Stop Hunting Around for Lost Articles: Use Yahoo! MyWeb

Have you ever “lost” an article?

You know what I’m talking about — you started reading something great, bookmarked it, and then when you went looking for it two months later the only thing you can find is 404 Page Not Found? Or maybe you found it, but now the website wants you to fork over some cash in order to see it?

I hate emailing myself a link, or bookmarking it, only to learn later that the material is off-limits. The biggest culprit was the New York Times. Until recently, they would charge you for access to articles that were more than 10 days old. That meant that if I read a great editorial and the topic came up during a discussion with someone two weeks later, I couldn’t send him the link (how many students pay to read archived news?).

But there were other sites too – for instance, a couple of years ago, ran an amazing article series called Fifty Writing Tools. It was the best writing advice I’d ever received, and I bookmarked the index page so that I could come back to read it again and again. A few months ago, I went back to Poynter to find that half of the links were broken. I wish I could have saved those articles somewhere, and shared them with some of my friends who are aspiring journalists. (Incidentally, in writing this article I went back to Poynter and was absolutely delighted to find that the writing tips are back in the form of podcasts. Check them out at

Digg and are fantastic social bookmarking sites, but they don’t allow you to save your own copies of a web page.

Yahoo! introduced a very handy resource for bookmarking pages a couple of years ago. It’s part of Yahoo! MyWeb, which is still in Beta – I guess they were taking a page from the book of Google, no pun intended. (Alright, maybe a little.)

Head over to, and once you’ve signed up, click on My Bookmarks. Since you’re just starting out, you don’t have any bookmarks. So let’s add one. On the MyWeb banner with the search box, find the link for Add Page. When you click it, a pop-up window will open up asking you for the url of the page and some other details. I took a screenshot of my own MyWeb Bookmarks page, with the window open.

Screenshot of MyWeb

As you can see, it is possible to set both public and private access levels. However, the option we are most interested in appears all the way at the bottom, in the form of a checkbox next to “Store a copy of this page.” Fill out the form, making sure that this option is checked.

When you submit the page, you’ll see something like the display in the background of my screenshot, in the main browser window. As you can see, I have saved four articles (more, actually), and for three of those articles I have added the note “For use in blog”. I got tired of linking to articles only to have them moved to paid archives (see earlier rant about New York Times). Those dates say 2008 but they are actually 2005 (I edited something small so it updated the date). If you click the titles, you will be taken to However, if you click the little link that says “My saved copy” that I’ve circled in red, you’ll be taken to this page. Isn’t that cool?

Some convenient toolbars for your browser are available here. And if you want to use Yahoo! MyWeb for your social bookmarking, you can share saved pages with friends and colleagues under the My Contacts tab. You’ll have to add a contact first, but after that you can share easily. Try it out — my user is sadp182.

I use MyWeb occasionally to bookmark my favorite articles, to save a link when I’m putting it up on my blog, and for saving internet-based references when I’m doing research and need to be able to come back later. I hope you’ll find it useful as well!

8 Reasons Why Re-writing Notes Is Essential

During finals week, time and time again I hear things like “you have such nice handwriting,” and “so much lecture information on so few pages,” and I am always very thankful that over a decade ago, my German teacher (props to Frau Bahr) told me that I’d learn best if I rewrote my notes for every class, condensed them as small as I could and then studied from that. For ten years now I’ve been doing just that; spending an hour longer than “normal” re-organizing and re-writing my notes for each class lecture that I attend. It may sound like a lot of “extra work,” but this re-writing process has been proven to help students cement the information they’ve just been given.

