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Monday, February 16, 2009

College Survival Tip #1

Refrain from asking your college professors "Do I have to do this?"

My answer will always be, "You do not have to do anything but die, for even paying taxes is optional and you can always choose jail."

Often times students refuse to complete an assignment unless the professor specifically requires it. In essence, if the instructor fails to designate a grade to an assignment, then students feel no need to complete it. Teachers do not assign activities or homework to torture students and keep them busy. Practice activities provide needed review and serve as support for everything else a student does in the class.

So if you are wondering if you "have to" practice, then again my answer would be, "there are no "have to's" only "want to's." Avoid a negative attitude toward an assignment or a course in general. When you pose such questions directly to the professor, you send out a negative vibe that may not actually reflect your true feelings or desires.

Try radiating enthusiasm and interest for the subject; show eagerness to learn, practice, interact and explore new ideas. As long as your teacher respects your basic Constitutional Rights, there is no reason to be combative or negative. After all, college is like training camp for athletes. You can practice, make mistakes, learn, adapt, improve, fail or excel. In the end you make the top of the list or you are eliminated from the team.

You ultimately decide what you do or do not have to do. You decide your path, your own victories and your own defeats.


  1. What a different time. During my school/college years, none of us would ever assume we didn't have to complete an assignment. Yes, you do decide your own path and hard work is part of the journey.

  2. Along with "Do we have to do this?" I also like "Did we do anything important in class yesterday?" when they missed class. I often felt like answering, "No, I just showed slides of my summer vacation."

  3. Believe it or not ladies, I hear this all the time.

    The "did I miss anything from class" is also another popular question. Instead of getting upset at the students, I thought it would be more constructive to just tell them what these questions suggest to us -the teachers. There is so much that as a student I wish someone would have told me but no one ever did. Sometimes, we are unaware of how our words and actions impact others. It's not a bad thing to be reminded every now and then of all the opportunities we have especially in this great country. My motto "Always do great things."

  4. I like your motto..."Always do great things".

    I've always been one of those who attended class finished assignments on time etc., I could never understand those who didn't. I felt these students wasted their money and everyone's is a wonderful thing we should never take for granted or waste it!

  5. I attended all classes and completed all my assignments regardless. For classes I love, eg English writing, I even asked my prof for extra assignments and to critique pieces I'd written outside of class.

  6. Heather and Clarity

    No two human beings are ever completely alike. I understand that. The passion for learning lives inside of many of us. I hope that in some way we educators can help others develop a hunger for knowledge and information developing a community of independent thinkers.


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