Posts Tagged ‘study tips’

Finding a Balance: Working Hard and Playing Hard

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

Girl with stack of booksLaboris gloria ludis.  The glory of the games, and of work.  We must be exactly like the Romans: they have mottos, we have mottos.  They played, we play.  They worked, we work.  Yeah, we must be exactly like the Romans.

Well, since we’re like the Romans, since we want to be like the Romans, we should ask how they found a balance.  And since we’re talking about school work here, not career work or working with our hands, we should ask what they thought schola was.  But since that would take some schooling, let’s just focus on three key things we all know from…school.

First, only the Roman elite went to school; it was the luxury of a few.  It was not at all mandatory as it is in the United States today.  Second, they paid, and they paid large sums.  In the late Republic and in the Empire, the educational arrangement had moved from a personal, family-centered affair to a structure involving tuition (itself a Latin word related to tutelage).  It was the luxury of a few.  Third, there was a more or less set curriculum that all students were expected to undertake by passing through more or less established stages: literature, grammar, rhetoric, philosophy. (more…)

How to Score High on the GRE Verbal Section

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

(Part 1: If you have >4 months)

Intro to the GRE Verbal Scale and how it’s used

The GRE is a little different from the SAT or the ACT.  The new scale, from 130-170 in one-point increments (since 2011), is based around the theory that smaller differences in score will be viewed by colleges as what they are: small.  This way, the test-makers reason, people won’t go so nuts.  Of course, ETS would also encourage colleges and universities to not use any score as a “cut-off score…for denying admission.”  These are two points in a five-point “should and should not” list that the test-makers published in what can only be seen as an attempt to control the normative standards surrounding the GRE.   Fortunately or unfortunately, their five “shoulds” are already largely ignored, as seen in point 4: “Test scores should not be added together.” (more…)

How to Prepare for Finals

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013
College Calendar

Finals Schedule

First Rule: Don’t procrastinate; avoid cramming.  But since you’ve already broken rule number one (it’s December, after all) then cram, cram, cram.  Effectively, of course.  This assumes that you would have been studying all year, such that you followed a plan something along the lines of reviewing the material at increasingly long intervals.  Say four times throughout the semester:

First, 10-30 minutes after you first learned it in class.

  • Second, a day or two later.
  • Third, a week or two later.
  • Fourth, a week or two before the exam.


Healthy Study Tips

Friday, March 16th, 2012

Does eating healthy help me in the admissions and testing process?

Good nutrition

Good nutrition

The short answer to this question is yes.  In the doldrums of Junior year when you are burdened with SAT test prep, college visits, and a mountain of school-work keeping yourself healthy is essential.

Plan your meals regularly.  Be sure to get a good breakfast. Many people find they have little appetite in the morning but its vital to get something in your system.  You will find yourself more awake for first period classes and SAT work.  It also serves to get your metabolism moving.  Be sure that your meals also are filled with fruits, vegetables, and lean protein.  This nutrient and energy rich diet will keep you healthy and energized.

A regular exercise routine is also vital in this time.  Countless studies have shown the positive effect of vigorous physical exercise on mental acuity and SAT Testing.  The short of it is, your mind is sharp when your body is active. You are more engaged and your creative and analytic centers get aided by the rush of endorphins triggered when you exercise.

Exercise and diet both are forms of self-discipline, which is key in this time of your life.  Only by keeping regular habits, and holding yourself accountable can you achieve all that you deserve in your junior year.  Practicing these habits is a significant piece in the larger puzzle of staying on task and pushing ahead. Your focus will be richly rewarded at the other end, when you are accepted to college and able to enjoy the fruits of you labor at the end of senior year.