  1. without re-writing notes, students may forget vital pieces of information as well as what abbreviations and other marks mean
  2. re-writing your notes helps you memorize and understand the information you copied during the lecture, the best way to memorize a lot of information is in small pieces over a long period of time
  3. if you have questions about things you’ve heard in lecture, re-writing your notes may either help you understand what they were, or point them out clearer, encouraging you to ask about them during the next lecture
  4. while you are re-writing your notes, you are also able to re-organize them, put them in a format that works best for your learning style; visual learners can add color-coding and diagrams, auditory learners should read the notes aloud a few times, and kinesthetic learners (me!) learn by re-writing notes into outline formats
  5. a note on outline formats: each main point should be on its own line, details for the point should be indented to the right. A fantastic way to either learn or set up an outline is to use a word-processing program’s “bullets & numbering” feature; hard returns and indentations create the next appropriate character for outlines
  6. oftentimes, professors speak too quickly for a student to get all the notes written out; by re-writing your notes, you are able to fill in those blanks that you may have had to leave during lecture. The details are still fresh in your mind and you will be able to clarify them sooner. All of the abbreviations that you create during class should be spelled out and explained while re-writing your notes.
  7. re-writing your notes prepares you for your next class, reminding you of what you were to learn in previous lectures and cementing the foundations
  8. one thing I’ve found particularly helpful in many classes is writing out a short “summary” of the lecture at the end of each set of daily notes. Then, when I go back to study for the exam, I am able to paste all of these summaries together and read a page-long essay about what I was supposed to learn. Another option is to rewrite my essay I got from notes into a solid piece I can use for getting some extra points.

It helps best if a student can re-organize and re-copy their notes within 24 hours of the lecture, but if that cannot be done, then at least do it before the final few lectures, just in case you have any leftover questions or misunderstandings. Research shows that 80% of new material can be recalled if you review your notes within one day of presentation.

Want to bring those test grades up? Want to impress your classmates with your typed study guides? Re-write those notes daily and cement things sooner rather than later!

First Year Programs

Please thank That College Kid for this guest post. If anyone else would like to contribute a guest post to The Student Help Forum, please contact me.

My university has a first year program that is designed to help freshmen become accustomed to the college experience. We have a triad of classes that are intertwined. There’s a large political science or psychology class, a smaller composition class and a small seminar class. The science/psych class is a normal large lecture, with about 150+ students, but the others have 25. The coursework is similar and the seminar class is designed to help students with any questions they have and to help prepare for a successful academic career.

My school believes their award-winning first year program helps students and it’s been in use for almost ten years. Texas State University, Ohio State University and the University of Georgia are among schools that have similar programs. While I haven’t researched in great detail the programs of other colleges, I can give you first hand knowledge of the one at my school (name protected for my privacy).

It is designed for students who will not otherwise succeed in college. All classes and instructors in the first year program do not grade or teach on a college level. The classes are on an upper (think Advanced Placement) high school level. For students that do not need to be babied, this program is a waste of time and money. Yes, it’s nice to get easy A’s (assuming you do the work), but it gets you used to easy coursework. Upper classes in college are not easy. Sometimes you will find easier, smaller classes, but for the most part, once you get into your major, you will have to work much harder.

It decreases freshmen dropout rates…

But it increases sophomore dropout rates. These programs get freshmen think college is easy and they can skate by without doing any real work like in high school. Students that otherwise would have dropped out to find a job will stay longer and spend more money only to find out they were misinformed and end up leaving the next semester, when classes get tougher.

These programs do not prepare students for the real world. When you get a job, unless you are the luckiest person alive, your boss is not going to give you a grace period to mess up. He’ll give you the real work on day one. You’re lucky if you get an hour to figure out your way around the office.

High school was the transition into college. Junior and senior year of high school are supposed to get students prepared to enter the workplace or attend a university. Students take advanced placement and honors courses to get used to the type of classes they will encounter in college. AP classes at most public schools are not hard enough, but they’re much better than regular curriculum. Why have another year of that? And why pay an incredible amount of money for it?

Currently, my university does not allow freshmen to opt-out of the first year program, but I wish they did. If you have to participate in the first year program at your university, enjoy the easy work while you can because you’re in for an awakening your sophomore year.

Time Management in the New Year

First, a quick introduction! I’m Sarah, a new writer around here at The Student Help Forum. I’m a full-time post baccalaureate student in public health education. I work over 30 hours a week, write for four blogs and try to have a social life on top of everything. I hope my words of advice within The Student Help Forum strike a chord with you and enhance your student life! I’m always open to writing suggestions and you should feel free to send me some mail if you ever have something you’d like to see me address!

