Advice From Previous Students

At the end of last semester, my MATH 231 students filled out a survey and offered suggestions for future students. Here are some of their best suggestions:

// Do the homework!

  • DO THE HOMEWORK. I didn’t and I should have. If it makes it easier, write on the syllabus when you get it and say “assignment: do all odd problems” or something like that. And then you act like it’s actually what’s assigned, and actually do it.
  • Make sure you do practice problems for every single section.
  • DO the homework, fill your notebook out.
  • Make sure you do the homework problems in advance.
  • Definitely definitely put effort into the homework!! You may feel like you can coast by without it but you need so much practice.
  • Make sure you not only take notes for each section, but do each homework problem for mastery of that topic.
  • Really go through the problems in every section and make sure you fully understand them all.
  • Don’t blow off the fact homework isn’t graded; you need it to be successful.
  • Always stay on top of homework, especially at the end of the semester, even if you don’t want to.
  • Whatever you do, do not underestimate the exams and make sure you do plenty of exercises at the end of each chapter.
  • If you do your homework, you will feel beyond ready for each quiz. They are easier than the difficult homework problems but doing the difficult homework problems is what makes them feel easy. You can do it as long as you don’t give up.

// Make your Notebook useful for YOU

  • Make sure you actually use your HW notebook for practice problems and keep it organized so that during tests and quizzes you can quickly find what you need.
  • Keep a detailed, updated, organized notebook.
  • Definitely do the notebook and keep it with you always.
  • Take specific and word for word notes for daily quizzes.
  • Actually take your time and fill up your notebook. The thing is a real life saver on the end of the tests and quizzes.

// Don’t fall behind!

  • Don’t get behind. Always keep your notebook up to date.
  • Get ahead as early as possible so you have leeway if you do fall behind.
  • Never not do the homework you’ll be very confused in class which will make you lose interest after you get the daily quiz wrong.

// Study in groups and in the Science and Math Learning Center

  • Study a little bit every day, and go to the Math and Tutoring center. It will help a lot.
  • Get a study buddy and try rewriting things in a way you can understand it.
  • Practice with a group and don’t slack off on just doing the notes.
  • Go to math center even if you feel like you know everything and work in groups. Keep trying hard.

// Learn to guide your own learning

  • Understand that this is a flipped class and that you have to teach yourself.
  • Study more than you think you need to.
  • Read before classes, the daily quizzes seem like a useless amount of points but they add up.
  • Show up every single day for class- never skip.
  • Ask questions in class, write on the board!
  • It’s all on you whether or not you understand a section.
  • READ THROUGH THE SECTION FULLY – don’t just do the problems.
  • Ask questions when you need it. This class is insanely supportive and student-centered, more so than you will likely ever see again. Take advantage of that.
  • Learn how to teach yourself because I didn’t know how to teach myself and struggled a lot because of it.