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In the world, an area that has seen much investment is education. Knowledge or education was considered the "third eye" of man which gives him an insight into all affairs. So many people from different age group spend a lot of their time, money and efforts in pursuing education in various institutions of learning. Years spent in primary, secondary schools, colleges and universities are almost have a lifetime in this case, therefore returns from such an investment should be high enough to warrant such effort. Education is an investment to development, and poor study methods should not compromise the mandate of higher education institution to generate, preserve and disseminate knowledge and produce high quality graduates. Universities admit students with varying backgrounds in terms of learning/study styles, levels of preparedness and concepts of university education. Some were "drilled", taught for exams, or have wrong purpose / values of university learning. These negatively have impact on their study skills and achievement. In complementing the role played by academic staffs, students need to be conscious of their study personality and study ethics as they influence studying. It is futile to teach well while students lack the fundamentals to conceptualize and internalize the new knowledge. Many times, college students have not had to manage their time efficiently prior to college because they are bright and rarely challenged in high school. So some students who had 'A's and 'B's start receiving supplementary exams and score C's and D's in college. According to the National Commission on Excellence in Education (1984), many students are unsuccessful in school because they lack effective study skills. To counter this, the commission recommends that study skills be introduced to students very early in the schooling process and continue throughout a student's educational career. In a now classic study of study skills, (Entwistle, 1960) reported that students who voluntarily took a study skills course were more successful academically than similar students who did not voluntarily take the course. (butcofsky, 1971) reported that students who have difficulty in college frequently have inadequate study habits that affect their academic achievement. A central problem, he noted, was that many of these students had not learned how to take effective notes and manage time for studying. To attain an effective study in higher education we sometimes need guidelines and have to follow some certain rules. We need to have contact with students in our classes and faculty, as students and faculty members; we have spent most of our school lives trying to understand ourselves, and our institutions. And have conducted a little research on higher education with dedicated students in a wide range of schools. We draw the implications of this report, hoping to help us all do better, as we emphasizes time on task, respect diverse talents and ways of learning, encourage active learning, communicate high expectations and several of them. But the ways different institutions implement good practice depends very much on their students and their circumstances. In what follows, we describe several different approaches to good practice that have been used in different kinds of settings in the last few years.
2.0 ECOURAGE CONTACT BETWEEN STUDENTS AND FACULTY
Frequent student-faculty contact in and out of classes is the most important factor in student motivation and involvement. Faculty concern helps students get through rough times and keep on working. Knowing a few faculty members well enhances students' intellectual commitment and encourages them to think about their own values and future plans.
Organizing seminars for freshmen on important topics and these topics will be taught by senior faculty members, this helps in establishing an early connection between the fresh and senior students and the faculty in many colleges and universities. Faculty members who lead discussion groups in courses outside their fields of specialization model for students what it means to be a learner. (Arthur & Zelda, 1987) In the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, three out of four undergraduates have joined three-quarters of the faculty as junior research colleagues in recent years. At Sinclair Community College, students in the "College without Walls" program have pursued studies through learning contracts. Each student has created a "resource group,' which includes a faculty member, a student peer, and two "community resource" faculty members. This group then provides support and assures quality
3.0 DEVELOPS RECIPROCITY AND COOPERATION AMONG STUDENTS
Learning is enhanced when it is more like a team effort than a solo race. Good learning, like good work, is collaborative and social, not competitive and isolated. Working with others often increases involvement in learning. Sharing one's own ideas and responding to others' reactions sharpens thinking and deepens understanding. Even in large lecture classes, students can learn from one another. Learning groups are a common practice, in which five to seven students meet regularly during class throughout the term to solve problems set by the instructor. Many colleges use peer tutors for students who need special help.
Learning communities are another popular way of getting students to work together. Students involved in Learning Communities can take several courses together. The courses, on topics related to a common theme like science, technology, and human values, are from different disciplines. Faculties teaching the courses coordinate their activities while another faculty member, called a "master learner:' takes the courses with the students. Under the direction of the master learner, students run a seminar which helps them integrate ideas from the separate courses.
