Advising Right Now: Helping Advisees Improve Performance
There may be a number of factors that are impeding a student's progress. The biggest problems for most freshmen are ineffective study habits, poor time management, and an inability to ask for help. However, some students may be struggling with personal, social, or mental health-related issues and need to connect with helping resources.
As you work together on a plan for improving performance, you and the student might wish to review ACADEX, a virtual learning strategies website with comprehensive information and advice on many aspects of adjusting to being a new college learner.
- Successful studying for technical subjects means that students have to spread their workload out over several days. See tips on time management and effective study habits.
- If the student is easily distracted or has other problems with studying his hi/her room, suggest that s/he find a quiet, distraction-free place to study.
- Effective studying also requires concentration and focus. Suggest to the student that s/he turn off electronic messaging and cellphone activity while studying.
- Should the student drop one of the classes in which s/he is struggling? Making the decision to strategically drop one subject in order to maximize performance in the others may make good sense. Help the student assess the pros and cons of keeping or dropping a subject.
- Some students may also be struggling with personal, social, or mental health-related issues. It is important for the student to address the issues now. Encourage him/her to set up a meeting with Student Support Services (S3). The S3 deans provide support and help for a multitude of problems, from study-related anxiety through personal or financial issues; they can make referrals to other support services and advocate on behalf of the student as necessary.