High School vs. College

PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION


 

RESPONSIBILITY IN HIGH SCHOOL

CHOOSING RESPONSIBLY IN COLLEGE

* High school is mandatory and usually free.

* College is voluntary and expensive.

* Your time is structured by others.

* You manage your own time.

* You can count on parents and teachers to remind you of your responsibilities and to guide you in setting priorities.

* You must balance your responsibilities and set priorities.

* You are not responsible for knowing what it takes to graduate.

* Graduation requirements are complex, and differ from year to year. You are expected to know those that apply to you.

GOING TO HIGH SCHOOL CLASSES

SUCCEEDING IN COLLEGE CLASSES

* Classes often extend for the whole school year.

* The academic year is divided into two separate 15-week semesters, plus a week after each semester for exams.

* Classes are generally small.

* Classes will vary in size, from small to large.

* Each day you proceed from one class directly to another, spending 6 hours each day--30 hours a week--in class.

* You often have hours between classes; class times vary throughout the day and evening, and you spend only 12 to 16 hours each week in class

* Most of your classes are arranged for you.

* You arrange your own schedule in consultation with your adviser.

* You may study little outside of class, and sometimes listening in class is enough.

* You need to study at least 2 to 3 hours outside of class for each hour in class. Review class notes and text material regularly.

* You are expected to read short assignments that are then discussed, and often re-taught, in class.

* You are assigned substantial amounts of reading and writing which may not be directly addressed in class.

HIGH SCHOOL TEACHERS

COLLEGE PROFESSORS

* Teachers check your completed homework and remind you of your incomplete work.

* Professors may not always check completed homework, but expect you to perform the same tasks on tests. Professors may not remind you of incomplete work.

* Teachers approach you if they believe you need assistance.

* Professors are usually open and helpful, but most expect you to initiate contact if you need assistance.  Professors want you to attend their scheduled office hours.

* Teachers provide you with information you missed when you were absent.

* Professors expect you to get from classmates any notes from classes you missed.

* Teachers present material to help you understand the material in the textbook.

* Professors may not follow the textbook. They may expect you to relate the classes to the textbook readings.

* Teachers often write information on the board to be copied in your notes.

* When professors write on the board, it may be to amplify the lecture, not to summarize it.  Professors expect you to identify the important points in your notes.

* Teachers often take time to remind you of assignments and due dates.

* Each course has its own unique syllabus, which spells out exactly what is expected of you, when it is due, and how you will be graded. Professors expect you to read and consult the course syllabus often.

* Teachers carefully monitor class attendance.

* Professors may not formally take roll, but they are still likely to know whether or not you attended.

GRADES AND TESTS IN HIGH SCHOOL

GRADES AND TESTS IN COLLEGE

* Testing is frequent and covers small amounts of material.

* Testing is usually infrequent and may cover a lot of material.  A particular course may have only 2 or 3 tests in a semester.

* Teachers frequently conduct review sessions, pointing out the most important concepts.

* Study groups are mostly organized by students.  You, not the professor, need to organize the material to prepare for the test.

* Grades are given for most assigned work.

* Work is often assigned, but not graded.

* Test grades may not have an adverse effect on your final grade.

* Tests may account for a substantial part of your course grade.

* You may graduate as long as you have passed all required courses with a grade of D or higher.

* You may graduate only if your average in classes meets the departmental standard--typically a 2.0 or C.

This chart is taken from http://www.umt.edu/freshman/transition.htm

OUR KEY POINTS:

  • Take control of your own education: Think of yourself as a scholar.
  • Get to know your professors. They are your single greatest resource.
  • Be assertive. Create your own support systems, and seek help when you realize you may need it.

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