Online education is more popular than ever as the pandemic forces the global academic industry to adapt

The whole world has been impacted by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in one way or another. In most instances, the impacts have been decidedly negative. There are, however, some instances where the pandemic has forced industries to evolve in fresh and exciting ways – and in ways that are making waves for all the right reasons. Of course, the number of instances that the pandemic has had a negative impact on the world as we know it far outweigh the number of instances in which the pandemic has proven to be something of a blessing in disguise.

One such instance is of course the impact of the pandemic on the education industry. Over the decades, the education industry has always been an incredibly bountiful and influential industry. And while this has never changed, the way that education is carried out has changed over the years, improving more and more as the years go by. When the pandemic began to cause havoc around the globe back in November, no one could possibly be prepared for what was coming for the education industry. 

How the education industry has been impacted by the virus

One of the most impactful innovations in the education industry as a result of the pandemic over the last six months or so has without a doubt been digital materials and tools. Digital materials and tools of course existed and flourished prior to the pandemic – especially in the education industry. However, they have definitely kicked into high gear, being propelled forward on the tail of rising pools of interest and investments that are sending education further and further into its next iteration. An iteration that, as it turns out, is more digitally inclined than ever before.

The rise of online education during these trying times

Now more than ever, online education is rising to the occasion as traditional learning has been grinding to a halt and educators and learners alike around the globe have essentially been forced to adapt. From the heightened utilisation of digital learning concepts like the online classroom to the opening of an online school, and every innovation in between and beyond, the rise of online education during these trying times has been a solid indication that the pandemic has been a catalyst to shift academics into their most modern and forward-thinking state of being yet. And this is just the tip of the iceberg.

What can be expected from online learning from here on out

Ultimately, there is so much more left to be discovered and explored when it comes to online education and what it can offer educators and students alike. Online learning is more popular than it has ever been before. The education industry that spans the globe was forced to adapt and overcome when the pandemic started to wreak havoc around the globe. Ever since, it has proven itself to be a tremendously strong innovation in international education that is well worth the rising interest and investments. And it is finally getting the attention to detail that it has always deserved. This is just the start. The best is yet to come.

The 2019 Survey of College and University Business Officers

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Inside Higher Ed conducts an annual survey of college and university business officers. The point of this higher education survey is to reveal the business climate within education, and connect it to the issues of stability and reputation of higher education institutions. 

Throughout the past few years, private college officials have been concerned about the financial viability of their institutions. This year, they are slightly more optimistic. Public universities, on the other hand, are feeling more pressure than ever. 

Dan Greenstein, chancellor at Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, said: “Let’s give it a name. It’s called terminal financial decline. Let’s give it a duration. It’s got about seven to ten years. Every choice we make has a consequence.”

With that, Mr. Greenstein summed up the findings of the ed survey. But we’ll get into more detail. 

This universities survey is important for measuring the financial health of educational institutions and working towards a better model, which would work for the students, the government, and private schools. 

It’s a Tough Financial Environment for Colleges and Universities

Many students complain about the massive tuition fees. They have every right to do so. They pay thousands of dollars per semester, so most of them have to take jobs in order to afford higher education. Since they spend a lot of time on the job, they have less space for academic projects and end up hiring an essay writing service when they need help. This is a big problem that affects their success at college, and it has a financial background. 

But students often fail to realize the other side of the coin. Universities don’t impose higher fees because they like to. They do it because it’s the only way for them to stay financially viable. We’re often talking about the ways technology will change education. The change is great, but technology costs a lot of money for universities. They have to provide it, and they have to afford it. 

47% of the business officials at private baccalaureate colleges and 30% of those at private nonprofits said that they had drawn endowment funds above the normal spending policy over the past year. 25% of the colleges that had drawn funds said the amounts were between $5 million and $30 million over five years. This is a clear sign of the financial distress these institutions feel. The higher tuition fees do not come close to covering their expenses.

When asked if they expected the economic downturn to negatively affect their institutions, only 17% of the respondents were confident that their schools would remain viable. 59% of the business officers said they were worried about the impact of the declining economy. When divided between community and private baccalaureate colleges, the concern was clearly greater among private institutions (75% vs. 47%). 