Second, let’s get down to business!

If you’re anything like me, once finals week is over, your brain shuts down until about a week into the next term’s classes. However, over this winter break, I’d like to challenge you to keep thinking; start thinking about next term, and how you’re going to push yourself to do even better in it.

My first suggestion on how to improve yourself in the new year & the new term is:


Use a Calendar!Whether you choose to use a paper calendar, or Google’s wonderful calendar application, write things down, keep track of where you’re supposed to be and when you’re supposed to be there, and then celebrate as you cross things off your list!

I use my calendar to plan telephone calls, to make doctor’s appointments, to keep track of my work schedule, to remind myself I have a blog entry due (or blog inspirations), to write down lunch dates with friends, and even to write myself notes about how my day went.

When you have big events that you need preparation, pre-reminded yourself! I write down my finals during the first week of classes, and then one week before the final, I write “PHE 355 Final – 1 week!” and high-light it to remind myself that it’s coming up.

If it’s your thing, I’ve found that color coding my calendar is incredibly helpful. I have a colors for school, for work, for blogs, for WEGOHealth (where I am a community leader), for photography, for exercise and for personal stuff. It’s a bright looking calendar and even when there’s a lot of stuff going on, at least it’s shown in fun colors!

On paper calendars, sometimes it’s hard to write about your “to-do’s” in detail, but I recommend you write down all the details (address, contact name & information, things you may need to bring, etc) when you’re writing on your calendar. I often keep paperclips in my day planner so I can attach things to the days that they belong with as well.

Another tip that I have, which comes in handy for students is to write down all the family birthdays or anniversaries you need to remember when you first get a blank calendar. Most of us get calendars when we’re home for the holidays and since your mom is most likely to be right there, have her help you out. This will help you remember to send Grams a birthday card and remind her how great she is!

While it may seem daunting to use a daily calendar to keep track of your life, I promise you that in the long run, it will pay off and you will be incredibly pleased (not to mention organized) with the results!

Essential Software for Students

School is hard. Between papers to write, tests to study for, projects to finish, and trying to actually have a social life, there’s a lot for students to do. There’s also a lot of software out there that promises to make things easier – unfortunately, a lot of it can break a student budget. Fear not, though, there is help!

Students have a lot of needs when it comes to technology, and thankfully, there are free solutions to most of them. From security to socializing, I’m going to walk you through the essential software for students to keep their schoolwork and schedules on track.


AVG by Grisoft makes an excellent suite of anti-malware software. There are three programs in the suite: AVG Anti-Virus Free, AVG Anti-Spyware Free, and AVG Anti-Rootkit Free. They work well, update automatically, and you don’t have to worry about your subscription – and your protection – running out.

As for a firewall, ZoneAlarm is a great choice, free for personal and charitable use. When a program tries to access the internet, ZoneAlarm pops up a message requesting access – if you don’t know whether to allow it or not, ZoneAlarm will offer advice about what to do.

    Web Browsing and Email

For web browsing, you should get Mozilla Firefox. It’s free, it has thousands of extensions to do anything you could possibly want to do with a web browser, and it has security features built in. If you don’t do anything else, get rid of Internet Explorer. It’s a magnet for viruses, spyware, and just about every other kind of security problem that exists.

While you’re switching to Firefox, check out Mozilla Thunderbird for email. It does everything Outlook does, and like Firefox, has great extensions and built-in security.

    Office Applications

Eventually, you’re going to need to write something, or create a spreadsheet. Instead of paying $300 for Microsoft Office, get OpenOffice. It does everything that Microsoft Office does, and it’s completely free.

Likewise, why settle for the restricted features of Adobe’s Acrobat Reader? Get Foxit Reader instead – it’s faster, it lets you do things Acrobat doesn’t, and it’s free.

At some point, you’re probably going to want to do some image editing. You can shell out hundreds for Adobe Photoshop, or you can get The GIMP, a free, open-source alternative. GIMP can be a bit less intuitive, but once you learn to master it, there’s not much you can’t do with it.


