Below are the types of articles, audios, and other materials that can be found at Learning At College Strategy Blog, along with brief descriptions. Please also see “Content Descriptions” for an in-depth discussion of each article.
Membership Level IV
College Skills Inventory (CSI)TM
The College Skills InventoryTM (CSI) helps pre-college students to measure whether their current skills, habits, and characteristics will allow them to succeed in the higher education environment. It was developed over 10 years from the experiences of students who attended four-year colleges across the U.S. The CSI:
- Breaks down the skills, habits, and characteristics needed for college success in to core areas represented by scales and subscales. Each core area is critical to college success, and the scales and subscales summarize them for an easy understanding of a student’s strengths and weaknesses.
- Shows results in scales and subscales that include critical skill areas like Reading and Studying, Test Preparation, Papers and Writing, and more. It also scales that measure areas that support academic success like Being Proactive, Asking For Help, Work Style, and many others.
- Identifies possible student weaknesses that should be addressed before college, such as inconsistent studying, lack of study skills, experience learning from texts, exam preparation, effective time management, and more.
- The College Skills InventoryTM takes 20 to 30 minutes for students to complete. It is in a simple format, with instant scoring, and students can download the results upon completion.
Membership Level III
Applied Learning Skills Inventory (ALSI)TM
- Based on interviews with more than 3,500 students and 2,000 courses at two- and for-year colleges across the U.S. over 10+ years.
- Covers the real-life skills that students need to succeed on course requirements in higher education. Includes not just study or organizational skills, but also supportive areas like motivation for learning, student engagement, productivity, environmental factors, and many others.
- Content areas are broken down in domains of skills, then summarized in to scales, subscales, and specialized scales that can alert students and colleges to problem areas.
- Questions contain answer explanations that describe how to be successful on each topic, which serves as a built in correction and teaching tool.
- Scale and subscale areas include Reading and Studying, Papers and Writing, and other academic areas plus supportive ones like Being Proactive, Asking For Help, Productivity, and more.
- Takes only 15-20 minutes to complete.
- Results display scales and subscales, as well as scale descriptions, corrected answers, and answer explanations.
Membership Level II
Student Self-Assessment For Academic Underperformance®
- New for the 2016-2017 year: A more detailed version, complete with scales, subscales, and special scales to more precisely identify problem areas.
- Questions now include scales for many areas to quickly identify known problems that can lead students to work below their potential during college. Takes 15-20 minutes to complete. This is the same self-assessment that is in the Improving Academic Underperformance® In College online course.
- Designed based on multiple domains, such as academic skills, motivation, student characteristics, and real-life issues students have faced that lead them to Academic Underperformance® during college.
- Meant to help uncover why students are working below their potential during college and targets areas of improvement before their grades fall too far.
- Answer explanations teach the correct skills or perspectives by describing how High Performing college students handle each academic topic.
Learning Section One (Membership Level I)
Now Free! Try out the site by reading Learning Section One! No membership required.
Contains five items:
This is a one-hour (55 minute) audio mini-course, in which I walk parents and students through six key sections after an introduction. After a brief overview of college issues in the U.S. I discuss parent experiences with college problems, what they often tell me, and the various reactions they can have. Then a parent exercise is used to help them to identify commonly occurring positive and negative factors for college issues to examine if they are at play in their student’s situation. I then turn to what students experience when they do poorly in college and add an encouraging message for students having problems in college.
This 14 page article is the result of my review of more than 100 different kinds of programs offered at various colleges, and it breaks them down in to understandable categories to help parents and students digest what they are. It looks at efforts that can be made during and after the semester, what “appealing a course grade” really means, a detailed look at three categories of grade “forgiveness” or “amnesty” programs offered across colleges, as well as special circumstance efforts at grade correction for after the semester ends.
In this 12 page article I discuss some approaches that students can consider if they are trying to transfer to another college with a low GPA. I discuss the different routes I’ve seen students successfully take to transfer and share much of what admission counselors have told me about transferring with less than stellar grades. I also discuss what type of four-year college has shown more lenience toward bad grades, common feedback that admission departments give about what they want to see for acceptance, and how student enrollment status can make a difference for being accepted.
Many of the students I talk to personally often ask me exactly what they should be doing on a daily and weekly basis to help gauge their own academic efforts. This 18 page article discusses key things that I routinely tell students that they should consider doing if they wish to improve their grades. It covers a range of considerations, including grading, work, setting priorities, learning process and content, and even gives a rule of thumb to estimate how long they should be working on a subject each week. This article is also a nice way for students and parents to measure the student’s current status and actions against a more objective view to see if they are making worthwhile efforts are not doing them at all.
One of the most common problems that all students in college face is procrastination. This 11 page written article (displayed in two long web pages) covers nine of the most common things that students say practically guarantee that they will procrastinate. This article is based on what dozens of students I’ve worked with have told me, and I describe them in depth and talk about how to overcome each trap. Discussed are procrastination traps that appear as kinds of class assignments, types of exams, various class formats, kinds of homework, specific projects, and administrative requirements that students say they tend to put off finishing when faced with them.
No sign up required for Learning Section One!