Some Academic     Survival Skills   or

How to Succeed in Biology Class without Really Trying

3.  Be a Good Reader -

4.  Be an Active Listener -

5.  Get Involved in class room discussions -

               Think about the topics which may be discussed in class each day.

        6.  Take Good Lecture Notes -

             Develop your own Note Taking System.......
                      First, record main points/key your own words
                               "Do not write down everything that is said"
                      Outline, underline, use key words.....
                      Devise your own abbreviation system for common words, etc.....
                      Leave a wide left add additional notes later
              Listen for clues....key words - speaker will offer lots of hints
                      especially, changes in tone or voice inflections.............
                                     "major cause of x is y"
                                     "you should remember this because......."
              Copy all material written by a speaker on blackboard or overhead
              Always date each page
              Make an Outline and Summary


        7.  RECOPY your Lecture Notes -

             ...because it is impossible to write everything down in lecture.
             Supplement your 2nd notebook with material from book, glossary term, etc....
             Taking notes from the book:
                     get the big picture first .... what is chapter's main theme
                     summarize each section of chapter's key points

         8.  Go Over your 2nd Notebook at Least Once a Week -

             ...because it will keep the ideas and concepts fresh in your mind.

   9.  Form a Study Group -

             ...because sharing ideas, thoughts, and what you have learned will
                          re-enforce your learning.
             What you have missed will be filled in by your study partners.

        10.  Learn How to Study -

        11a.  Prepare for Exams -

    if you were training for an athletic event.....

11b.  Taking the Exam -

             READ the DIRECTIONS carefully
                        "Pick the BEST choice from those given"........
                               doesn't mean that all the choices given are absolute truths,
                                only that there is one better answer from all those given.....
             Decide how much time to spend on each question
             Read each questions TWICE before answering
             Skip difficult questions and come back
             Pay close attention to qualifiers....usually, none, always
             read all of the answer choices given before you pick an answer

        12.  Make all A's and become a great Scientific Success.

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copyright c2002, Charles Mallery, Department of Biology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 33124
Figures from "A Scriptographic Booklet" by Channing L. Bete Co., Inc., So. Deerfield, MA 01373
Last Update -28 August 2002