If you’re going to keep your schedule together, you’ll need a calendar. Paper calendars are great, and it’s a good idea to have one for those times when you can’t get to your online one. However, there are a lot of positives to online calendars: email and text-message reminders, guest invitations and RSVPs, group sharing, and of course, being able to access it anywhere in the world. When it comes to online calendars, Google Calendar is my favorite.

If you like having a desktop calendar program, I recommend getting a Google Calendar account and downloading Mozilla Sunbird, a full-featured calendar program that integrates well with GCal. If you’re using Thunderbird for email, you can get Lightning, a great calendar extension for Thunderbird.


There are a lot of great services out there for chatting. MSN, AOL, Yahoo, and Google all have their own services. If you’re using them all, you should consider a multi-service client like Pidgin.

You can log into all your IM accounts through Pidgin and save the system resources used by running several different clients.If you want the ultimate in chatting, though, you should go for Skype. Not only does Skype provide user-to-user and group chats like the other programs, but it offers free user-to-user VOIP phone calls. You can even have large conference calls with groups of Skype users, anywhere in the world. Skype also offers plans that allow you to call landline phones, and to receive calls from landlines; in some cases, you can have your whole year’s phone service for less than you’d spend for two months with regular phone service.

    Online Applications

There are some great online applications out there for students as well. Google offers a whole library of services, including Google Scholar, Google Book Search, Google Earth, Google Translate, and the previously mentioned Google Calendar.

For note-taking, NoteSake is an excellent online application. NoteSake lets you take your notes online, share them with others, collaborate with groups, organize them, and even provide copies to others who weren’t in class.

If you’re learning a foreign language, Mango provides free online language courses. You can choose from eleven different languages, with more to come. Mango is a beta release, however, so don’t be surprised if you find the occasional cucaracha.

Justin Ryan is a freelance writer and technology consultant. He is the News Editor for and a regular blogger for, where he writes on technology, personal finance, and savvy living.

Student Productivity Week – Books on the Web

This is another part of The Student Productivity Week. For the full list of articles see the overview, or at

Textbooks. No matter what way you look at them, they are a pain. They are heavy, expensive, and hard to understand. Everyday I see people struggling around their universities piled under a load of huge books.

This does not have to be anymore, thanks to the internet.

There are now a large collection of books available directly over the internet – no heavy lifting, no large debts. Simple!

The hardest part is to find these places, but look no further. Here is a list of the most important, easiest to access, and in general the best sites on the web. Here are Books on the Web:

Classics in the History of Psychology – Containing over 25 full books, and hundreds of articles, if you are a psych student you will never be lost again. For example, say you are looking for information about Sigmund Freud. Simply type in his name, and there you have it:
Psychopathology of Everyday Life, The Origin and Development of Psychoanalysis, The Interpretation of Dreams, and many more. All in full text for you to read instantly.

The Online Books Page – This is a directory of places you can download texts from. For example, type in Jane Austen, and there are dozens of places from which you can view the full works of Jane Austen. There is just so much information available at a click of the mouse. – With more than 20,000 books, eBrary is virtually the perfect online book source. Unfortuantly, it does have a $5 sign up fee, but surely that is worth the price. Rather than purchasing textbooks, there can be a major saving for this online library. For my own sake I typed in the keyword ‘Thermodynamics’ and there were over 1500 results!

Google Books – Google had the bright idea of trying to insert every single book ever written onto the internet, unfortuantly they have not quite met my expectations. You are only allowed to view a view select pages of any one book, before being forced to buy it to see the rest. There are only a select few whose copyrights have expired, and you are allowed to download for free.

Project Gutenberg – Any book thats copyright has expired is available for free download from Project Guenberg. Some of the most popular books of all time are available here, as well as hundreds of others. With more than 20,000 free books, it is no surprise that some of them include Pride and Prejudice, Ulysses, Huckleberry Finnk, and The Iliad!

Hopefully this list will allow you to save several hundreds of dollars every year, especially if you are studying English Literature or something similar. Forget about lugging huge books to every class when there is such an easy and cost effective method available.

