own focus and work more efficiently.
  4. The textbook together with the course outline will help you preview the content of the course. Particularly useful would be the table of contents, examples of problems, glossary or index, captions in margins or diagrams.
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