college

The Honest Guide to College

I’m not going to lie, sometimes college can be a lot. After my first year, and befriending quite a few upperclassmen, I’ve learned some helpful trick that has helped keep me sane and on top of things. So I thought I’d pass them on! Also, I essentially consider this part one of the honest guide to college, this one will be all about scheduling classes, going to them, and homework. I’m sure part two will come soon!

Scheduling Classes – Take a full load, but remember to keep it balanced.

Don’t schedule all of your tough classes in a single semester
I learned this hard way in the spring of my freshman year when attempting to tackle Human Physiology and Human Kinesiology (which had a lab). I then received amazing advice from my physiology professor in the summer when I re-took the class after dropping it in the spring. He shared the advice: “Science is like liquor, you don’t mix your -ology’s just like you don’t mix your liquors”

Try to schedule it so that you have a variety of homework.
Nothing’s worse than being bogged down by a bunch of writing heavy courses, it’s best if you can have a mix. Some writing, tests, and worksheets are best to help break it up and not burn you out.

Speak to your advisor before scheduling classes
They’re there for a reason, to help guide you and make sure you stay on track. Plus, they also know if a class is easy, hard, writing-heavy, etc.

Keep in mind you WILL NEED time for homework and online classes when making your schedule
Which might mean choosing not to have classes on certain days, putting a two-hour break in between classes, or having all of your classes in the afternoon so you can study the mornings

If possible, keep your personality in mind when picking times
Sometimes it’s not possible to avoid 8AMs, but if you’re not truly a morning person and can schedule the class later in the day, do so! Due to my major, I had 8AMs both semesters freshman year, and I had friends who either fell asleep in class, were late, or missed because they just weren’t morning people.

Be sure to have a plan for eating meals!
Some professors will allow you to bring your lunch into class, but I prefer to have a break during lunch so I can relax while I eat.

Classes

Never go to class without a bottle of water and a pen and notebook
It’s amazing how much water you will drink throughout your day. Between walking around campus to class, all the time spent in class, etc. It’s good to have a bottle so you can get a drink without missing class. Plus, despite being a person who types all of their notes on their laptop, the number of times I’ve had a professor require us to take out a pen and piece of paper is amazing! So before leaving your dorm/apt before heading to class, ensure you have a water bottle, notebook, and pen!

If it’s a workday and you’re given the option to leave class and work elsewhere, actually use that time to work.
Freshman fall semester, my 8 AM was a class that was worksheet heavy, and my professor would give workdays, and I never took them, and would sleep in and would do it later – on Tuesday it was my only class, and on Thursday I had a night lab. But I wouldn’t have been able to do that in the spring.

Sit wherever you’re comfortable!
Most posts say to sit up front, but I where I sit depends on the class. If it’s a major related course, I sit closer to the front, but if it’s a block/gen ed class I sit further back. Also if you fidget or get up during class, sit further back to not distract others!

After the third class (usually), seats may as well be assigned
After the third class – roughly first week – whatever seat you’ve sat In is now yours. Don’t move and throw everyone else off unless you absolutely have to. Keep in mind this may not always be the case. My freshman evolutionary biology class constantly moved around even when we took our final.

Always be respectful and kind to your professors, TA’s, and classmates
Professors and TA’s are there to help you, and truly want you to succeed in the class, and there’s no reason to not be nice to your classmates. You could possibly make a friend, or just have someone to help you out with notes if you miss class.

Make at least one friend in every class
You don’t have to be BFFs, but chat with the person you sit beside every class so that you have someone to study or share notes with if you need to.

Homework

Unlike high school, you really can’t skip homework!
Homework in college piles up quickly and tends to be worth a decent percentage of your grade. Plus, they tend to be a bit bigger projects or papers, that consume quite a bit of time. It’s best to stay on top of it!

Break larger projects up into smaller deadlines
By doing so, it makes it easier to work on and helps prevent you from leaving it until the last minute

If a class has a lot of worksheets as homework, start a study group!
This is really helpful in math classes, especially if you get stuck on a problem cause then you have others who may be able to help.

Try to start homework as soon as you get it!
This is a big help! Try and start your homework once you get back from classes for the day, to ensure it gets done and doesn’t get pushed off till the last minute.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Whether it’s from your professor, TAs, tutors, or classmates. Don’t be afraid to go to them and ask for help.

Don’t ignore the syllabus!
As soon as you get the syllabus, enter all of the due dates into your planner. If you want to go the extra mile (hint: you do), go ahead and add in dates to start working on projects, too.