Student Productivity Week – The Beginning

For the past few weeks Gideon Addington and I have been working hard to produce a week of the best posts about Student Productivity. Everything from textbooks, to resources, and online applications will be covered in detail with one post a day alternating on our blogs. Stay tuned for a lot of great tips in the coming week as we delve into the future of university student’s ideas about productivity, procrastination and time management… as well as some great facebook time-savers.

Day One:

Beyond Wikipedia – 20 References You Can’t Do Without

Day Two:

Books on the Web

Day Three:

The Full System – Note Taking, Scheduling, and Studying

Day Four:

The 10 Best Facebook Apps for Students and 3 to Avoid

Day Five:

6 Facebook Apps for Students (and everyone else!)

7 + 3 Ways to Boost your GPA


GPA or Grade Point Average, is the one deciding factor that compares the quality of your work with your classmates and ranks you accordingly. The higher your GPA the better. But sometimes it is much harder to increase this simple number than it first seems. Thankfully, there are some simple steps you can take to boost your GPA. Pick the Brain has provided a few tips on this very topic, but I have found a few more that prove very useful.

John Wesley’s original 7 tips include:

  1. Go to class – You would be surprised how often this is not followed. When you get to university you will learn that nothing is compulsory, and none of your lecturer’s will care if you go to their courses or not, so it is extremely difficult to stay focused and motizated.
  2. Sit in the Front Row – Not my favourite place to sit in a class, but it will get you involved, and make it easier to learn more.
  3. Take Notes by Hand – I am a massive supporter of this idea. I don’t think that you learn as easily just by following through printed notes. Actually writing the information down engages a different part of your brain, meaning that you are thinking about the concept and memorizing it at the same time.
  4. Do a weekly review – I have never tried this, but I suspect that it would work well. Most of the time you do this automatically however, whenever you are studying for an exam or preparing an assignment.
  5. Go to office hours – Again, I have never tried this, because I do not think that intruding on a lecturer in their time is of any benefit. If you have any questions, just ask them during your classes or directly afterwards.
  6. Find smart people to work with – Working through questions, and analysing key concepts can be a great way to fully understand the topic you are studying. It is for this reason that I encourage everyone to get a mentor. Someone older who can help you out, but have a smart fellow student in your same course can often be just as good.
  7. Avoid all-nighters – All-nighters are not the most pleasant experience, but most of you will do at least one of two in the next few years. Sometimes they are unavoidable, but I would try to eliminate them as much as possible.

My three additional thoughts on how to increase your GPA are of a different thought process, but are still highly valuable.

  1. Take easier courses – Make sure they are related to your major, but taking a few easy courses is a great way to boost your GPA. You just have to make certain that you will score extremely highly in all the assignments and exams. Remember, most courses are weighed the same, so a quick, simple course can be a great way to increase your GPA.
  2. Focus on the important assessment – It can be very irritating, but it is often the case that some of the least important assignments in terms of marks can be the hardest and take the most amount of time. Try to focus on the assignments and exams that will have the biggest impact on your overall grade.
  3. Remove distractions – Acquiring a high GPA can mean a lot of study. This is a very hard thing to do for many people, so you must help yourself out as much as possible. A good way to do this is to remove all distractions from your study area – TVs, computer games, mobile phones…

Having a high GPA can mean a lot when you are trying to get your first major job, or if you are trying for scholarships and academic awards. Often it is not easy to increase this number by a lot, but it is worth a try!

It’s very difficult to keep yourself focused when studying for an online degree through an online education course. You can consult from encyclopedias and dictionaries i.e. german english dictionary or the online french english dictionary to take help in your studies. Always choose the best online courses offered by a reputable institution like the University of Maryland.

Sniffles, Sneezes, and Sickness

Tissue Box

When you leave home for the first time, and start going to university, there is one thing which you can never be prepared for – the number of colds and illnesses you will get in your first year. It will seem that every week you willl have another kind of flu. You will catch anything from coughs, the sniffles, sour throats, stomach bugs, and everything in between. While this obviously has the actual symptoms, it can also have a big impact on your academic results.