Academic success or failure can generate the feelings of competence or incompetence in students. These feelings can affect students' performances by their willingness to continue to learn or give up. (Haynes, 1993) "It is believed that students who have high achievement expectations attribute success to internal and external causes". There are several strategies that can be used to motivate students to learn. (Tonjes & Zintz , 1981) (1) "Identify student's interests and choosing materials that meet the interests, abilities, and attitudes of the students". Teachers should be able to identify what the students are interested in so they can help them choose motivate them on acquiring that interest. (2) Give clear objectives of the lessons and assignments. (3) (Mutsotso & Abenga, 2010) "Allow students to choose the task and materials to complete the task".
5.0 COMMUNICATE HIGH EXPECTATION
Expect more and you will get more. High expectations are important for everyone, for the poorly prepared, for those unwilling to exert themselves, and for the bright and well-motivated. Expecting students to perform well becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy when teachers and institutions hold high expectations of them and make extra efforts. E.g. (Arthur & Zelda, 1987) in many colleges and universities, students with poor past records or test scores do extraordinary work. Sometimes they outperform students with good preparation. The University of Wisconsin-Parkside has communicated high expectations for underprepared high school students by bringing them to the university for workshops in academic subjects, study skills, test taking, and time management. In order to reinforce high expectations, the program involves parents and high school counselors
6.0 ACADEMIC INVOLVEMENT
Defined as a complex of self-reported traits and behaviors (e.g., the extent to which students work hard at their studies, the number of hours they spend studying, the degree of interest in their courses, good study habits), academic involvement produces an unusual pattern of effects. Intense academic involvement tends to retard those changes in personality and behavior that normally result from college attendance. Thus, students who are deeply involved academically are less likely than average students to show increases in liberalism, hedonism, artistic interests, and religious apostasy or decreases in business interests.
7.0 ACTIVE LEARNING
Learning is not a spectator sport. Students do not learn much just by sitting in classes listening to teachers, memorizing prepackaged assignments, and spitting out answers. They must talk about what they are learning, write about it, relate it to past experiences and apply it to their daily lives. They must make what they learn part of themselves. Active learning is encouraged in classes that use structured exercises, challenging discussions, team projects, and peer critiques. Active learning can also occur outside the classroom. There are thousands of internships, independent study, and cooperative job programs across the country in all kinds of colleges and universities, in all kinds of fields, for all kinds of students. Students also can help design and teach courses or parts of courses. At Brown University, faculty members and students have designed new courses on contemporary issues and universal themes; the students then help the professors as teaching assistants. At the State University of New York at Cortland, beginning students in a general chemistry lab have worked in small groups to design lab procedures rather than repeat restructured exercises. At the University of Michigan's Residential College, teams of students periodically work with faculty members on a long-term original research project in the social sciences.
8.0 TIME MANAGEMENT AND HANDLING STRESS
(Alexander, 1999) College administrators are constantly preoccupied with the accumulation and allocation of fiscal resources; the theory of student involvement, however, suggests that the most precious institutional resource may be student time. According to the theory, the extent to which students can achieve particular developmental goals is a direct function of the time and effort they devote to activities designed to produce these gains. For example, if increased knowledge and understanding of history is an important goal for history majors, the extent to which students reach this goal is a direct function of the time they spend at such activities as listening to professor's talk about history, reading books about history, and discussing history with other students. Generally, the more time students spend in these activities, the more history they learn.
Stress is any situation that evokes negative thoughts and feelings in a person. The same situation is not evocative or stressful for all people, and all people do not experience the same negative thoughts and feelings when stressed. One model that is useful in understanding stress among students is the person-environmental model. (Lazarus, 1966) According to one variation of this model, stressful events can be appraised by an individual as "challenging" or "threatening". When students appraise their education as a challenge, stress can bring them a sense of competence and an increased capacity to learn. When education is seen as a threat, however, stress can elicit feelings of helplessness and a foreboding sense of loss.
A critical issue concerning stress among students is its effect on learning. (The Yerkes-Dodson law 1908) postulates that individuals under low and high stress learn the least, and that those under moderate stress learn the most. A field study and laboratory tests support the notion that excessive stress is harmful to students' performance.
Mechanisms that explain why students perform badly under stress include "hyper vigilance" (excessive alertness to a stressful situation resulting in panic--for example, over studying for an exam) and "premature closure" (quickly choosing a solution to end a stressful situation, for example, rushing through an exam).
Students react to Higher Education in a variety of ways. For some students, college or the University is stressful because it is an abrupt change from high school. For others, separation from home is a source of stress. Although some stress is necessary for personal growth to occur, the amount of stress can overwhelm a student and affect the ability to cope.
