5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Early College Credits - Geneva College
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5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Early College Credits

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College Preparation Early College

Early college is seen as a benefit to high school students because of the college credits they earn and the experience they gain from working with college. This is in fact one of the greatest benefits of early college. Here’s my story about the Early College experience along with five tips that can help you get the most out of it.

Going to college while still in high school is an adventure. There is an element of fear on that first day. Doubts fly through your mind. What on earth were you thinking? Oh yeah, you thought you were smart. After you enter the building, the game is on. I know that I struggled to hold up the persona that I built and act like I fit in at college. While earning college credits early is great for applications, when you first start out, it can be really hard.

It is scary jumping into a new environment with different expectations. You have to adjust. However, the benefits out way the risks, so here are those tips to help deal with the jump from high school to college.

Tip #1 Don’t Over Do It

When you start taking credits, it is easy to let the pressure of high school and college make you turn into a study maniac. You know, when students read every word of the textbook and spend all of their spare time in the library. While doing the reading and studying are important, doing them all the time can cut students off from hanging out with friends and enjoying their high school years.

Tip #2 Don’t Stress Yourself Out

That C you got on one of the ten quizzes in your psych class is not going to crush your overall grade. You have to relax and not worry too much. While it is true that these grades do play into it some, they are not the get-all be-all and will not crush your grade in the class. You can’t let one grade turn you into a nervous wreck.

Tip #3 Have Fun

You can handle this and still have fun. College is all about having fun while learning at a higher level. So have fun! Hang out with your friends. Do game night with your family. Go with the youth group on that retreat. Work if that is what is enjoyable for you. Doing things that are fun, helps you to be energized for class work and studying.

Tip #4 Ask Questions

I often talk to students, even full-time college students, who are afraid to ask their professor questions in class. This is generally because they don’t want to look stupid. However, asking questions gives you a better understanding of the material and help you to do better on exams. It also shows professors that you are engaged and willing to learn. This opens doors to your professors outside of the classroom for tings down the road like letters of recommendation and research projects.

Tip #5 Step Out

When you start taking college classes, you are going to have group projects so having friends to work with that you can trust to pull their own weight. To do this you need to step out and talk to students around you. Forming new friendships also gives you a support group if things get hard or if you just need a hand with something. Bottom line, you have to step out of your comfort zone and talk to people.

These tips will help you navigate through some of the rough patches of doing college while in high school. There can be a lot of pressure during this transition but there does not have to be. Use this time to start your college adventure.

To find out more about Geneva College’s Early College / Dual Enrollment program, go to geneva.edu/earlycollege or contact Admissions at admissions@geneva.edu or 800-847-8255. Online summer courses are now available but registration ends at the end of April.

-Kelsey Gerhard ‘23

Opinions expressed in the Geneva Blog are those of its contributors and do not necessarily represent the opinions or official position of the College. The Geneva Blog is a place for faculty and contributing writers to express points of view, academic insights, and contribute to national conversations to spark thought, conversation, and the pursuit of truth, in line with our philosophy as a Christian, liberal arts institution.

Apr 7, 2021