You cannot choose when you will catch a cold, so they could come at the worst possible times. I know that I have caught a cold during Mid-Semester exams, final exams, the day before an assignment is due, and dozens of other times throughout the year. It is for this reason that you need to have a fully stocked supply of antidotes, lozenges, and various other drugs.

This is a small list of all the things that you will use, plus some that you should use:

  • Vitamin C Tables
  • Throat Lozenges
  • Pain Killers
  • Bandages
  • Various Different Kinds of Head Cold Tablets

I hate illnesses and colds! This is definetly a scenario when the saying ‘A prevention is better than a cure’ applies. Try to eat healthy, excercise, and stay out of the cold. Hopefully if you follow all of these tips you will be able to stay healthy throughout your university life.

Productivity vs Passion


Cal Newport has posted a very insightful post recently titled Productivity is Overrated. While many people will argue against this idea, Cal does have some interesting arguments:

  • Being productive does not make you accomplished.
  • It does, however, make being accomplished less stressful.

This leads to the idea that accomplishing your goals is not about productivity at all, but is driven by determination and passion. It may take a little longer in the end, but if you are focused on your hopes and dreams than you do not need to be organized or very productive to reach them.

Having watched many documentaries on some of the greatest minds of the Twentieth Century, I have noticed that they majority of them do not follow many of the productivity tips shared here – they are messing, and unorganized. But what makes achieve all of their goals is a driving passion that consumes them.

Remember that productivity is not the most important thing in accomplishing your goals, but it could easily halve the time it takes for you to reach them.

[And for anyone who was wondering, the picture of the tomatoes symbolizes organization]


There are a multitude of online student tools available that can help you organize your university life. A very new website that is sure to become extremely popular amongst college students is NoteSake. Just some of its features include:

  • Collaborate with Groups
  • Pass Notes to People
  • Access Notes from any Computer
  • Organize Notes by Title, Date or any Custom Tag

This truly is a compilation of all your university work, and will definetly become many student’s homepages.

Having all of your information about your work in a single place is a very important, and will help when exams come along. No longer do you have to search through a tattered note pad or through a huge bunch of loose leaf paper. It is all there right in front of you. This can increase your productivity dramatically, but make sure you do not get distracted!

The 4 Things you Actually Need at College


College and Finance has created a quite extensive list of 18 Overlooked Things that Everyone Should Bring to College. As a current college student I can tell you that you of the 18 objects listed, there are only 4 that you will actually use. The list mentiones a huge number of things that are either irrelevant, or just so obscure that you may only use them once or twice. The 18 objects are:

  1. Ear Plugs
  2. Flip Flops (THONGS)
  3. Toiletries
  4. Powerboards
  5. Cleaning Supplies
  6. Duct Tape
  7. Hammer
  8. Screwdriver
  9. Stapler
  10. Door Hanger
  11. Storage Containers
  12. Bottle Opener
  13. USB Drive
  14. Pliers
  15. Extra Sheets
  16. Vitamins
  17. Air Freshener
  18. Microwave

Of these items, I can honestly say the only things I have needed are:

  1. #2 Flip Flops (In Australia we call them thongs and wear them everywhere). I must admit that I have worn my thongs everyday that I have been at university. I wear them to the shower, to lectures, to shopping centres, to parties… everywhere. They are essential, and must be brought.
  2. #4 Powerboards – Just in case your room does not have enough powerpoints. Remember, in this day and age there are a lot of things that need electricity – computers, phone chargers…
  3. #9 Stapler – A stapler is kind of important for stapling assignments and notes together, just so everything is neat and tidy. People seem to prefer that assignments get stapled rather than binded or just loose.
  4. #12 Bottle Opener – For obvious reasons

The rest of the items in the list may be useful, but they are definetly not essential. The thing to point out is that your room may be very small, so the less stuff you bring with you, the bigger it will feel. Filling it up with hammers, and screwdrivers, and microwaves is really not needed.