When asked about potential solutions, a merge came out as a favorable option. 18% of business officers agreed that their institution should merge within the next five years. Comparing with the results of the 2018 education survey, that percentage stayed the same. 28% of the respondents said they had a serious internal discussion about administration/academic consolidation. 62% agreed that their colleges should share administrative functions.

How does this solve the problem? A successful merge can produce the revenue, marketing strategy, and financial reserves for a college to stay viable. That’s why 70% of the respondents from private nonprofit institutions said that their colleges should at least share academic programs.   

What Does This Mean for the Students?

Unfortunately, we’ll continue seeing higher tuition fees for the years to come. 38% of the survey respondents agreed that the current tuition discount rate at their institutions was unsustainable. When compared to the 48% from the 2018 survey, we’re at a better position today. Still, the tuition fees are not likely to drop. Only 7% of college business officers said that the tuition rate dropped, and 23% had only considered doing that. 71% haven’t considered a reset, since it wouldn’t benefit their institution at all. 

The results from this survey make us ask the same question all over again: is this educational model sustainable? Public institutions seem to struggle less, but they still experience financial difficulties. For private colleges, the struggle is real. We see less confidence in future financial stability, and the final burden will definitely fall on the backs of future generations of students. 

Studying English continues to grow as international skill

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When it comes to mastering new skills and fine-tuning existing talents, there is much to be said about persevering even when the going gets considerably tough. As the saying goes, ‘nothing worth having comes easily’. There are (literally) a world of skills and talents out there, and they are all valuable. Arguably one of the most valuable skills and talents in all the world is being bilingual (having the ability to not only understand, but also fluently speak more than one language). Being bilingual is a skill that is quickly becoming more and more popular as time goes on, with millions of people taking lessons in different languages every other day.

Learning languages continues to become more popular

Having the command and in-depth understanding of multiple languages is a gift, and more and more, people are understanding the benefit of being able to understand and fluently speak a different language (or multiple) than their native tongue. One of the most popular languages to study and learn is English. As one of the most common languages in the world (and in fact the leading second language in the world), English is a language the world adores.

Why being bilingual is such a special skill

Whether you make the decision to study English, or learn Italian, or any other language available to you, being bilingual is a tremendous advantage not only in your understanding of other cultures and the world around you, but in your everyday life, and even at work. Having another language listed in your skills section of your resume gives you an advantage above the competition because it means that there is the potential for you to bring in more international business, as well as form international professional networking connections.

Why studying English is such a power move

As mentioned earlier, English is the world’s most common second language. With roughly 1.2 billion people internationally that speak English as their second language, it is an incredible advantage to be able to join that constantly growing number. Why? Because English is the most commonly spoken language in the world, and if you travel or otherwise reach out of your comfort zone, having a sense of familiarity to help you work through the experience can and often does make all the difference.

At the end of the day, being bilingual in general is an impressive skill that can edge you above the competition for your dream job, or help you navigate an unfamiliar environment more easily, or even just connect with people from all walks of life, all over the world. And studying English is the most sure-fire way to join in the global conversation, without navigating the barriers that can easily arise across borders. More and more, the modern world is proving to be one that is bilingual, and studying and mastering English can be a great way to surge ahead in that modern world (not to mention the future that follows). 

Can’t Choose a Career? How to Get Over Your Indecision

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Most people have trouble choosing their career when they get to college. Some even struggle to decide what career is best for them well into their 40s or 50s. But as you begin your college career, you’ll need to choose a major—and that major could have a lasting effect on your future employment. 

Obviously, this is a big decision, and it’s natural to feel overwhelmed and anxious about this decision. However, at some point, you’ll need to be decisive and work past those anxieties. Fortunately, there are several strategies you can use to calm your nerves—and end up with a major and/or career path you’re confident you’ll enjoy. 

Understand That This Isn’t Your Final Decision

It may seem like choosing your major in college is going to dictate how the rest of your life plays out, but this isn’t really the case. It’s hard to estimate how many times people change careers during their lives (even for the BLS), but anecdotal evidence alone makes it clear; most people undergo many career changes in their adulthood, and few end up strictly following the path their major laid out for them. 