Work ahead, so you have flexibility in your schedule
– Work ahead, so you have time to hang out with your friends at the last minutes instead of being stuck in the library working on a project that’s due first thing in the morning.

NEVER PLAGIARIZE!!
I can’t stress this enough! It’s the fastest way to get kicked out of class, your program, or even school. If you’re not sure if it needs a citation, it needs a citation.

Number one rule
Do all of your work and do it the best you can. As long as you follow that, you’ll be golden.

Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.

How Often Should College Students Get a Dental Checkup

Unfortunately, college students are at a high risk of cavities. Since college offers them the freedom that they may have never experience before, many college students choose to do whatever they want, whenever they feel like it. If they are not in the mood to brush or floss, they simply won’t. When this happens, they leave some parts of their mouths susceptible to plaque and bacteria.

College students are also known to eat foods and sip beverages that are loaded with sugar and can damage their teeth. They may also get into smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol, two behaviors that can cause dry mouth and gum inflammation.

If college students do drink, they should opt for lighter beers, which contain calcium and silicon and less damaging ingredients than other types of alcohol. Drinking from a straw is also encouraged as it can prevent stains and makes it easier for college students to control how much they drink and reduce their exposure to harmful bacteria.

By visiting the dentist every six months or so, college students can reduce their chances of cavities, gum disease, and other oral complications. If you are the parent of a college student, it’s wise to work with your child to find dates and times that are convenient for them to visit the dentist. You can schedule dentist appointments on their behalf or encourage them to do so on their own.

Although college students are usually busy juggling classes, extracurricular activities, social events, and internships, oral health should not be ignored. If your child goes to school in the Raleigh area, they are welcome at Lane & Associates, a highly rated North Carolina dental practice.

Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.

Tactics to Help you For Your Next Exam

They say that if want something underneath you must stoop. The saying applies in all life situations include academics. Passing exams is not easy if you do not do your part as a student. Most students feel pressured at the last minute when the exam timetable appears on different boards of the school. Those who are not prepared for exams look for ways to pass them without struggling. While others sneak in phones to surf during exams, some spend the evening before an exam trying to cram everything under the influence of drugs.

Studies show that last-minute rush can never make you achieve better than studying earlier. Even if it is normal to be anxious over a paper, proper preparation reduces such anxiety so that your mind remains focused. Some common signs of distress include inattentiveness, feeling blank, headache, increased heart rate and nausea. The following strategies will help you know how to handle such symptoms during a test so that you can maintain high performance.

Come up With Useful Study Habits

Avoid being the deadline student who gets confused about what course to prioritize at the last minute. With so many courses in one semester, you need a plan on how you should revise for each session as the semester begins. Instead of idling around the school compound enjoying life, find constructive friends and create a study group. Form a schedule for you and your study buddies to meet for group discussions regularly. This will help you understand something that a teacher may have rushed on in class.

Sharing ideas will also help you put concepts in real life scenarios so that you can have relevant examples in a test. You can also form a habit of taking notes in class. Even when the teacher uses slides and leaves class notes on the class email, there are some things that he might say that you won’t find in the notes. Jot down what you feel is important so that you can refer back later.

Avoid Cramming

Reduce stress by preparing early enough for your exams. Your brain cannot accommodate everything all at once. Cramming brings uncertainty and tension since you are likely to forget even the concepts that you were sure about. Spending a whole night cramming affects your nerves thus increase stress in the morning. Even if you are a bright student, take some time to read outside class so that your exam does not make you sweat.

Come up with ways of improving your memory so that you won’t feel the need to cram. Create mnemonics to help you remember concepts that you forget quickly. Regular reviewing of your notes prevents you from forgetting so that you don’t have to cram.

Stay Focused

Being in school comes with distractions from your friends. You may find it hard to concentrate on your studies while there is so much to do. Remember that the primary goal in school is to pass exams. Therefore, know how to prioritize your studies above everything else. Be the lady who sits in front in class so that you can concentrate during lectures. Do not feel intimidated to ask your lecturer questions if you don’t understand something. Your friends may find this weird but learn from you at the end of the semester when you beat them in exams.

Do Not Hesitate to Get Help

If you are the kind of student who believes in drugs to pass exams, you are ruining your life. Save yourself from addiction by visiting https://www.therecoveryvillage.com/local-rehab-resources/colorado/castle-rock/. This center will help you find better ways of dealing with anxiety as you detox from drugs. When you get back to school, avoid peer pressure from friends who try to sell you pills for you to stay focused while studying. Talk to a counselor if you are too anxious to sit for a paper and let them help you prepare better for exams.

