Many students show up to our classes unprepared or under prepared for college-level work. Our goal, along with teaching the course material, is to help them develop the necessary skills to be successful. Many of the ways we can do this are little things that will help all learners. Take a look at these suggestions from Kenneth Alford, PhD and Tyler J. Griffin, PhD:
- Help students quantify goals – Students will be more successful if they set specific and measurable goals. Ask students what their goals are for the course and how they will achieve them.
- Help students manage deadlines – Make sure students know the deadlines for their work and the consequences for missing deadlines. Think about ways for to help students learn from their mistakes and not give up if they miss an initial deadline.
- Help students buy in to the course -The more relevant students believe a course is to their life and future, the more likely they are to be interested and engaged in the content. Establish this at the start of the semester and with each new topic.
- Help students feel ownership – Ask students for input into their learning experience. Give them a voice in the course rules, the syllabus, optional course topics, or types of assignments.
These ideas were taken from their Magna Online Seminar, Teaching Unprepared Students: Strategies that Work. Watch a brief clip from the seminar here: