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Tips for New Student Success

Preparing to join the SPU community? Here are things you can start doing now to get ready for the school year.

Want to get a head start on making the most of your first quarter in college? Try these five tips:

  1. Read your SPU email daily: SPU uses your university-issued email address as the primary way to communicate important information. If you don’t like having multiple email accounts, set your SPU email to forward to your most commonly checked account. 
  2. Start using a planner: Whether it’s your phone’s calendar or a paper planner, get in the habit of writing down appointments and dates to remember and then checking your planner every day. 
  3. Get sleepCreate a consistent sleep schedule. Practice sleeping 7-8 hours per night at consistent times (i.e. 11 pm to 7 am). Look at your fall class schedule and see what time you need to be up and ready for morning classes. Also, set your phone so that notifications don’t wake you up in the night.
  4. Practice taking “screen-free” breaks: Set aside your phone, computer, and devices for 30-60 minutes at a time to focus on tasks and not be interrupted. Although this may feel uncomfortable at first, try adjusting to the feeling of being “unconnected” while you focus on studying.
  5. Embrace a growth mindset and get ready to change how you study: Some of the ways you studied in high school or at your previous college may not be as effective at SPU because your workload may be heavier, your reading more dense, and your assignments/exams more demanding. This is completely normal. It doesn’t mean that you aren’t smart; it means that you are learning how to do something new. Pay attention to what works and what doesn’t and know that faculty, peers, tutors, and academic coaches are ready to talk with you about new strategies.

We look forward to helping you pursue your academic goals! The Center for Learning provides support and strategies to foster student academic success. Consider using one of these CFL services offered on campus:

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Find out more about CFL Study Tables

Need help with a challenging course? The CFL can connect you with tutoring resources.

Who’s Who in the CFL

Here is where you’ll find a list of the Center for Learning staff members, including their photos and contact information.