Learn From Your Mistakes

Man is to err and no matter the pressure to succeed, sometimes we fail. Take failure positively and correct your errors so that you can do better on your next test. Instead of feeling sad, find answers where you went wrong on a test and take criticism positively. Let every situation be a learning experience for you.

Remain Relaxed

Taking a hard test is not the end of life. Ensure that you have everything ready a before your exam. Get to the room early so that you can get a spot that makes you comfortable. Avoid being late to an exam room since rushing makes you more nervous. Learn to relax by breathing before you start your paper. Switch your thoughts to something different so that you can calm down. Once your mind is refreshed, you can now turn your paper and start. It is time to focus without getting anxious as you avoid anything that might distract your thoughts. Avoid fellow students who show more panic and concentrate on keeping calm.

Join a Team

Every student should be a member of at least one team. You can teach yourself baseball, handball or basketball. Such sports make you keep busy after classes so that you can improve the functioning of your brain. Ensure that you spend an evening playing your favorite game before your exam. This will give you a clear mind so that you can wake up feeling rejuvenated for your test.

Eat Something

Taking an exam while hungry is not healthy for your mind. Ensure that you eat before entering an exam room. Take fruits such as a banana to reduce stress and tension. This does not mean that you take stuff such as fries or sodas. Such foods are known to increase anxiety levels, thus, avoid them.

Final Thoughts

Every student is bound to feel some level of anxiety. What differentiates these levels is how prepared one is. Quit looking for unhealthy shortcuts to pass exams and find ways to reduce test anxiety so that you can comfortably sit for a paper without sweating excessively. Implementing the strategies outlined above will not only help you as a student but also prepare you for life challenges in future.

Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.

10 Things to Do The Summer Before College

The summer before college is a little bittersweet. You’ve just thrown your graduation cap with all of your grade school friends and are now preparing to not only say goodbye to them but also your family. It’s a weird transitional time of where you’re closing one chapter and preparing to begin another one. Here are 10 things to do the summer before college to help make the transition a little easier and fun.

#1. Contact your soon-to-be roommate (if you’re living in the dorms).

Once school begins you’ll be spending quite a bit of time with your roommate, so you might as well get to know them before school starts. Because, how awkward is it to meet someone for the first time and then sleep in the same room as them that same day? To avoid the awkwardness, you should at least talk to your roommate before the move-in day. The first step could be email (simply introduce yourself), and then maybe after a couple of back and forth you can add them on social media. But REMEMBER: while social media can be a good way to learn about the other person’s interests, hobbies, and lifestyle, it’s never the whole story. So skim, don’t stalk!

Speaking of social media…

#2. Clean up/organize your social media accounts.

Remove any old embarrassingng posts that you don’t want your roommate to see.

Make a LinkedIn account. You can find jobs/internships, network with professionals in any field, and much more. You might not use it all too much right away, but you’ll definitely see the use of it later on in your college life. (Speaking of which… you should begin your internship search NOW – trust me, it’s not too early!)

Join the Facebook page and/or follow the Twitter account for your class and stay updated! Talk to people, ask questions, and make friends before you officially start college.

#3. Make a list of things you need to buy for your college dorm.

But you might want to hold off on actually buying them until you’ve seen your dorm room.

#4. Register for classes.

Review (which means actually read through) the syllabus for each class to see if it’s something that you’d actually be interested in. Remember, this is college, where you actually pay for your classes – therefore only register for classes that you think are going to be worth your time, money, and effort!

*You might want to check the reputation of the professor before registering for a class, although you have to use your discretion with some of the reviews.*

#5. Apply for scholarships.

Most colleges offer financial assistance of some sort, including university grants, but you can always apply for outside scholarships! But before you go ahead and start applying to scholarships, master these scholarship hacks first so you don’t waste time!

#6. Look up textbooks for your classes.

Be warned: textbooks are expensive! However, there are good and bad times to buy textbooks, and TUN’s Textbook Search Engine will give you the cheapest options (new, used, or e-books) for your textbooks.

#7. Research clubs and organizations offered by your school.

Be prepared to get involved! One thing that a lot of college grads express regret over is not being involved on campus. Joining clubs and organizations is a great way to make friends and build professional relationships.

#8. Look into your school’s Study Abroad programs (highly recommended!).

