As we’re heading into our third week of classes, it is likely that some of us have fallen behind in our readings and notes. If this relates to you, do not fret and start screaming that the end is nigh in the Hollow. You can save yourself from the chaos that will come. It’s time to buckle down and Tiger Up. Let me give you some simple advice on how to get out of the rut of lazy panic.
First off, it is important to know your perfect study space. There are so many areas on campus where you can study other than your room and the library. Blair Hall and Hollenbeck Hall are wonderful places to crack open the books at the end of classes. Try to change things up and visit new areas around campus to study and find your favorite. If it turns out that your room is your favorite place to study, that is completely fine. Make sure that you keep your desk cleared so you can always sit down and hit the books. Laying in your bed is probably not the best place to read your book for Imperial Russia – or calculus – or any textbook really. Trust me.
The next thing to think about is how you want to take notes. Yes, you must take notes in class, and make them legible too. A good tip for this is to take your time to rewrite them after class. Color code if that is your style. Your textbook can be an extension of your notebook too. On your first read of the text, circle words that you do not understand or think of an interesting connotation for the piece. Highlight quotes you feel are important to bring up in class and write a short reflection on a sticky note or in the margins. Your professors will be pleased with the critical thinking you have put forth in your assignments.
Even if you have fallen behind, participate in class discussion. You can pick up context clues from the conversation going on around you, and when you catch up on the reading, it will make so much more sense. You can always attempt to make a class group chat to help understand the text before you go into the class as well.
These are just a few points of advice to use in your future months here at Wittenberg, but the most important point of advice I can give you is to remember that you do not have to listen to this advice.
If your best place to study is in your bed, go for it. If you don’t have to rewrite your notes or even go over them again, do what you do. You know yourself better than I do.