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How To Prepare for a New Semester
Second Semester is coming on full swing and something I don’t take lightly is preparation. The ending of each semester really all depends on how I began. For me that means making sure I have all the resources I need to truly succeed. Here are some tips that help me to have a great semester.
Write down your syllabi
What I love to do at the start of each semester is to write down my syllabi. I know, I know; It’s exhausting writing down every single syllabus. But trust me, you will feel so relieved knowing what to expect from each of your classes. There will be no “oh crap, we have a test today?!” and other “uh oh” moments. This is simply because you wrote it out and can clearly see what you have to do in each class.
Get a good planner
Of course, you can’t write down your syllabi without a proper place to put your schedule. Each week I like to write out exactly what needs to get done. Having a planner with an easy layout really helps me out and I’m sure it’d help you too! A couple of planners I’ve used in the past and I love are the Vera Bradley planner and the Lily Pulitzer planner. They both have similar similar designs that are perfect to layout my schedule . Plus they’re pretty and I don’t know about you but I like my school supplies to be cute!
Introduce yourself to your professor
It can be a little intimidating introducing yourself to your professors but you are going to want those references down the road. Think about… you’re about to graduate and it’s time to start applying for jobs. But on every single application, it asks for a list of references. However, you let your doubts cloud over you during school and now you have none. Do yourself a favor, go ahead and introduce yourself, it may be scary but building those relationships is key to long term success.
Also, it doesn’t have to be EVERY single professor, choose a couple that you feel you relate to, maybe they had a cool study abroad experience in undergrad, maybe they’re from your hometown. Find someone you are drawn to and go for it!
Become familiar with services
Colleges offer a multitude of services for the students. Mine, in particular, has an Academic Success Center (which is just fancy for a Tutoring Center lol). I can also set up an appointment with my professors to get one on one help.
Knowing where I can find services to help me if I am struggling in a class is very important to me. Find the services your school offers and make a mental note in case you ever need them. Maybe even go to tutoring every week if you are in a challenging course. No one is going to look down on someone that is genuinely trying their best!
If you are new to college it can be a little overwhelming to have all of this free time looming over your head. Days past by and you feel like life is good and suddenly your exam is the next day.
Block out time that you want to dedicate to studying, block out time you want to rest, block out time you’ll be eating or socializing. Block out time for what is important to you down and go from there. For me, I like to plan out when I’m going to be working out, studying for each class and my lunch breaks. Get as deep as you want but know when you’re going to get your work done. It’s easy to let time slip by.
This is something I just recently started doing but it’s making a world of a difference. I do this by dedicating a specific color to each class and highlighting. When I look at my planner I can see each class clearly. I can also see what classes I’ll have to dedicate most of my time too. Color coding has definitely made time blocking way easier and more efficient.
Get Healthy Snacks
As a college student we have crazy schedules and it can easy to let your diet get crazy too. Sometimes it seems easier to just grab the first thing you see on campus. But…that’s not always the healthiest.
Get groceries that nourish your body and fuel you up. I love to snack on bananas, mixed nuts, granola bars, and cheese. To avoid the midday crash, find healthy snacks you enjoy that fuel your body.
I’m always looking for new strategies to implement into my semester prep. What are some ways you prepare for a new courseload?
p.s. If you want some more tips on productivity click here! This blog post gives 5 quick tips to a great day.