How to Make College Students More Courageous

As educators, we know one of the best traits that can aid in success is confidence. Self-doubt can kill dreams and a lack of belief in oneself can deter anyone from achieving a goal and becoming successful. However, confidence is often something that we have or need at any given time. We need confidence, even for the smaller day to day routine things that we do. On the other hand, sometimes, we need courage to get through a situation. Courage is pushing through when things are tough or create fear. For example, it might take confidence to ace the final exam, but it takes courage to stick out a degree program when it puts finances in jeopardy, reduces work-life balance, and all your support systems are against you going for this goal.

As educators, we will see many students each year that need to build up their courage. They need our help and guidance on how to be courageous in a time of fearfulness or anxieties. Students face many life events along their four plus years with us, and to help them achieve their goal of earning a degree, we must also provide mentorship on how to be courageous.

Here are 3 ways you can guide students into being more courageous:

  1. Reduce Fears and Anxieties

If you want your students to be more courageous, remember that as a professor, your role is to teach, guide, model and inspire, not to show students how tough “the real world is.” Learning new content and balancing education with life is already hard enough, no need to instill fear on top of this. As an added bonus, as you minimize fears and anxieties, and students push through, they build confidence.

To minimize fears and anxieties in your students, there are several things you can do, here are some tips:

  • Set course expectations up front.
  • Link students to helpful resources.
  • Give them tips on what to do if they encounter technology problems.
  • Provide your contact information and answer emails/calls in less than 24 hours.
  • Give a little leeway in the event a student had a major life event occur during a specific week.
  • Humanize yourself. You can do this by sharing a little about who you are personally, doing videos in the courseroom, using humor, building rapport.
  • Don’t give negative feedback in the open forum. Use personal email or gradebook feedback.
  • Give feedback on assignments and discussion questions. This helps the student to know what they have done well with and where they can improve. No feedback leaves students in the dark as to what they can improve on and how.
  1. Encourage Students to Focus on What They Can Control

In a classroom setting, you are the authority. Students may feel intimidated at times or feel that they have limited power. Perhaps they don’t like the content, don’t understand it, or are having personal troubles while also trying to manage their education. As a professor, if you want to increase your student’s courage, help students to focus on what is in their control. This will help students persevere in the face of adversity or trials because they will realize they are not completely powerless.

Here are some tips you can share with students to help empower them to take control over their education:

  • Give students tips on avoiding procrastination
  • Share resources on balancing life and work
  • Give students tools on how to achieve better time management
  • Help students become intentional about their leaning. You can provide them with assessments that can help them better understand how they learn. (Check out the Learning Connections Inventory (LCI) through Let Me learn).
  • Share school/university resources.
  • Educate students on the importance of, and how to, build support systems and strong networks.
  • Teach students how to create SMART goals.
  • Encourage students to take an honest look at the people and activities in their lives. Then have them personally assess what/who might be best to cut versus keep in order to achieve those SMART goals.
  1. Teach Communication Skills

It takes courage to do something when you are scared or to press on in the event of pain and sadness. It is important to let students know that they are valuable and can use their voice to make a difference. By teaching students how to speak up, you empower them to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others- and that often takes a lot of courage. In today’s society, the next generation in line must be heard. They are facing extreme levels of violence and rage, but the power of speech can change that and create a positive movement. As a professor, you can also educate your students on how to speak up on less socially involved issues, but still critical aspects of a student’s life; for example, how to speak up for an advancement or say no to outside tasks that don’t fit their goals.

Here are some ways you can help students improve their communication:

  • Educate students on the importance of various communication styles (formal, informal, verbal, non verbal).
  • Provide tips on how to use social media- alongside pros and cons.
  • Provide guidance on how to listen and the value of patience.
  • Educate students on how certain words can be perceived as having self-doubt. (For example, watching how often a student leads with “I think” or “I feel” in negotiating or business).
  • Model being respectful and discuss the importance of having an open mind.
  • Provide feedback on how to be clear and concise, yet substantially answer a question.
  • Share resources, such as books, articles and videos on how to communicate with confidence.

