Teacher Resources (Englisch)
STUDYING, LEARNING AND CONTROL:
MAKING SCHOOL A SUCCESS
A guide for making a success out of college
THE STUDY SYSTEM INTRODUCTION
Even though my High School teachers tried to prepare me for what was to come, it was all unexpected. Sure I was told that it would be hard. Sure I was told I would have to work at it. Sure I was told that my teachers would not baby me. Sure most of what I was told was inaccurate, out of date and virtually useless.
What I realized was that High school teachers didn't know much about College because it had been twenty years since most of them were in school. A lot had changed in that time. More will change when you are in College - including you. Remember that you can be anything you wish and do anything you set your mind to.
This is a study and survival guide that I developed when I was in school. I've been teaching it to my students for more than thirty years. At their request, I have written it down so others can easily share it. It is a simple time management and process awareness system that works.
Much of this is designed for a college setting but it also works in High School. Remember that grades count in High School and so do standard test scores. Get on the stick early and keep those grades high if you want to get into a good college and play with the big boys. Competition is tough. There are a hundred others just as good as you are out there and they are competing for the same things you want. You have to have an edge if you want to win. Remember that you can have that edge. Just make up your mind to do it and it will happen.
When I was in school I couldn't keep up with the reading. I was not getting the grades I thought I should considering the amount of time I spent studying. I was young, inexperienced and convinced that all the other students had found some magic formula that would help them function in school. I didn't know where anything was, others did. Everyone else knew the answers, I didn't. Was I stupid? I wanted to talk to my teachers but I was afraid. I wanted someone to help me, to talk to me and tell me that it would be all right. I needed someone to show me how to survive. Nobody was there. I wanted to have fun with the other students but I was afraid. I would go to the cafeteria to eat and couldn't because of the giant knot in my stomach. I went to all the orientation lectures, club meetings and mixers and it confused me even more. It was all so stupid, boring and confusing - until I learned how to make the system work for me. That is what you will have to do as well. I hope this document will make the transition easier for you.
The key is to remember that all those teachers, professors and administrators work for you. Their only reason for being there is to help you to obtain an education. Don't walk about aimlessly. Make things happen. Take charge of your life and remember that anything you want is at your fingertips and is within your control. Just do it!
It will be rare for you to find a College or University that truly cares about you as a person. Many say they care but are not willing to invest the time in you as an individual to help. Yes, there are some that do but they are not typical. You will usually be herded into a large hall and forced to suffer an inquisition of incompetent speeches on how to be successful at that institution. Tired administrators have spent years perfecting the art of making the simple difficult and the obvious obscure. Don't fall for it. The best information you can get is usually from other students who have been thru it and have figured it out. Students know which classes are worthless and which are excellent. They know which professors will give you a straight answer and which will jerk you about. Listen to them. Most teachers and administrators are only interested in perpetuating their domain. Be cautious. I said most, not all. There are those that are reliable and do care about you and it is up to you to find them, and find them you must.
All this may sound like College is going to be boring and miserable. Nothing could be further from the truth. College is wonderful. It is exciting and fun. It is likely to be the most productive and important time of your life. You will love it and you will be having fun at the same time. If it is not and you are not, get out because you are either doing it wrong or you don't want to be there.
You should be going to school for yourself. Get that straight immediately.
You are there for yourself.
You are not going to school for your parents.
You are not going to school to please your friends.
You are not going because you have nowhere else to go.
You are not going because you want to meet a mate or to party all the time.
Get it straight - you are there for yourself and your prime directive is to get an education. You don't have to know exactly what you are going to do for the rest of your life. You don't even have to know what your major will be. It is better if you don't. It will open up more possibilities. You do have to know why you are there and it has to be for the right reasons.
I have been teaching for over thirty years at the High School and University level and have seen many students that are miserable and barely passing classes because they don't want to be in school. I have seen students who are still tied to parents and are going to school to please them.
Wrong ! Wrong !
You need to take care of number one - you. If you don't take care of number one, nobody else will.
You can start taking care of number one right now. This minute. Immediately. Start by finishing this book now. Read it to the end without interruption and resolve to use its advice and be the best student you have ever been and use the system to help you get to wherever you want to be. Show them who you are and that you count. Remember that you are the most important one at that school.
A FEW WORDS ABOUT THE SYSTEM:
Remember, nobody gives you points for the time you spend at a task. You may not like it but that's the way it is. Now that you know the truth you have two choices. 1. Fight it and act as though it is not the way things are. 2. Use that information and learn to use the system.
The first course might be noble and be the ultimate challenge but it will only bring you aggravation and wasted time. You only have four years, probably five to get thru College. You don't have time to fight dragons that will be difficult or impossible to slay. If I have learned anything in thirty years of counseling students it is that they should choose their battles carefully. Fight only the ones that you can win. Never underestimate your opponent. Never loose sight of the goal, your goal - get an education.
The second choice may not make you a hero but it will help you achieve your goal. Take what is good and let the rest of the experience flow around you. Don't waste your time over it.
You get points only for performance. Nothing in this world is free, not even this system. You have to work at it. Yes, there is a catch. You must start the system now. Go ahead - get a pencil and jot some notes in the margins as you read - now!
Once I learned the system, I had more free time then ever before. I had better grades, and I felt smarter than most of the other students around me, because I was. I may not have been when I started but I sure am now. Most are still trying to figure it out - I know what it's about.
It has been interesting to watch those of my students who used the system. Long after they graduated they are still using the learned techniques and are all doing well, better than I and that is why I teach.
At first glance, the system sounds confining, rigid, restrictive and almost punitive. In fact it is just the opposite. Once you learn how to manage your time more efficiently (that is all the system teaches you), you are set free of all the house keeping tasks that clutter your mind and eat up your time. Remember there is more to school than just what happens in class or in the books. Enjoy the free time to be you.
The program consists of eight parts.
I. The Date Book - This is a daily log / diary in which you keep all the items you need to.
II. The Schedule - This is the hourly schedule that you make each semester and live by - seven days a week
III. The Room - This is a description of the physical environment that you study in.
IV. The Method - This is the actual study technique.
V. The Classroom - What to do and not do in the classroom
VI. Test Taking - simple rules in taking a test
VII. Advisement & Advisors - This concerns picking an advisor and how to get him to work for you
VIII. Using The System - This is how to play their game and win.