Friday, October 31, 2014

How to Use a Syllabus.....Correctly

      With 4 classes, we get a lot of syllabi. Most of time we get them the first week of classes, otherwise known as syllabus week. I love syllabus'. They save my life more times than I can count. Sadly, a lot of students don't get all the benefits from a syllabus because they don't know how to correctly read them.
      I know that the semester is coming to a close soon (eeeekkk!!), but hopefully this will help in the following weeks along with the semesters to come! Here are some of my tips!

ONE// Use it to finish projects early. As a media studies major, my life is consumed with projects. When your semester is jam packed, it is really useful to get started (and finished) with things early. Towards the end of the semester all of my classes pile up. Typically, I will have at least one major thing due for each class at the end of the semester. This two week period is actually the worst, but there are ways to avoid it and utilizing your syllabus is one of them! Find projects that you can finish early on weeks when you don't really have that much work so when it comes to the end of the semester you have less on your plate!

TWO// Schedule your life. A syllabus is not just used to tell you what you will be doing in class that semester. They are given to you to kind of give you a heads up on how much time you will need to commit to that class during the semester. Your whole college career isn't all about school, but it plays a major part. Prep your semester by using your syllabus!

THREE//Don't just use the syllabus for important dates, use a planner too! I love planners, you know that. (I wrote a post about how I organize my life. Check it out HERE) When reading the syllabus, make sure you have your planner handy to write down when important assignments are due. I am the first one to admit that I lose things sometimes. By writing down important dates in my planner I am covered if I lose my syllabus.

FOUR//Create to-do lists from it! This is my normal task on Sunday. I sit down and look at my syllabus for each class and make a list of all the things that I need to do that week. It helps to prepare me for the week so I know what I have to do and when. Sometimes I will do it for two weeks at a time. One week may be busy while the other may be a little slower. If that happens, I normally plan ahead and get other things done (see number 1!). When I complete something on my syllabus, I either will highlight it or cross it off. It makes it easier to quickly look at when I have too!

     I hope this helps when you feel a little stressed. A syllabus for a class is literally my best friend and I treat it like one! Professors often spend a lot of time creating them, so take good care to them and use them. I promise, you won't be disappointed!


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