Department of Music

Advice for New College Students

Students who are new to college life sometimes have difficulty adjusting to the structured nature of college-level study.

The main difference between learning in college and learning at home is that students at college must adjust their personal schedules to the class schedules for the courses for which they have enrolled.   That means that if the course you have enrolled for is scheduled to meet three days a week at 8:00 a.m. , you must be there each and every day at that time.   You can not assume or expect that the instructor will automatically make up the material with you at a later time.   While college professors are willing to assist in instances of emergency absences, they can not routinely meet with students who miss class schedules for frivolous reasons.   If you disappear from class, college instructors will not chase you down to get you to attend class.

If you are having difficulty keeping up with the pace of the class, make an appointment to see your instructor outside of class.   Often, an instructor can answer specific questions or help you find tutoring resources to assist you.   Instructors are more able to assist you if you bring possible problems to their attention.   Instructors are willing to help you through academic difficulties provided that you demonstrate initiative in trying to resolve the specifics of your situations.   Many times, instructors can refer to other specialists on campus that might have resources to assist you.

There are workshops offered on campus to help students improve their time management skills and to help develop study skills.   Your instructor or academic advisor can help find these resources if you take the initiative to ask them for this assistance.