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Academic Guidance Academic Guidance - Academic guidance for those pursuing a college degree... what college? Grad school? PhD help?


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Old October 4th, 2015, 11:55 AM   #11
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Oh yes! I studied Mandarin there, and my wife's MSLS is from USC. Our granddaughter is a Senior studying Computer Engineering, currently on a year's hiatus. If we had to have paid the same per unit as our granddaughter, we would have fewer listings on our resume's. USC is a very good school, but dearest to my heart is my Auld Mater ... Southern Oregon College up in Ashland, Or.
Beautiful town and campus I see on Google Earth, mountains and forest above the valley, fresh air everyday. I remember swimming with a girl not far from there along highway 199. Ah, it was a cold mountain stream, but gorgeous country up there. Now I know where your name comes from.
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Old October 4th, 2015, 12:15 PM   #12

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Nope. I have one of those long hereditary names, and so from an early age my nickname was "Al". That's from the character Alfred E. Newman from Mad Comics. My face is round, my eyes don't quite match, my hair is ruffled, and I try to spend a portion of every day smiling. I'm was quite mad. As a youth, I was thin skinned and quick to battle over ridiculously trivial matters. A life of contemplation and study has cooled the embers, and now all that is left is ...... The Ash.

In government my E-mail address was Asherman. But as I grew older my hearing deteriorated as my government ranking grew. I couldn't hear well enough for telephone conversation, and staff handled the routine. I left my office less often, and those who got into see me dwindled. Folks just began to believe that was my surname, and its easier to join'em that fight'em. Out of sight, out of mind, and that simplified things for me, and what I was trying to do. Now I use Asherman for writing, and for my paintings.

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Old October 4th, 2015, 12:36 PM   #13
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That may be, but a Title is still granted by The Commons: 'Asherman of Ashland'.
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Old October 4th, 2015, 01:33 PM   #14
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I admire both of your writing skills. Everything both of you guys say is so well written and beautiful.
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Old October 5th, 2015, 07:26 PM   #15

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Outlines are great for class notes so you don't focus on wasting time writing every single little detail. Abbreviations are great too if you still can't write fast. Never. Ever. EVER. Use Cornell Notes. You'll limit yourself too much for the space of each subject.
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Old October 6th, 2015, 12:43 PM   #16
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I admire both of your writing skills. Everything both of you guys say is so well written and beautiful.
Thanks. Grammar and spelling are keys to the universe, with or without notes.
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Old January 15th, 2016, 07:37 PM   #17
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Google "Cornell Notes". This has worked well for me, especially if you stay on top of it. Don't skip the summary on the bottom either. It really brings things together to describe the notes in your own words.
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Old February 7th, 2016, 07:11 PM   #18
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1. There are two main places where students "need" notes. In class, and from their reading. Your approach to note taking may differ considerably depending upon the setting.

2. Class notes. As a freshman, I took notes on everything and that probably is pretty common. Over time I took fewer notes because I learned that note taking diverted me from the lecture. One way to look at is, your paying that Prof. big bucks to distill and impart his years of specialized study into your education, so pay attention.

By the time I was in Graduate School, I was using a note system that confined notes to one page per class, and often those pages were mostly blank. Near the center of the page write the class topic and circle it. That might be done in preparing for the class, and helps focus preparatory reading and thinking. Most professors in my experience, dull and brilliant alike, are lecturing from a structured outline. As the lecture moves from one element to the next you surround the central note with the sub-points in one or two words. Then there are sub-elements to the sub-elements, draw new circles and "titles" for them close, but outside their parents. Connect the circles with lines to help keep everything straight. Lecturers aren't machines, and so may jump from one sub-topic to another illustrating interrelationships; connect those interrelationships with a quick line from one to the other. At the end of the class instead of stampeding out, make a short bullet list of the most important points of the lecture. This technique lets the student put more focus on the lecture, while getting the gist of the information. The technique generally results in no more than one page per class, so for a whole term you might only have fewer 25 pages of notes to review.

2. Taking notes from reading materials. If you own the textbook, overcome your life training not to deface a book. Text books are organized, so generally only a few marginalia are required anyway. A series of personal symbols can remind you later during review what is most important to remember. Until recently, I still owned some of my old textbooks and from time to time reviewed my "notes" written into them. Looking back on those old memory hooks is one way to trace back over the evolution of knowledge and understanding of the topic.

Of course textbooks are generally replaced by better source material, and defacing them with sophomoric notes is a scholastic crime. In my day, when the pyramids were still shiny new, index cards worked better for me than spiral and three hole punched notebooks. The first card would be a color denoting the bibliographic citations with author, title, date, publisher, number of pages, and perhaps a comment on how good the bibliography, notes, and indexes were.

Succeeding index cards (I used white for text notes) might refer to chapter and page, one card per note and even then the note should be brief. If I wanted to note a linkage between notes, each individual card would cite the other. At the end of the book/source, I would append several cards giving my conclusions, reservations, etc. The whole deck of index cards for the book would be filed together. This system made it possible to quickly find specific data for citations while giving me a quick review of the whole book in no more than a few hundred cards. This system for you young people is probably obsolete, but could be easily adapted to a computer based system. In fact, if you have a file for each of your books/sources running searches would be both a snap and very informative in thinking about the subject.

3. Why take notes anyway? For review prior to those dreaded examinations? I've known thousands of students who collect several large notebooks filled with notes, and most of the notes are worthless. Taking them has distracted the student from the more important focus on lectures and the meaning/significance of what is read in the book list. Often they are jumbled together and the result is chaos. So the student loses confidence that they've learned anything as the term progresses. Exam time rouses the student to try cramming a whole term into a few all night sessions trying to make sense of all those notes. By the time they sit down with their Blue Books, they are exhausted and as the test proceeds remembering the relevant points is difficult.

* Take fewer notes, but make them good notes without losing focus on the stuff you are making notes about. Sources should always, always trump notes.

* Review your class and textbook notes before the succeeding class lecture. This reinforces and ties together those most salient points of the class. This is part of preparing for each class session, and, by the frequent review, will strongly implant the important points long before examination time.

* By having a smaller number of notes, and notes that are more relevant and easier to read, review time is minimized and your review will focus on the important stuff. When exams loom, students face their mountains of notes and despair. They recognize the futility of the effort, and put off the review as long as possible. They run all night sessions and gather in study groups at the last minute. I've seen dorm rooms that looked like a hurricane swept every scrap of paper over, under and around everything, even hiding the piles of dirty cloths. Don't do that.

* As exams approach, start early and spend at least as much time thinking as reviewing. Identify your strengths and weaknesses in the examination subject. Strengthen those weak areas by both review (fast), and finding new/better source materials to prop up those weaknesses (longer and slower). During the week prior to exam, reduce your daily preparation efforts instead of increasing them, get plenty of sleep. On the day before the exams, get away from the campus if you can. Go to a movie, take a walk in the woods, go sailing, or visit the local art galleries. Whatever you do, try to relax and purge your mind from the upcoming exam. No drugs or alcohol, eat three proper meals, and go to bed early. Get up on the morning of the exam, and take special care in your appearance. Be sure to take extra pens/pencils with you, and all the needed supplies for the exam.but keep it light. Show up ahead of time, but not by much. Avoid standing around in little groups of students who are frightened to death by the tests, or those who are arrogantly confident. Sit down at your assigned place and get control of your emotions. When the exam starts, do your thing.
You pretty much said everything!
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