TIME ON TASK
Time plus energy equals learning. There is no substitute for time on task. Learning to use one's time well is critical for students and professionals alike. Students need help in learning effective time management. Allocating realistic amounts of time means effective learning for students and effective teaching for faculty. How an institution defines time expectations for students, faculty, administrators, and other professional staff can establish the basis for high performance for all. E.g. (1) (Mutsotso & Abenga, 2010) learning how to complete assignments on time will help students succeeds academically. In the "Dynamics of Effective Study" students are taught how to organize and manage time wisely. Students are taught how to schedule tasks weekly and monthly to assure success. To enhance the academic achievement of students, a study skills course was implemented in the curriculum to help students attain the GPA criteria. Freshmen have enrolled in this course since it was implemented in 1994. This study will examine the effectiveness of the course, "Dynamics of Effective Study," on the academic achievement of freshmen at this school.
(2) (Arthur & Zelda, 1987) Mastery learning, contract learning, and computer-assisted instruction require that students spend adequate amounts of time on learning. Extended periods of preparation for college also give students more time on task. Matteo Ricci College is known for its efforts to guide high school students from the ninth grade to a B.A. through a curriculum taught jointly by faculty at Seattle Preparatory school and Seattle University. Providing students with opportunities to integrate their studies into the rest of their lives helps them use time well.
As students in higher education, much is expected of us, and at the same time there are so many distractions that come our way. We need to be able to overcome this distractions, know what to do at a particular point in time, know when to get a school assignment done so that the work load won't be much, and when to attend to other things. And most importantly know when to do these things at the right time. So for us to be able to achieve these aims in due time we as students need to be able to regulate our time. For Example
You may be doing a course with modules, where each one must be completed in a semester. You might sometimes need to start assessed works before you've had all the classes, to complete it on time you need to plan yourself well
You may be doing several modules at once all with a similar deadline leading to bunching of works. If you don't plan for this you might end up under pressure.
If you leave it too late to look for essential resources, they may not be available. Advance planning is as essential as the resources
If you're doing paid work while studying, you need to fit it all together.
So many students have domestic responsibilities to fit in with course work, this also needs planning.
THINGS HIGH IN IMPORTANCE, LOW IN URGENCY.
(DAVID, 2009) For faculty and graduate students, things that are highly important but less urgent tend to include our original research and our personal relationships. Both are obviously important, and we know that. But the reality is that both of these tend not to feel as urgent as our responsibilities for a class.
For example, figuring out how to research the communication dynamics that propelled a nation to go to war is undeniably important, yet it just doesn't carry the same sense of immediacy as prepping for a class that occurs tomorrow and then again two days later, for the next eight weeks.
Similarly, going out to dinner with a close friend can always be put off until another day, right? And that's exactly what happens with things that are important but not (as) urgent -- we tend to push them to the side. As a result, many of us get the teaching and student work done first and only then turn to a focus on original research or personal time that nurtures us. If such time does not materialize, and it often doesn't, then so be it.
And that's the rub of the matter. We must make certain that we devote time to things that are highly important, but low in urgency. If we do not, the nature of the academy is that highly important, highly urgent tasks will crowd everything else out. When that occurs, burnout ensues.
Here are a few steps that we can take to make sure we give adequate priority to things high in importance and low in urgency:
Schedule them.Â If you don't schedule them, they don't happen. As a faculty member, I schedule my research time and personal activities, to make sure they happen. Otherwise they won't.
Do different things on different days of the week.Â I have found that I am best when focusing on one primary type of work task a day. That is, if I teach on Tuesday then I probably won't be much good as a researcher that day. For me, Mondays and Fridays tend to be days that I spend doing primarily research and committee work.
Believe that you will actually be a better teacher and student when you do take time to immerse yourself in what is highly important, but not (as) urgent.Â I'm entirely convinced that when I prioritize occasional pockets of personal time I enrich my teaching and research because my mind and energy are renewed.
How much a student achieves is in part dependent on the study methods that he/she applies. There is no one study method that works better for all persons. The secret lies in being able to identify personal study methods that work for each individual in given environments, conditions and circumstances. This requires knowing oneself in order to make good decisions about how to study and make time, as well as know the various strategies that can be applied.