Posts Tagged ‘college’

Goal Setting: Staying on Track

Categories: College Life

Goal Setting: Staying on Track

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A new semester is an exciting time when you are reunited with your friends after a few weeks or a few months apart. As you take the time to get back into the swing of things, it’s important to remember your goals so you can stay on track. While you may have an idea of what your broad goals for yourself are throughout your four years in college, breaking it down into smaller increments per year or per semester will help you achieve your dreams.

Make It Realistic

The most important part of setting goals for yourself is making sure they are actually realistic and attainable. This will ensure that you can accomplish what you set out to accomplish, and get the proud feeling you wanted when it’s all over. If your goals are not actually achievable, you may be setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. You may want to lose 100 pounds or finish your pre-med requirements in one semester, but it may be a better goal to give yourself a reasonable amount of time to complete these accomplishments.

Make A Plan

If you have a specific game plan, it will be easier to make it happen. As students, we work best when we have a schedule, and keeping yourself on a strict schedule is a way to ensure you can achieve your goals AND have time to spend with friends and for other commitments. Again, it is important to make your goals achievable and balance your time so that you don’t mentally crash. Try giving yourself a deadline to work within—the time constraint will help you remember why your goal is important and why you set it for yourself in the first place.

With all of the distractions that the college environment has to offer, it is very easy to get distracted. Making a solid plan will help you plan ahead so you can do everything that is important to you throughout the year while still staying on track. You don’t want to have to study during the big game or have to cram 20 chapters of reading in the night before a final exam.

Reward Yourself

When you reach your goal, reward yourself! You’ve worked hard and you deserve it. Self-satisfaction is a huge motivator for continued personal achievements, and it is important to celebrate it. Meet up with friends at your favorite restaurant or local hangout and take some time to relax before you move on to your next goal.

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eBooks Enter the College Classroom

E-books Enter the College Classroom

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With the technology craze and increased use of tablets in high school classrooms, universities across America have also turned to new-age educational options. A new kind of textbook has been created called an e-book that students can read on the Internet, effectively saving them money and the hassle of carrying around large, heavy books.

Students and teachers at Cornell University, Indiana University at Bloomington, the University of Minnesota, University of Virginia, and University of Wisconsin at Madison took place in a pilot program in the spring of 2012. The study analyzed e-book projects and the commentary of those involved. While inventors expected the technology to take off, it has received mixed reviews during the tests.

“Students praised the e-books for helping them save money but didn’t like reading on electronic devices. Many of them complained that the e-book platform was hard to navigate. In addition, most professors who responded said that they didn’t use the e-books’ collaborative features, which include the ability to share notes or create links within the text,” according to an article in The Chronicle.

However, Bradley C. Wheeler, the vice president for information technology for Indiana University and the e-books’ creator, is optimistic that the attitude toward the technology will change with time.

“With technology, many things change with repeated use,” Wheeler said. “People have lots of early first impressions as they experience new things, and over time you will start to see things become more mainstream, as the technology improves and skills and even attitudes toward use improve.”

When asked, students reported that e-books did not help them improve interactions with professors or other classmates because they did not utilize the technology’s collaborative features.

The pilot program had six major findings:

- Only 12 percent of users chose to buy a hard copy of the e-book
- Lower cost and portability were considered the most important variables affecting students’ decision of whether or not to purchase eTexts in the future
- Students frequently mentioned devices’ functionality and the difficulties they had reading the text
- Faculty did not report using the enhanced features and voiced a need for more training to increase the potential for student-student or student-teacher collaboration
- Students voiced concerns about the inability to access the e-texts without an Internet connection.

The pilot program will continue to grow in the fall with twenty-four new universities joining the roster for testing.

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Even in Tough Economy, Earning College Degree Important as Ever

Earning College Degree Still Important

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In the midst of a bad economy, you may be wondering, “Is a college degree worth it? It is that important?” Rest assured, experts still assert that a college degree is your best asset when trying to join the workforce. While students with college degrees are often having trouble finding jobs, let alone jobs pertaining to their university major, people who do not have college degrees are having an even harder time.

According to a new research study published by Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, the majority of jobs lost in the recession were held by workers who did not have a college degree (.pdf).

“The recession hit those with less schooling disproportionately hard—nearly four out of five jobs lost were held by those with no formal education beyond high school,” the introduction to the report said. “At the other end of the spectrum, workers who had completed a four-year college degree or higher were largely protected against job losses during the recession and some high-education fields even had job gains. The job recovery has only increased the divide between the less-educated and more-educated.”

With rising tuition costs and high unemployment rates across the country, many people began to question whether or not a college degree is really important. The study found that graduating from college remains an individual’s best ally in the job market.

Since the economy began a recovery phase, 3.4 million jobs have been added to the workforce. The study reports that all of the gains made were found in individuals who had received at least some level of college education. Students who had received a Bachelor’s degree found 2 million new jobs, and 91 percent of individuals who have an Associate’s degree have recovered the jobs they had before the recession.

Other factors of employment were also discussed, such as gender disparity and post-recession job gains.

“Although women still outnumber men among students enrolled in four-year colleges and graduate programs, the rate of men enrolling in college increased significantly during and after the recession. Though the differences between enrollment growth rates for men and women are marginal, the changes were taking place in the right direction. As a result, instead of a widening gap of college enrollment between men and women, enrollment levels of men and women are expected to parallel each other in the future,” the study said.

Although times may be tough, the benefits of education are indisputable, and experts urge high school seniors to attend college after graduation and attain the highest degree possible. This will ensure that students are well-equipped to find a job and become contributing members of society.

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