Database Search Basics

You have a paper or project to do, and your teacher wants you to include academic “research.” In this post, I’ll show you some tips and tricks for getting the most out of the time you spend. A lot of students find the mechanics of database research to be overwhelming–by the end of this post, you should feel more confident.

Continue reading Database Search Basics

From Summer Blues to Summer Success: How to Navigate a Summer (or Winter) Intersession Course

I’m going to be blunt: summer and winter intersession courses are hard.

Very hard.

If you want to successfully complete an intersession course, this post is for you.

Continue reading From Summer Blues to Summer Success: How to Navigate a Summer (or Winter) Intersession Course

I say “grade-grubbing,” you say “it doesn’t hurt to ask:” on asking teachers to “bump” your final grade

The semester is over, and you’re in that limbo where all of your assignments have been turned in but the teacher hasn’t assigned final grades yet. It doesn’t look like you earned the grade you’d hoped for. Do you:

Email the teacher, asking them to raise your final grade to the next level?

Or

Accept that you earned what you earned and you need to try better next time?

Over 100 college professors weighed in to help you answer that question. Read on!

Continue reading I say “grade-grubbing,” you say “it doesn’t hurt to ask:” on asking teachers to “bump” your final grade

Guest Spot: My Interview with Undergrad Made Easier

I’m so excited! My friends Adam and Dinur asked me to be the first guest interview for their podcast, Learning Made Easier. We’re all college professors that care about how well our students learn, and there’s something in the podcast for students and teachers alike. I had great fun, and I hope that you will enjoy it, too! Click the image, below, to go to the podcast and transcript.
Continue reading Guest Spot: My Interview with Undergrad Made Easier

Peer Reviewed, Academic, and Reputable Sources: What the Heck are They and How Do I Find Them?

If you’re writing a college-level research paper, most likely your instructor has told you that you must use a certain type of “source.” The language used to describe these sources varies, but in general, your teacher expects you to use high-quality sources for the information in your paper. Let’s take this concept apart so you have a better understanding of exactly what your teacher expects.

Continue reading Peer Reviewed, Academic, and Reputable Sources: What the Heck are They and How Do I Find Them?

Pointing to Each Other: Citation Basics

In the last post in this series (Citing Sources: Why Do We Do It?), I explained why we cite our sources as academics. In this post, I’m focusing on how we cite sources, but in a broad sense: what elements are common to all citation styles?

I’m sure that someone, somewhere, has counted the number of different citation styles that exist–let’s just say that there are a LOT. Fortunately, you don’t need to know them all; what you need to know is (1) what style your teacher wants and (2) what style is used in your academic discipline. Biologists use a different style than the English department.

Many students in my classes are familiar with MLA, the citation style of the Modern Language Association, or APA, the style of the American Psychological Association. There’s also the Chicago Manual of Style (usually just called “Chicago”) or Turabian or ASA . . . Again, you don’t need to know them all. Just know that they are out there, and that you can find reference books for each that tell you how to organize your citation material.

Continue reading Pointing to Each Other: Citation Basics

Cringeworthy: Bad Writing Habits that Hurt your College Writing, Part 5

The Odds and Ends

This is the last post in the series, and I’ll be honest – this one is the odds and ends that didn’t fit elsewhere 🙂

Continue reading Cringeworthy: Bad Writing Habits that Hurt your College Writing, Part 5