September brings the start of the study season—for first year university students, this means new experiences and fresh opportunities. Gone are the high school days when classes were pre-determined—now students can pursue subjects that interest them and choose from a wide range of degree and diploma programs.

Yet this new-found academic freedom requires a new set of skills as well. From arranging your schedule to setting up a study plan, it’s now your responsibility to organize your education.

To help students start out on the path to success, Capilano University runs a free series of skill-based summer workshops. Make sure to catch the first two—on time management and proper note-taking techniques—on Monday, August 31.

“It’s about creating good habits from the beginning,” says Capilano University counsellor Jeff Ross. Knowing how to approach university-style learning from the onset will keep you on track and out of trouble when exams begin. “Make a decision early on about how you want your university career to run and employ those skills from the beginning,” says Jeff.

Time Management — Monday, August 31, 11:15 am-12:30 pm

You’re your own boss at university—that means it’s up to you to make sure everything gets done on time! To succeed in this new learning environment requires initiative and self-management, says Cap counsellor Keith Lam. “[Students] also need to plan for activities and responsibilities they may not have had in the past and did not think much about.”

Staying stress-free throughout your degree means learning how to balance your extracurricular commitments with class time and course work. It comes down to understanding your own work habits and being realistic about what you can get done in an hour, day or week. Knowing what works for you allows you to manage your expectations and not become overwhelmed.

This comprehensive workshop equips students with the tools and techniques to stay on track from their first class to the last. Keep in mind that time management is a fundamental skill that will lead to career success after graduation as well!

Lecture Note-Taking — Monday, August 31, 1:15 pm-2:30 pm

You might be thinking, “note-taking… how hard can that be?” But before you roll your eyes, picture this: Your instructor strides into the classroom and your first lecture begins. He is rattling off facts, examples and anecdotes in rapid-fire succession and your fingers simply cannot move fast enough to keep up. Now you’ve lost your place and your eyes dart to your neighbour’s notes to figure out what you’ve missed—it seems all hope is lost!

But, it doesn’t have to be this way.

The first lesson of lecture note-taking is that listening comes first. It’s not about transcribing word-for-word what your instructor says, but rather knowing what to write down and when to just listen. Walking this fine line is a skill best learned earlier, rather than later.

The note-taking workshop teaches students strategies that they can use before, during and after lectures to enhance learning quality and help with retention. Being able to take clean, concise notes will allow you to confidently engage in classroom discussion. It will also make studying lecture material much less daunting! It’s far easier to study only what you need to know, rather than everything that your instructor has ever said.

Get a head start on university success skills with these summer series workshops—there are more to come!

Submitted by Marketing & Communications, written by Natalie Walters

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