By boosting students’ levels of courage, we are helping them to persevere through the trials and tribulations that life throw at them while they are taking a leap of faith into bettering their lives. As we boost courage, we also instill confidence. Courage and confidence are two key ingredients into helping our students reach their goals, obtain dreams and earn their degree. It is in these amazing students and their achievements that we are fortunate enough as professors to leave a bit of our legacy, behind.

The Importance Of College Textbooks To Students And How They Can Save Money On Buying Them

In history, textbooks have been used in order to ensure the consistency in the coursework which were offered to the students according to the grade level of the course requirements. In today’s textbooks, it continues to provide countless academic benefits to the students as well as the instructors. College textbooks when used in conjunction with a variety of other materials like online books, videos and as reference books provide a lot of value to a student’s education.

College textbooks were usually used in the colleges in order to be used as references for learning. These books were published in order to cover the subjects in the syllabus that the students were supposed to learn. Every college student uses different college textbooks for their subjects.

One advantage in using these books is that they provide essential information. The professors are the one reliable source of the information; the textbooks were used in order to provide more information. The reason why the professors do not always impart all of the information is due to the limits in the duration of the lessons.

The textbooks also help the students in highlighting and noting the key points. These textbooks serve as a guide for an easier understanding of the subject matter. If the students note the key points, it will make it easier for them in remembering the lessons especially during the examination periods.

They can also be used for future reference. The students may always forget what their professor had taught them. Therefore, they need textbooks in order to keep referring to; they are also a tool to refresh their memory. Also a reliable source of much information needed by the college students which will help them prepare for their thesis and term papers. These textbooks will come with instructions as well as guidance for the students on the kind of questions that they would be likely to encounter in the examination.

The books also act as an aid to the instructors as well as the professors in order to ensure that their lectures were more organized. The books as a fact, are divided into chapters, the professors find them very reliable in following these chapters and make constant references to them during their teaching. In this way, the professors were helped by these textbooks especially when checking that the students were learning the subject. By doing this the professors will know which topics that their students find difficult and will also know the ones that they have already understood.

The price of the textbooks is continuously rising and there are ways that the student can save money on them. Some stores stock the previous versions of the books and these will be available at a lower cost. It is also a good idea to have a look at the online stores that stock the books as they are normally considerably cheaper than buying from bookstores. Another way to save money is to ask students at a higher level if they have finished with their books and whether they would be willing to sell them to you at a cheap price. Most of them would be willing to do this.

What Motivates Students To Succeed In College?

In college, each student is motivated to succeed by a combination of things. That’s why it makes sense for students to discover and utilize the motivators that effectively push them forward, toward their most important goals. Here are some of the motivators that help students find success.

1. Self-Realization – College is a time when students can discover, become and experience the person they want to be. When they are motivated in this way, they will find college to be a fun and exciting time, a time when they can explore a variety of courses, join interesting clubs, participate in campus activities, meet interesting people, explore their capabilities and identify their passions. As they begin to learn and grow, they will be motivated to push those limits and find the person who resides inside.

2. Personal Satisfaction – Some students take pride in facing the challenges of college and coming through it all having done well. They are motivated internally and get a great deal of personal satisfaction from doing a good job.

3. Challenge – There are students are motivated by a challenge. They see college as a big challenge, one that requires them to fight for success. Students who have the personality, operating style and self-confidence to face and overcome challenges will do well in this environment because they won’t allow themselves to fail.

4. Fear – For some students, fear is a good motivator. These students do well in college because they don’t want to lose their scholarships, don’t want graduate without a job, don’t want to fail out and still have large loan repayments and don’t want to anger or embarrass their families.

5. Joy of Learning – Some students truly love the college environment. They enjoy learning and devour information on subjects that turn them on. They strive to become knowledge experts, thought leaders and information repositories. The need for information motivates them.

6. A Clear Purpose – When students head off to college with a clear and single-minded purpose, they are usually motivated to do well. They see college as a means to an end, one that is important to them. On the other hand, students who enter college with no clear purpose in mind are less likely to perform well. They don’t place a high value on a college education because they don’t see how a college education will help them get where they want to go. It serves no purpose for them.