In other words, even if you somehow find a perfect choice for your future, that perfect choice may not be perfect forever. You’ll always have the opportunity to find something new, and that’s a good thing. Don’t think of this as a lifelong commitment. 

Know the Criteria for What Makes a “Good” Career

How can you choose a career when you aren’t really sure what a “good” career looks like? Different people have different priorities when it comes to choosing a career path, so it pays to define yours objectively. 

These are some of the most important categories people consider: 

  • Job openings and demand. It’s usually a good idea to go into a career with lots of demand, many regular job openings, and a strong future ahead of it. For example, fields like healthcare won’t be affected by economic changes or technological breakthroughs. 
  • Safety and hazards. Some jobs are inherently more dangerous than others. For some people, risky professions are worth the rewards, since they often come with better pay and benefits packages. But for others, safer professions are a better choice. 
  • Pay. Obviously, you’ll want to consider the earning potential of the job. Typically, jobs and careers with a high demand for technical expertise pay more than jobs that are easy to obtain, or jobs that don’t require much training or education. 
  • Personal enjoyment. People often neglect personal enjoyment as a considering factor when evaluating their career options, but it’s as important as the other factors on this list. If you don’t like what you’re doing, it won’t matter how safe your job is or how much money you make; you’ll be miserable. You don’t have to love your job, but you should at least be able to tolerate it.
  • Future flexibility. Your wants and needs will likely change in the future, so how well can this career path accommodate those changes? Most people are best served seeking a job with some degree of flexibility. For example, does this career allow you to seek multiple promotions, climbing the corporate ladder? Will you have the option of starting your own business in this field eventually? 

Understand Your Strengths and Weaknesses

You also need to spend some time introspecting. What are your strengths and weaknesses, and how could they play into your career? Are you really good with people, but not great at working with numbers? Or did you always exceed in math and science courses, but struggle when it comes to writing? Your aptitude doesn’t have to determine your career path, but if you’re stuck between a handful of options, it can help to break the tie. 

Get Involved 

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, you’ll want to get involved with other people. If you have a list of viable career options, reach out to local businesses and see if you can talk to people who currently hold those careers. Ask them what they like best about their profession, and what they hate about it. Ask them why they chose this path, and what other options they considered. You may even get the chance to volunteer, or work as an intern. In any case, you’ll get a firsthand look at what a career in this field looks like, which will provide much better information than hypothetical scenarios. If you can’t find people in this career field, consider talking to professors of the subjects you’ll need to study instead. 

Once you’ve taken these steps, you’ll have a better understanding of yourself, of the careers available to you, and of the support your campus can provide. You may not feel like your decision is perfect, but it doesn’t have to be—it just has to be good enough, and based on the best information available to you. There’s plenty of time to change and/or develop your career, so don’t worry if you change your mind later. 

Two definite improvements that show there is a new wave of education

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Over the past few years, education has changed immensely. In the past, education was viewed simply as a means to garner a graduation diploma. Recently, more and more students want to focus on education to understand and partake on different career paths. Additionally, the importance of education has risen in recent years as more authoritative figures understand its direct impacts on children. Through better means of education and learning, the whole industry has started to transform. Students can focus on their passions from an earlier age and teachers can change the manner in which lessons are delivered. This new wave of education has taken place by either direct or indirect influence from the advancements in technology as well as the newfound importance of mindfulness. It has never been easier for students to find personalized support for assignments simply by typing “pay someone to do my assignment” online. Teachers have begun to understand the impacts of concentration and peacefulness on the education provided. It is important to explore the 2 improvements more to understand their entire impact.

These are the 2 definite improvements that show there is a new wave of education:

  1. Technology

Education Technology otherwise known as Ed Tech, has become one of the largest growing industries in the past year. Technology has transformed the way in which education is delivered as well as the way in which students process the education material. Therefore, the growth of the Ed Tech industry has been inevitable, but more importantly, beneficial. A lot of new technological advancements, such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and personalized learning have made their way into daily classrooms. Artificial Intelligence, for example, is being used consistently worldwide for text-to-speech purposes; supporting dyslexic students as well as helping students learn new languages. Additionally technology has also allowed students to recognize their needs and become acquainted with a variety of platforms. The technological advancements have also started to find way into remote villages in countries around the world, overall increasing the impact of education worldwide.

