Tag Archives: Five Steps for Success

Five Strategies, Five Weeks

11 Nov

Sit back. Breathe in. Breathe out. Let’s take a break from our busy, stress-filled lives and focus our energy on finishing this semester. With only five more weeks of school, where should your energy go? What’s your plan of action?

Let’s make a plan together for these next five weeks. We’ll go week by week, and I’ll give you some of my ideas as to what should be done. Think of me like your personal trainer. I’m Mickey and you are Rocky. Except, instead of a ring, it’s a classroom. I’ve had my fair share of rough semesters, but here are some ways I have been able to still come out on top!


I may not know how to train you to go toe-to-toe with Clubber Lang, but if the goal is to be successful in your semester, then call me Apollo! I’m your guy!

1. What Do I Have? – First thing we need to do; let’s look through everything we have. Go through each one of your classes and pull out any exams, papers or homework you have gotten back. While you’re gathering any papers you may have, start to organize them. Put them in order and start taking note of any questions you have about your work. Is it all here? Did you miss any assignments? Were you unsure about the grading on some assignments? Take note and WRITE IT DOWN. This will help us for next week where we’ll get our questions answered at…

2. Office Hours! – Going in to office hours is much like going to see your doctor. You may notice something is wrong with your body. Maybe your knee has been getting really sore lately, or maybe your eyesight is getting a little blurry. But you are tough, you don’t need a doctor! Next thing you know you need a knee replacement and corrective eye surgery. DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU! Take the upper hand and be proactive if you notice something is not quite right. If you don’t understand a particular subject in a class, ignoring it won’t make it go away. This is why we took notes on all our assignments and organized them neatly last week. We have taken notice of what needs to be brought to our attention and now we can just go through the list with the Professor or TA in office hours. Maybe you should start making lists for the doctor’s office? Hypochondriac? Nahhh.


3. The (still probably not very) calm before the storm! – What we need to do is plan out our final assignments and exams. Do you have a paper coming up? Now is the time to gather resources and start the initial process of getting that paper together (I recommend the Assignment Scheduler on the UA Libraries Web site). You may also have an exam coming up as well. Use this time to STUDY. You’ve already gone to office hours though, so you should know what needs to be studied.

4. What DON’T I know? — Alright, we know what’s coming up and we know what we need. I guess now we just need to know what we need to know! Let’s find the help we need! Who can help? (of course your professor can, but we’ve talked about them enough). Your fellow students! I thoroughly enjoy putting together study groups. It’s a great way to be productive in a positive, or at least collective, atmosphere and to make friends along the way! And smart friends at that! 😉 Now, if group environments aren’t your forte, individual tutoring is ALWAYS an option for ANYONE. The ThinkTank is a free resource to get individualized attention and help. With both drop-in hours and appointments available, the ThinkTank is sure to have what you need. Also, be sure to remember ALL the ThinkTank locations. You may be surprised by the number they have and where they are.


No one is more willing to help than your friends!

5. Okay, Everyone. The time has come. Finals week. — What do we need to do? RELAX. Were you reading the rest of this blog? We just had a hell of a past couple weeks, and with all the work we put in, we deserve a break! We should still do some light studying on any subjects we may still not be 100% confident about, and complete any small assignments we still need to turn in. If you do your work like we’ve been talking about, you should be more than ready going in to finals week. So, go with your head held high. You’ve done a lot of work to get to this point. Be proud of it! And be ready to show them what you’re made of!


YOU, after finishing your final!

Before I go, I want to leave you with ONE more piece of advice, rather, a request. No, a demand. I want you to take ONE day out of each week and devote it to yourself. DO THE BASICS. Eat, Exercise, do laundry! Clean your house, take out the trash, whatever you need to do to keep yourself happy and healthy, do it. Don’t forget to take care of yourselves these next couple weeks; it’s really easy to get lost in the madness of it all.

-Andy Gonzalez