No matter how much time away from the classroom — from a semester to a decade or more — students who come back to school after a layoff may face an adjustment period.
Gap years are becoming increasingly popular after high school or between college semesters. But for some, the break may affect their ability to relearn the rigors of studying, taking notes and the sheer volume of work.
Here are three tips to help ease the transition back to school.
1. Start with a smaller class load
Taking less classes the first semester back may ease the adjustment process for some students. Three or four fewer credit hours may be the difference between finishing the semester strong and burning out.
2. Use every resource available
Whether it’s signing up for classes, choosing a major, joining a club, finding a tutor or any other item on the school to-do list, SLCC employees are ready and available to help. In many cases, the campus information desk can point students in the right direction.
3. Take notes
Retaining information seems easy, especially at the beginning of the semester. But as more lectures are taught and students start to cram for final exams, the lessons learned early on begin to fade.
Just the act of taking notes etches the information into the brain, and increases student involvement with the subject matter as they focus on saving key information. A popular studying method is the Cornell method.
All of your experience is valuable
Anyone who has taken a gap year has likely gained a new perspective on the world around them, so take that experience and use it to succeed as a student.