  1. Mindfulness

Another aspect of education that has recently seen growth is the integration of mindfulness into the classroom. Much research has found that stress can be detrimental to a student’s success and that many different situations in the classroom can trigger it. Therefore, in recent years, as technology has also significantly decreased a student’s attention span, so has mindfulness. Meditation has become a way of punishment to help students learn calmness, while also being used in classrooms to improve focus. Additionally, schools are finding a link between artistic and academic intelligence incorporating more of the prior to the classrooms. Furthermore, education all over the world is being influenced by the addition of more “artistic” periods into the daily schedule as it assists in the learning of academic knowledge. Both of these innovations have helped increase student productivity as well as achievement.

Overall, this new wave of education has become a necessity to the system and the schools. Nonetheless, even though it has long-term and short-term benefits, the new additions need to be regulated carefully. Each aspect if not provided and added in a carefully organized manner can result in the opposite effect. The education system will continue changing as it will have to become 

The wild adventure of studying abroad

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Education is of course a unique adventure that is equal parts challenging and rewarding. This is even truer for higher education. As a college or university student, there is a world of opportunity available to you. It is important to always remember that access to education is a privilege, and one should always strive to embrace as many of the experiences and opportunities that come their way because of their education. There are many, many experiences and opportunities, and all of them have their own distinct advantages and benefits. It can be overwhelming, to say the least.

Without a doubt, one of the most exhilarating and unforgettable experiences you can have as a higher education student is one that is (perhaps surprisingly) off campus. Of course, higher education (and all avenues of education, for that matter) is about excelling and growing academically and intellectually, but it is also about growing personally. And what better way to do that during your years as a higher education student, than to head overseas to study for a semester or two. Studying abroad is an academic experience that is steadily drawing more and more students in with every new year.

The adventure of a student’s lifetime

Being a higher education student is an adventure in itself, but there is nothing quite like the wild adventure of embracing overseas study. Often aptly described as the adventure of a (student’s) lifetime, overseas study encourages students to embrace the unknown and dive deep into a world of adventure and wild experiences. Becoming a student of the world means that you are open and ready for new adventures, and willing to embrace them even when they are daunting, even scary, to begin with. When studying abroad, you have the best of both worlds, without the need to constantly be see-sawing between the two.

Embracing balance between life and study

Studying abroad gives you the chance to study while exploring and travelling the world. It is a sense of freedom that has not always been a possibility, and it remains quite unique for this fact even now. But with this once in a lifetime experience, comes the need to learn to balance between adventure and study. Some abroad students do so by studying throughout the week, giving them a night or two throughout the week to go out and explore, and the weekends for longer adventures. Others opt to seek the assistance of an essay writing service to help them keep up with their workload. Either way, finding the right balance for you is crucial.

Expanding your network before even graduating

One common problem among fresh college or university graduates is that by the time they graduate and take their first steps into the workforce, they find that it really can be all about who you know. In a world that has become more advanced and thus more competitive under the eye of digital and technological advancement, knowing the right people can make a world of difference. Studying abroad gives you the chance to expand your professional network not only before you have even graduated and entered the workforce, but around the world, making connections that you might never have if you had stayed at home. Use your experience studying abroad to network as well as learn and enjoy yourself in a new place.

Acing an interview straight out of college

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School does not quite prepare students for the real world. There is no class you can take to teach you how to submit your taxes, how it works and how to settle your utility bills. One of the most glaring problems in our education system is that we do not have a class dedicated solely to interviews. We have to learn through trial and error before becoming somewhat competent at interviews, but the secret lies in research and being proactive. 

Make sure you have something to offer the company

Fresh graduates often think that they are the shiny new penny that all companies should want. That kind of thinking is disappointing, and many learn quickly that if you do not have anything special to offer that makes you stand out from the rest of the herd, you will simply blend in. 

Taking a SEE program or having volunteer experience will make a resume stand out from one that lacks experience or further qualifications. Too many resumes are a carbon copy of the other with only extracurriculars making any (small) difference. 