11 Lifehack Student Tips

Happy Student

As many of you may realize, one of my favourite blogs on this topic is This is because of the huge number of high quality posts they can continually produce each and every day. And once again they have done it. Thanks to Dustin Wax, we know have 11 more tips for having a great semester:

  1. Get organized
  2. Know your professor
  3. Find a mentor
  4. Visit the writing center
  5. Join something
  6. Speak up
  7. Read for pleasure
  8. Start something
  9. Set goals
  10. Fail
  11. Find balance

Perhaps the most important one in my opinion is number #3. A mentor is just someone who is older and wiser than you in a particular field. This can be anything from an older student to a professor or even someone out in the field. I personally have a lot of older students who help me with problems or concepts whenever I get stuck. Most people are ready and willing to help you out, but you have ask.

A note on point 6 – although it is very beneficial to answer questions because it helps you and gives the lecturer feedback, do not constantly be the person to answer all the questions. Remember to allow others to provide feedback as well. It can be quite irritating for your fellow students if one person is always answering everything.

Setting goals is another very important facet of anyone’s life, not just for university. I have written a previous post about setting goals, and I recommend to everyone that they do it.

Following these tips can help you improve your GPA, but they will also make you feel less stressed, and more capable of continuing along the difficult path that you have chosen. Studying for several years at a time is never easy, but it does not have to be as hard as people make it out to be.

Study Tips – Setting Goals

Setting Goals

Trying to stay focused and motizated about your study can often be difficult, but one of the easiest ways is to set some goals. Think of why you joined the course in the first place – career plans, your interest in the topic, and what you want to get our of your course.

Write down all of your goals and stick them to your wall. This can be very inspirational and motivating in your times of need. If you ever feel a bit discouraged, simply look at your goals, and remember how you felt at the time you wrote it.

Achieving these goals is another matter altogether, but you cannot even attempt to accomplish them if you do not know what they are.

There are several easy steps that you can follow if you are having problems with goal setting:

  • Identify your hopes and dreams, but keep them possible
  • Take 10 minutes every day to imagine how terrific it will feel when your goals are actually realized [LifeHack
  • Set both short, medium and long term goals
  • Commit yourself to reaching those goals

Focusing all your efforts on trying to accomplish a series of goals is very beneficial for your mindset, and is a great way to improve your grades through study. 

Surviving at University – 11 Tips for Success


Starting at a new university is a daunting time for any student, but there are ways to avoid any problems. eyeRblog has provided 9 (actually 8…) tips for this, but I could think of 3 more. There is only one way for these ideas to work, and that is to try them. University can be the best time of your life, but it can also be extremely difficult. If you thought High School was hard, then you will be shocked by the size and difficulty of university style assignments and exams.

The easiest way to settle in is to distract yourself from all of your worries and concerns. Make new friends, sort out your timetable and living conditions. The following tips are a great place to start, thanks to eyeRblog:

  1. The first week defines the rest of the year

  2. Organize study groups

  3. Study for tests

  4. Get involved

  5. If you don’t like your roommate, switch

  6. Go to sporting events

  7. Figure out housing for next year

  8. Don’t buy books until you need them

I agree with a lot of these points, especially number 4 and 6. The easiest way to feel at home is to get involved in everything around you – cultural events, sporting teams, study groups, and social gatherings. Simply watching these things does give you an opportunity to distract yourself from your concerns and it gives you something to talk about to your new friends, but imagine the additional benefits of actually being involved.

#8 is also another great idea that I have spoken about before. This can save you a lot of money.

There are some additional pointers to be considered though, which can make life even easier.

  1. Go to the orientation events – Most universities have a lot of lectures and gatherings in the first few weeks to help you fit in. I admit that I did not go to all of mine, but I would’ve had an easier time starting my study if I had.

  2. Take a walk around your campus – This is another thing I wish I had’ve done. On my way to a new class recently I found an entire art museum that I never new about. Quite a big find, but if you know where everything is from the beginning you will have a much easier time.

  3. Choose easy subjects – The first semester is always the hardest. This is because you are not used to university exams and assignments, so having an easy first semester will seem hard at first just due to the nature of your course. This is hard to understand, but you will always improve from this point.

It is always hard to start a new life in a new place, but following these tips you can manage it with little trouble.