College Life


Getting Ready for a New Semester College Life

Hello everyone: It’s the end of December as I write this, and students are almost finished with their winter break. You may be greeting the new semester with a great deal of happy anticipation or with a huge feeling of dread. Let’s work on making it the former, not the latter. Okay, so let’s take a quick look at your schedule. What’s on it? Do...

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Asking the Professor to Cut You a Break College Life

Hello everyone: Sometimes circumstances make it difficult to met a deadline. You need a break. Emailing the professor as soon as you can will sometimes lead to a good result. Waiting until one week after the semester is finished and asking the professor to excuse your tardiness and shoddy work on the grounds that you will have to pay for the course, which will utterly...

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Caught by a deadline? College Life

Hello everyone: Okay, you’ve worked hard all semester but you are up against an unforgivable deadline at the end of the semester and your work isn’t done. What can you do now? Understand that the professor has deadlines as well. We have a certain date by which we must post our grades. If we are well-organized, we are ready to post before the last day...

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There is an “our” in group, if you don’t mind mixing the letters up College Life / Writing & Grammar

Hi Everyone: I just finished working with a few classes that were all about teamwork. Happily, some of the teams were superb. Everyone participated fully and contributed as equally as possible. They got a very high grades on their project and they deserved their stellar grades. Sadly, not all the teams worked out well. Some of the team members were MIA, no-show, no-loads who posted...

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Sometimes folks are going to disagree College Life

Hello everyone: I was teaching face-to-face recently when one of my students commented that she disagreed with what the other students said during a discussion. She was pretty upset. I tried explaining that college is a place where we have diverse folks with differing opinions but that everyone in my class has a right to his or her own opinions and that I was comfortable...

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Keeping the professor in the loop College Life

Hello everyone: Sometimes bad stuff happens in the course of the semester. Occasionally, that bad stuff means that you have gotten behind in your work. Sometimes you can work things out with the professor so that you can get back on track. Let’s talk about how to do that. I have military folks in my classes from time to time. Well, actually, I have military...

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Paying attention in class, even if it’s online College Life

Hello everyone: One of the biggest challenges an instructor has is to capture the attention of his or her students. And keep it. When I was in high school, I had an instructor who would jump up on his desk, if he thought we weren’t paying attention. He was an English instructor and I always thought that was rather undignified. A psychology teacher of mine...

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Announcements, announcements, announcements College Life

Hello everyone: Okay. Your instructor posts those terribly boring announcements a couple of times a week. The professor probably drones on and on and puts you to sleep by the second paragraph, right? Why in the world would you want to read them? There are several really good reasons to check them out, no matter how apparently dull and dreadful. First, they might contain something...

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To Ph.D. or not to Ph.D., that is the question College Life

Hello everyone: It can be challenging to get your college degree. If it was an easy task, everyone would be doing it. They aren’t. If you are, you are a special person. But what about higher, higher education? Is a master’s degree or Ph.D. in your future? Let’s talk about that for a moment. What are the degree requirements for the field you hope to...

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Lenience in lateness leads to lost jobs College Life

Hello everyone: One of the colleges where I teach has adopted a new policy: nothing is late until it is really late. Five days late. The students are not docked until the assignment is more than four days late, so on the fifth day, the students lose 2 points out of 100. Big deal. On the sixth day, the recalcitrant student will lose another two...

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