What interviewer want to know when they ask you to talk about yourself

Probably one of the most stressful parts of an interview, the moment the interviewer asks you to tell them something not already on the resume or to talk about yourself. Where to begin? Career coach, Sarah Archer, suggests, “My best advice is to choose five things about yourself that are relevant to the job, eg your qualification, particular experience, specific skills you can bring and a passion or interest and use these to construct an answer. Don’t give too much detail.” 

You do not want to overwhelm the interviewer with oversharing but at the same time, you do not want to underwhelm the interviewer into thinking that there is truly nothing interesting about you. You can start with a quirk which is relevant to your job-scope, for instance, a passion for horseback riding and how it taught you perseverance and how you will be able to apply the same mentality to your position. 

Turn on the charm

Interviews do not have to be formal affairs where you put on a mask to hide anything human about yourself in a bid to seem ‘professional’. This is one of the biggest mistakes that people make because they think that is what companies want. The truth is, you can be professional and still be yourself. Inject a little humor and do not be afraid to let who you are show – it will make you a more memorable candidate. 

It is also worth noting that being awkward will carry and affect the atmosphere, making interviewers as uncomfortable as you are. If you are able to make your interviewers feel at ease, you have won half the game because it is psychologically proven that we gravitate towards those who make us feel good, comfortable and secure. 

Be honest but not divulge all the details

The truth about finding a job is on everyone’s mind: the pay. But it is something worth holding back on until you actually secure the job. Do not be afraid that you will not get another chance to discuss your pay before you are hired, you will. Also, if asked regarding why you left your previous job, it will be prudent to stay tight lipped and only share the absolute necessary, especially if there is negativity involved. 

The reasons sending abroad study enrolments surging upward

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Education is without a doubt one of the most prominent core components in modern life. As a student, there are so many different choices and paths to choose from throughout the journey. There are always new opportunities to be taken advantage of, new skills to be learned, and new chances to be considered. One of those choices that is proving to be exceedingly popular around the world is none other than abroad study. Once a niche offering available only to the richest of the rich, abroad study is now offered to the wider student body across the world, and it is becoming more and more popular a study approach with every passing day. It is little wonder, what with the opportunity to learn and adventure at the same time. Abroad study gives students an entirely unique chance to branch out from the ordinary and soar into the extraordinary.

The world as your oyster

Whether the underlying reason for studying abroad to master mandarin at a legitimate Chinese language school in China, or learn the arts in New York, USA, or any other manner of international study opportunities available to you, the point is always the same: in embracing and diving into studying overseas, you are understanding and taking advantage of the fact that the world is your oyster, and you are entirely in control of how that experience unfolds. Studying overseas gives students a literal world of opportunities to choose from. With nowhere to go but anywhere, there is excitement and lessons to be had around every corner, and from every angle.

Abroad study as the ultimate edge for future career prospects

It is no secret that employers these days are always looking for candidates who have something a little different in their resumes, to set them apart from the competition. What better way to insert that into your own resume, than to study overseas? Abroad study shows that you are willing to dive out of your comfort zone, to commit to an experience you know nothing about prior, and to embrace opportunities as they come at you. There is nothing quite like having real-world experience, and abroad study offers that up on a glittering silver platter, with all the trimmings to boot.

Studying overseas as a personal growth exercise

As well as broadening your horizons academically and intellectually, studying overseas also inevitably helps you to grow more as a person. In embracing and wholeheartedly accepting the challenging adventure of overseas study, you are effectively putting the wheels in motion to evolve more as an individual. There is much to be said about the power of embracing the unknown, and what it can do for the soul. Abroad study places you in the thick of the unknown, and effectively leaves you to your own devices to find your way through the process. It is both daunting and exciting, and there is no doubt that studying abroad will teach you more about yourself than your classes ever will. A true win-win, right?

Top Tools for Digital Librarians, Archivists and Historians

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At a time when the world is flooded with information from a variety of sources, it’s important to have a trustworthy resource to help them comb through, synthesize, and understand information. That’s where digital librarians, archivists, and historians come in.

Tracking and analyzing historical information is at the heart of their work; however, just because many people believe librarians aren’t necessary in the internet age, that isn’t the case. In fact, the internet can be a powerful tool to harness if you’re a librarian or archivist, speeding up your workflow and granting you access to information from millions of sources. From video search engines to periodicals, here are some top online tools to consider.

