How to Be a Successful Adult Learner

how to a successful adult learnerFor nontraditional students, students aged 22 or older who are returning to school after a hiatus, returning to school can be a nerve-wracking and intimidating time.

Here are some tips on how to be a successful adult learner:

1. GOALS. Having a clear objective will help you focus on your studies. Write your goals and tasks on a dry-erase board and post it somewhere you can see them daily. Break your goals out into long-term, medium-term, and short-term goals so that they are easier to tackle.

2. APPLY FOR AID. Fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) form as soon as possible. There is no age limit for need-based federal financial aid programs such as Pell Grants and low-cost student loans, so whenever you decide to continue your education, you may qualify for financial aid!

3. HAVE A COMPUTER. Whether you’re earning an online degree or attending classes at a local community college, make sure you own a computer or laptop (or have access to one). You will need to research things on the Internet, take tests, watch presentations, participate in class forums, blog, type up assignments, or read class material online. Here are some things to remember:

  • Make sure your computer is compatible which whatever technology, software, and plug-ins the school or degree program uses.
  • Make sure you back up all your work in case your computer crashes, on a USB flash drive for example.
  • Get the phone number of your school’s computer (or IT) support center.

4. STUDY SKILLS. Prepare yourself to do lots of reading, writing, and note-taking. Practice the best techniques for staying focused, remembering what you read, and prioritizing assignments – and you’ll increase your learning efficiency! If you do not understand something, ask your professor for help, or another student in the class for clarification.

If you are an adult learner, share some study tips and advice for being a successful student!

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