Education 101: How to Do Well in your College Level Science Class

Education 101: How to Do Well in your College Level Science Class

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This is an exciting time to be studying science with new discoveries being made all the time and new technologies being developed. College science courses are often intimidating to students. Don’t be afraid to be assertive and ask questions if you do not understand something. Science is a broad and diverse field full of many challenging and fascinating ideas. There are some tips to help you succeed in your science classes.

Come to Class and Take Notes

This seems like common sense, but needs to be said. There may be some courses where attendance is less necessary, however being present for science courses is extremely important. Often there will be visual examples given and elaboration on the text that are invaluable resources when trying to understand a difficult concept. Many sciences are lab based, and if you are not in class you may not receive important material and information that you need for the lab.

Do Not Skip Labs

Often lab grades are connected to the course grade as a whole, so poor performance in one may mean a lower grade in the other. The purpose of a lab is to give hands on opportunities and help provide clarity to material taught in class. Often merely attending a lab is worth a good portion of the grade, so skipping it is simply not a good idea.

Learn the Language

Knowing basic terminology and lingo of the course you are taking is extremely helpful in your quest for success. Often the concepts are quite intricate, so you do not want to get caught up with basic terminology. If you are a biology major, learn the parts of a compound microscope and review your dissection tools. If you are studying astronomy, know the parts of a telescope. If you are in a physics class, review basic physics terms such as momentum, force, energy, and power. Master new vocabulary as quickly as possible, as you will likely fall behind quickly if you find basic terms the professor uses on a daily basis to be confusing. If you come across an unfamiliar word, look it up.

Explore Outside the Classroom

Take advantage of extra lab work or even research experiments and projects that may be offered. This is especially important if you are a science major, but also helpful for those just taking a science course to fill a requirement. Future employers will see your added effort as a good sign of a strong work ethic and desire to learn. Often the extra time spent outside of class helps to bring clarity to the material covered while in class.

Do Not Cram

Pulling all-nighters or cramming material right before a test is a questionable practice with any subject, but especially futile effort with science courses. Material in science classes builds upon itself, so if you do not stay current with what you are to be learning, you will quickly fall behind and feel completely lost.

Find your Niche

Work to find a group of peers that will push you academically and you can study well with. This is sometimes not all of your best friends, as this has the potential to be distracting. Look for people with similar study habits and form a study group. This helps make studying less tedious, provides a team to help with confusing concepts, and forms a sort of accountability group for those times you really don’t feel like studying.

In an overall difficult job market, science based jobs are holding strong or even on the rise. Areas such as computer science, biomedical research, physical science, and engineering are all promising areas for new graduates. Whether you are a science major or not, chances are you will need to take some sort of science class over the course of your college experience so best to be prepared.

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Categories: Education Tips