7. Approval – Many students seek and are motivated by praise, encouragement and recognition for good work. When students are good at something and achieve exceptional results, their status in that environment goes up. When people compliment them, point them out as examples and look up to them, they shine.

8. Life Goals – Students frequently see their college education as a launching pad to their futures. A good education can lead to a good job, money, security and all of the trappings of success. They are motivated to do well because college will help them build a better future.

9. Aid Others – Some students are motivated by the need to help others. To reach their goal, they must perform well in college. A college education will to enable them fulfill their dream of serving others. They know that nurses, teachers, caregivers, counselors and other helpers can only get started with a good education.

Everyone is motivated by something. In fact, most college students are motivated by a combination of factors. Therefore, wise students recognize and utilize their own personal motivators. They understand that motivated students will always perform at a higher level than students who are unmotivated and uninspired.

What Are the Most Common Problems Students Face at College Or University?

Having worked with many thousands of students at – and beyond – many colleges and universities both in the United Kingdom and more internationally, I have seen at first hand many of the most common problems that students experience and also been involved in their resolution so I feel that I am able to provide some comment here.

Therefore, in this article I am going to now look to provide you with guidance on some of the areas where the most common problems have arisen for students studying at college and/or university and as to how these problems may be resolved. This is because it is an inescapeable fact that studying at college or university in modern time can be both a daunting and fun period in your life that has only been exacerbated by the current world’s economic problems that are being experienced internationally in almost every country.

As a result it is perhaps little wonder that money and issues of finance are a central concernt to students. This is because almost all students are constantly lacking funds and have to find ways to finance their housing, nutrition and – of course – their entertainment. Therefore, it cannot be overstated that there is a need for students now more than ever to look to work to a budget and plan what you are going to do with your money throughout the whole academic year – you may also find that getting a part-time job will help so go to your college or university’s employment bureau and see what they can offer you.

Another common problem – those of us who experience the dreaded ‘Clearing System’ will know just how bad that this can be! – is with getting on the course you want in the first place at your chose college or university. There is a need to appreciated that the more popular your course is with students like you, the more difficult and competitive you will find it to get a place studying that subject. Therefore, you need to look to make your decisions and sign up for the course that you want to have a place on as quickly as you possibly can to stand a better chances AND also look to have a back-up second choice subject or institution in mind where you may experience trouble.

There is also a need to make sure that you have the time to work AND study both on your course and as part of your homework – these problems are then only further exacerbated where there is a need to work to make ends meet. As a result, this often means cramming in a lot of studying in a short period of time. You can help yourself by planning your time carefully so that you have time to go to classes, study AND work so that you can meet all of your deadlines in both your personal and academic lives so that you are then able to get the results that you are seeking

Classes can also be difficult in practice where your teachers/professors arrogance or own self-importance affects a student’s professional relationship with their professor or their actual grades. As a result, unfortunately, worst case scenario there is often a need to bite your tongue and do some ‘sucking up’ big style in order to retain a good working relationship that allows you to achieve the results that you need. Of course there are many, many great teachers who will bend over backwards to help you in any way that they can, but there are also others who have become tainted by the profession and do not get the same enjoyment that they once did.

Now we shall get to another significant problem – drugs and alcohol.

The unfortunate reality is that, in college and/or university, however much effort is put in by the institution’s administration to limit their availability, drugs and alcohol are also a common problem as they are everywhere. Matters are then also not helped by the fact that since students at college and university are adults they often take full advantage to the detriment of their studies, social life, and health. Therefore, you must look to avoid temptation because students have died of drug overdoses or alcohol poisoning so you need to get help as soon as possible where you think that you need it since the consequences can be dire.

Similarly, there is also a need to be aware of the dreaded hormones . . .

This is because whilst colleges and universities (as well as high schools) do their best to raise awareness of the potential for the spread of sexually transmitted diseases/sexually transmitted infections (STDs/STIs) and unwanted pregnancy, responsibility rests on the individual. Therefore, the easiest piece of advice I can give you is to take precautions (e.g. condoms, the pill, etc . . .) and, if there are none available, just DO NOT do it!!