Monday Morning Advice: Making the Most Out of the Gen Eds

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As if transitioning to college wasn’t hard enough, you’ve just spoken with your advisor for the first time and found out about the gen eds – and, breaking it down, realized that you have to take thirty credits’ worth of classes. Everyone drones on and on about the gen eds, so you already have a pretty negative outlook on them. Worst part? They might not even go towards your major. What is AU trying to do here?

Believe it or not, the gen eds actually have a lot of good qualities – and many students truly find their passion because of the program. The lovely folks from Bob’s Burgers are here to give some great tips on how to get the most out of these classes.

The name (might) say it all
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If you read a course title and can’t resist, go for it! Who cares if you’re an SPA student interested in an art history course?

Vary it up
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Taking the same class over and over again can start to get a little boring. By taking classes in all different areas, you get to have a new experience in every class. Boredom doesn’t even waste its time with you.

Coordinate with a friend
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Having a permanent study buddy for a full semester can be a super helpful method for success in a course. Just make sure you’re not distracting each other and you’ll still be able to get some work done!

Participate!
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Hiding in the back of the class won’t do you any good – plain and simple. Ask questions. Answer questions. Be the only one in class to raise your hand. Trying is better than nothing!

Ask the weird questions the reading brought up
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Ask any and all the questions you have! Since you’re becoming a ~pro~ at participating, you’re going to be thinking critically about the topic. Questions may lead to thought-provoking conversations, and the professor will appreciate the fact that you’re doing your best to understand and work with the material.

Talk to the professor
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Professors will understand if you’re taking the course for gen ed credit and they can offer some cool ideas for you to consider to get you interested in the material!

Don’t look at it as a “wasted credit”
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Don’t think of it as a class you have to get through, because you’ll only enjoy it as much as you let yourself. Look at every class as an opportunity to learn something new. You’re in the class for the semester, so you might as well put your best effort into it and really get something out of the course. Who knows? You might change your entire belief about a topic after one really great Gen Ed class with an awesome professor!

Remember: you’re never too cool to learn something new
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If you go in with the mindset that the class is going to be dumb or lame, your attitude will cause the class to be dumb or lame. Don’t be afraid to be really interested in something!

Relate the content back to another interest
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Taking one class doesn’t make all other topics off limits. When a project rolls around, see if there is a way to relate it back to another interest and create a hybrid, super cool, A+ earning extravaganza.

Have a confident attitude
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Getting the grade you want is all about how much you put into it. If you get interested, get involved, and get hyped, you’ll be able to show the professor that you deserve it. So take on those gen eds! And don’t forget to ask the Peer Advisors any questions you have about requirements!

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