JSTOR

JSTOR is an incredible tool when it comes to finding work published in journals or books, as well as primary sources. Offering hundreds of free articles and journals available for anyone to access, as well as other digitized works, the repository of information available from JSTOR is especially helpful for researchers, students, and historians.

They’re even paving the way for future ways to search for sources, by rolling out the beta version of a powerful text analysis tool. This text analysis tool allows you to upload an existing document you are working on to be run through a text analysis program that identifies recurring topics in your document.

After analyzing the piece, JSTOR then suggests complementary sources and essays to further your understanding and research that already exist in their database.

Video Searches

Video content is becoming an increasingly important aspect of our history and how information is shared and spread. Just look at the rising concerns about doctored video and “deepfakes” to see how powerful video is in the information age.

It’s also worth noting that videos appear in thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of websites, from sources like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to websites such as Minds.com, Bitchute, and, of course, YouTube. Video search tools crawl and index video content from all of these sources, thus democratizing internet video by showcasing sources beyond YouTube.

This makes them very useful tool for researchers and librarians looking to find a wide swath of videos, and not just content filtered through one large company.

Archive.org

Another excellent repository of internet ephemera and content is Archive.org. Also known as the Internet Archive, this website grants users access to millions of movies, audio files, images, computer programs, and books. The Internet Archive also archives websites through its search engine, the Wayback Machine, which allows you to view historical records and previous iterations of websites from over the years.

The videos available for viewing through archive.org are also indexed as part of Petey Vid, allowing for an exchange of utilization between the two platforms. One of the best features of the Internet Archive is the fact that everything is provided to users completely free of charge, thanks to its role as a non-profit organization. Perhaps most impressively, the Internet Archive boasts the preservation of a whopping 45 petabytes (or 45,000,000,000,000,000 bytes) of data.

While some associate search engines like Google with the demise of libraries and historians, the internet is empowering researches to work better, smarter, and more deeply. The above resources are just a few examples of the way that the internet is revolutionizing and revitalizing research.

6 Tips to Improve Your Grades in University

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University and college can be a challenge experience. On the one hand, you’re told to enjoy the college experience and fun with your new friends. But on the other hand, you need to focus on studying and keeping your grades up. It can be hard to find a balance between both sides. But there are a couple of helpful tips you can use that’ll make your experience flow smoothly.

Attend all your classes

You may think you don’t need to go to every class, but skipping a class or two can have you falling behind. Some students think that hiring professional academic writing services will help them ace the class. And though they can help with essays, they’re not able to help with exams. By going to all classes, you’ll absorb the material, earn attendance marks, and earn bonus points. In other words, go to school!

Be realistic with what you can handle

If this is your first year in college or university, you don’t really have a firm understanding of what the workload will be like. Though it may be appealing to take more classes, set a healthy limit for yourself. Take no more than four or five classes. If you take too many classes, it could affect your GPA if you’re overwhelmed with work.

Take notes

This is another great reason why you should attend all your classes. If you want to absorb the class material and have detailed study notes to refer to, then you need to put the time into taking notes. Writing-to-learn literature will not only help you when it comes to exams, but it’ll help you understand the material.

Study smartly

Some students waste a lot of time studying material that’s not going to be on the exam. Some exams cover the entire class material, and others focus on the main chapters. Don’t waste time studying everything. Instead, focus on the main points in each chapter. In addition, ask the professor the type of questions that are going to be on the exam, and the content that will be included.

Connect with your professor

Usually, when the class ends, students are quick to leave. But this is your opportunity to talk to your professor, asking them any questions you have. Your professor is a source of wealth, and getting to know them will certainly benefit your grades. Ask when their office hours are, and spend time getting as much information as you can from them.

Believe in yourself

You may think it’s silly, but a good attitude can make or break your grade. If you don’t believe in yourself, then how are you going to ace a class? If math, for example, isn’t your strong suit, don’t let it ruin you. Instead, talk to your professor and get a tutor. You’re in school because you were accepted. Which means the school saw value in your abilities.

College/university can be a great experience in both your academic and social life. Use these tips during your education, and you’ll see a massive improvement in your life.