Prepare Yourself For Going Back To College
2010 is no different from any other year as summer draws to a close and autumn begin. With the fall season comes the beginning of a new school term. Many students who are returning to college may find themselves feeling overwhelmed by the thought of the new school year and are searching for the best ways to cope with stress and frustration that can be brought on by academics. A proven method for building certainty is to know exactly what you’re getting into and exploring all of your alternatives, including the online degree.
Going back to college as an adult can seem like a particularly daunting task. It doesn’t matter whether you haven’t stepped foot in an academic institution since high school or if you’ve got some college experience and now you’re coming back, it can still be scary. Fortunately, you can stand up straight, put your shoulders back, and recognize that you’re not the first grown-up to come back to school and you definitely won’t be alone. There’s no reason to be frightened by something tons of people have already completed!
Part of what’s so nerve-wracking about going back to school as an adult is what you psych yourself out for. You may get completely wrapped up in the fact that you’re older than the “typical” college student – in fact, many adults who are returning to school do. Instead of worrying about whether a bunch of teenagers are going to judge you for your age, focus on your academic goals and being the best student you can. What you contribute to the classroom is going to be a lot more important to your GPA than if you’re a little bit older than your classmates.
Many adults make excuses about what makes returning to college an impossibility, and high up on the list is that adhering to a school schedule is too hard. Getting back to the routine of studying regularly, taking exams and completing homework seems just too far removed from your everyday life. Realistically, academic schedules are just another facet of real world schedules: you wake up, drink some coffee, and get to work on time. Studying, homework and exams aren’t an alien world; they’re just another set of tasks to accomplish, albeit out of your normal comfort zone.
One of the most valuable skills you can hone as a returning student is the study skill. Here’s the secret to college that many students don’t figure out until they’re almost done: sitting down every night and spending some time with the course material is one of the best things you can do for your GPA. Study skills don’t have to involve complicated outlines or thousands of index cards; sometimes simply taking the time to absorb, process and understand the material is the best first step you could take.
College applications don’t need to be a source of stress for you, either. They certainly should not deter you from returning to school to earn your degree! Advisors are in place at every single college to help you with scheduling and application questions. Applications themselves are amazingly uncomplicated – at worst, they simply require basic information about your identity and residency. Nowadays, everything from researching online classes to filling out college applications can be done online!
Probably the biggest worry that returning students have encompasses study habits and feeling out of place. That concern is the cost of school. Let’s face it, tuition isn’t cheap. However, the amounts of federal and private options for financial aid are so numerous that it doesn’t have to break your bank. A college degree can be affordable; all you have to do is be willing to take the time to research your options and apply for the most applicable ones. Scholarships, grants and loans are all available to assist with your tuition needs.
Returning students may have a number of fears about stepping foot back onto a college campus or starting that first online course. With a clear head and a combination of foresight and knowledge, returning students can conquer every single one of these fears with no problem. In the end, the only focus that you need to have is on stepping off of a stage with your degree in hand!