Plan ahead: talk to your parents, do some research, and write down any questions you might have.

#9: Pick up your forgotten hobbies or learn new skills!

This may be picking up your guitar that’s been collecting dust in the corner of your room for years, vlogging, workout out, or learning Photoshop or Excel. Let’s face it – you probably have more time now than you’ll ever have (sorry…) so make good use of it!

#10. Take it easy.

In college, most students work over the summer, and after you graduate from college, you’ll miss the big block of free time called summer vacation. So take advantage of it. Take a road trip with some friends, go on a family vacation, and hang out with your high school friends before parting ways (even though you’re probably going to get together for Thanksgiving break, Christmas break, New Years, and basically any major Holiday or breaks)!

Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.

Careers For When You No Longer Compete

Some careers are near enough impossible to break into. What little girl hasn’t dreamt of being a pop star at some point? For the most part, we learn that these careers are out of reach early on. By the time we reach our teen years, we barely remembering wanting them. But, some dreams are harder to shake. For the sporty among us, the ideal career would, of course, be the chance to compete professionally. But, making a career as an athlete is tough. There isn’t much money in the field unless you’re top of your game. Olympians and world champions can afford to give up the day job, but that’s about it. Here’s some advice on careers for when you no longer compete.

It may be that you had some success, but never quite managed to make it big. Or, perhaps your dreams never got off the ground, and your chance has passed. It can be heartbreaking, especially if you’ve held those dreams since you were young. But, hope isn’t lost. Holding onto an impossible dream will do damage and lead to financial trouble. But, the passing of your athletic ambitions could mark the time when you start making money from sports. Why? Because you’ll be more open to alternative options. These can be as satisfying and are, for the most part, easier to achieve. Finally, you’ll be able to make an income from fitness!

Here, we’re going to look at a few of the options available. You never know; one may catch your eye.

Become A Sports Teacher

Be honest; the statement ‘those who can’t do, teach’ came into your head the moment you saw this. But, that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, teaching is an amazing way for the best athletes to spread what they know. If you want to specialize, you could work with college kids who are studying for degrees. Or, perhaps you would rather work with a variety of sports. In that case, secondary and primary education would be your best bet.

You will need a degree to make full-time teaching work for you, but studying part time means you could earn and learn at the same time. Or, you could opt to work as a supply teacher. This will mean less money, but it’ll ensure you can get straight to it. Whatever you decide, it may be worth going down this route before you commit. That way, you’ll be able to see whether this suits.

Could You Coach?

Teaching may have its merits, but when you’re dealing with a classroom full of kids, you may not get the engagement you’re after. Often, they won’t want to be there. And, the number of children you teach will make it difficult to form one on one relationships. If that’s what you’re after, you’re better off becoming a coach. Here, you’ll work with a few students individually. The chances are you’ve had plenty of coaches in your life, so you should already know what’s needed. You’ll be able to draw from your own experiences to provide coaching which works. This also has the benefit of keeping you in the athletic surroundings you love. With a bit of luck, your clients will lead you to those same rooms you competed in during your youth.

Go Down A Clinical Route

A clinical route to sports may take you away from the field, but it’s well worth considering. You could opt to specialize in helping rehabilitate sporting injuries. Here, you’ll need to develop your understanding of body and recovery. Using physical therapy, you’ll be responsible for getting athletes back up and running.

Or, perhaps you’d rather go down the psychological route. Sports psychologists stand to make a lot of money if they’re successful. Plus, this opportunity would reveal to you a whole new side of this thing you’ve loved since you were young. Bearing in mind that you would need to study to qualify for this role. But, something like an online Master of Science in Psychology would allow you to study when it suits. That way, you could complete your course in a shorter or longer period, depending on your needs.

Become An Event Organizer

Or, perhaps you’re ready to take a step back. Being at the forefront can be exhausting, and you may well have had enough. It’s possible to move from the limelight and remain within the environment you’ve come to know. Becoming an organizer for athletic events means you can sit back and enjoy the ride without having to worry about getting too physical.

Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.

Freshers Flu: Tips To Avoid Getting Sick While At College

It doesn’t matter if it’s the party the entire quad has been talking about for weeks, a date with that special someone you’ve been crushing on since last semester or the night before a big exam- if you’re sick you’re going nowhere. It’s estimated that a good ten percent of incoming students will fall ill in their first few months on campus; missing out on important seminars and great nights out. However, don’t despair as we’ve got a few hints to avoid getting sick at college!

Read the Post

Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.

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