ENGR1201 Chapter 5

Chapter 5
Making the Learning Process Work for You

Chapter Overview
Skills for learning
Reading for comprehension
Problem solving
Organizing your learning process
Preparing for and taking tests
Making effective use of your peers

Reading for Comprehension
What to do before you read?
What to do while you read?
What to do after you read?

Before You Read
Establish a purpose for the reading

Survey/skim/preview

Make a list of questions to be answered

While You Read
Read actively
Focus on understanding concepts thoroughly
Take your time; don’t try to read too fast
Write down questions that need to be answered about anything you don’t understand
Periodically, stop and recite (ideally aloud) what you have read

After You Read
Recite answers to the questions you prepared before you started reading. Reread where needed.
Review within a day; again in a week; when you prepare for an exam; and when you prepare for the final exam
Solve problems

Analytical Problem Solving
Step 1 – Understand the problem
Step 2 – Devise a plan
Step 3 – Carry out the plan
Step 4 – Look back

Organizing Your Learning Process
Take it as it comes”
Procrastination
Mastering the material
Learn to manage your time
Priority management

Take It As It Comes
Don’t allow the next class session in a course to come without having mastered the material presented in the previous class session.

Take It As It Comes is
perhaps the most powerful concept in Studying Engineering!

Procrastination
Choosing to put off something we know we should be doing and instead do something we know we shouldn’t be doing.”

Reasons for procrastination
Fear of failure
Fear of success
Low tolerance for unpleasant tasks
Disorganized

Mastering the Material
Learn from your lecture notes

Reread the text

Solve problems

Learning From Your Lecture Notes (Cornell Note-Taking Method)
Study and annotate your notes
Formulate a question answered by each section of your notes and write it in the “cue column”
Write a summary of each page in the summary area at the bottom
Recite answers to questions in the “cue column”
Reflect on what you have learned
Review (at least weekly)

Cornell Note-Taking Method
Study and annotate your notes

Cornell Note-Taking Method
Formulate a question answered by each section of your notes and write it in the “cue column”

Cornell Note-Taking Method
Write a summary of each page in the summary area at the bottom

Cornell Note-Taking Method
Recite answers to questions in the “cue column”

Cornell Note-Taking Method
Reflect on what you have learned

Cornell Note-Taking Method
Review (at least weekly)

Learn to Manage Your Time
Place a high value on your time
Schedule your time
Make a serious commitment to your study time

Benefits of Scheduling Your Study Time
See if you are overextended
More likely to keep up in your classes
Provide feedback as to how much you are studying
You’ll learn what you can do and can’t do
You’ll feel that you have more time
You’ll feel much less stressed-out over school

How Many Hours Should You Study?
How difficult is the course?
How good a student are you?
How well prepared are you for the course?
What grade do you want to receive?

Making Up Your Weekly Schedule
Block out all of your commitments
Remainder of time is available for one of two purposes
Schedule your study time to avoid wasting time answering three questions:

Block out all of your commitments
classes, meetings, part-time work, time to get to and from school, time for meals, etc

Remainder of time is available for one of two purposes
– 1) study; or 2) recreation

Schedule your study time to avoid wasting time answering three questions:
Should I study now or later?
Where should I study?
What subject should I study?

Priority Management Per Stephen Covey – Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
Decide what has high personal value (school, family, health, etc)
For each thing that needs to be done decide:
How urgent is it? (Requires immediate attention; doesn’t require immediate attention)
How important is it based on personal values? (Important; or not important)
Unimportant things whether urgent or not – ignore
Things that are both important and urgent (crisis management) – must be tended to
Things that are important but not urgent – tending to them is the key to overall effectiveness

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
Decide what has high personal value (school, family, health, etc)

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
For each thing that needs to be done decide:
How urgent is it? (Requires immediate attention; doesn’t require immediate attention)
How important is it based on personal values? (Important; or not important)

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
Unimportant things whether urgent or not – ignore

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
Things that are both important and urgent (crisis management) – must be tended to

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
Things that are important but not urgent – tending to them is the key to overall effectiveness

Preparing For Tests
Schedule time for review
“Scope out” tests
Practice under time pressure
Get a good night’s sleep
Make sure you have the right materials and tools
Arrive early

Test-Taking Strategies
Size up the test
Work the easier problems first
Be aware of the time
Complete a problem before leaving it
If time permits, check and recheck your work (never leave a test early)
Other?

Making Effective Use of Your Peers
Overview of collaborative learning
Benefits of group study
Frequently asked questions

Learning Modes
Solitary
Collaborative

Solitary
You learn by yourself

Collaborative
You learn with others

R. Landis
“My anecdotal research indicates that about 90 percent of first-year engineering students do virtually 100 percent of their studying alone.”

Class Poll on Collaborative Learning
How many of you spend some fraction of your study time on a regular basis studying with at least one other student?
How many of you spend virtually 100 percent of your study time studying alone?
For those who study alone – “Why don’t you study with other students?
For those who study with other students – “How is it working for you?”

Class Poll on Collaborative Learning
How many of you spend some fraction of your study time on a regular basis studying with at least one other student?

Class Poll on Collaborative Learning
How many of you spend virtually 100 percent of your study time studying alone?

Class Poll on Collaborative Learning
For those who study alone – “Why don’t you study with other students?
For those who study with other students – “How is it working for you?”

Why Do Students Study Alone?
I learn more studying by myself.

I don’t have anyone to study with.

It’s not right. You’re supposed to do your own work.

Benefits of Group Study
You’ll be better prepared for the engineering “work-world”

You’ll learn more

You’ll enjoy it more

Benefits of Group Study
You’ll be better prepared for the engineering “work-world”

Benefits of Group Study
You’ll learn more

Benefits of Group Study
You’ll enjoy it more

Frequently Asked Questions
What percentage of my studying should be done in groups?

What is the ideal size of a study group?

What can be done to keep the group from getting off task?

Group Discussion Benefits of Group Study
In your group, discuss the benefits of working with other students on your academic work.
Appoint a leader to keep the discussion on topic and a recorder to write down and report what was learned

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