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Spring term kickoff and advice for new students

Cherry Blossoms

It’s the first week of classes for the Spring 2015 term at Granite State College!

Getting tips and advice can help you stay organized and on track throughout the term will be valuable whether you're taking your first, fourth, or fourteenth class.

To help set the pace for a successful semester, especially for those just starting or returning to college, we asked our faculty and staff to offer their best advice for new students.


Communicate, communicate, communicate

If you have questions or just want to have a point or two clarified, definitely reach out to your instructor. There is a ton of information to take in at the beginning of the term:  new material, new deadlines, new goals. Your instructors understand this reality.

Whether it’s on your syllabus or not, consider asking questions and addressing anything that seems confusing as part of your assignments for week #1 of your course.

In this case, it pays off to over-communicate versus under-communicate. Don't worry about whether it's a "silly" question. If there's something that's preventing you from fully understanding your responsibilities, it's worth asking.

Create a master calendar

Once you have deadlines for the term, record all of the dates that are important to you over the next few months. A few things to consider…

  • Course due dates
  • Academic calendar (GSC holidays, Add/drop, etc.)
  • Your personal vacation
  • Appointments (doctor, car service, hair salon, dentist)
  • Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Memorial Day
  • Graduation celebrations and other family get-togethers
  • Your kids’ school vacation days, weekly activities, and last day of school
  • A little "me time" for some relaxing, fitness, or family time
  • The season finale of your favorite TV shows or a a few Red Sox games. If you don't want to miss it, lock in the date and time so you don't feel under pressure/
Engagement

No matter what you’re studying, find a way to draw a connection between your life and the subject of your course. This can be tough when you're taking a general education requirement, but the pay off is big for a few reasons:

  • You will gain more valuable take-aways
  • Class discussions will come alive
  • Your instructor will learn more about your interests and be able to provide mor relevant and helpful advice
  • It will foster a sense of community with your classmates
Know where to go for tech support.

GSC can provide support and resources to get you back on track if you’re having technology issues. For log in related questions, get in touch with IT Department by visiting it.granite.edu or call 1-888-372-4270.

If you're taking online courses, make sure you're comfortable in Moodle, GSC’s online learning system. Anytime throughout the term, you can check out our self-paced tutorial on my.granite.edu/orientation to get a refresher on how it all works.

What is your advice for a successful term? 

 

Download our course schedule. Learn how you can start or return to college.