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Academic Support Resources

Useful Internet Resources | Learning Styles and Study Skills | Workshops and SeminarsQuiet Study Options | Internet Access | Copying and Printing


The resources on this page are compiled from the work of academic support professionals nationwide, as well as the National College Learning Center Association.  Links to non-college sites do not represent endorsement by South Piedmont Community College or its affiliates.

Useful Internet Resources

General Purpose Sites

Business/Accounting/Economics

English/writing/grammar

Mathematics

Placement Test Preparation

Reading

Science

Study Skills

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Learning Styles and Study Skills

Academic success begins with developing good learning strategies and study skills. What type of learner are you? This is one of the most important questions you can ask yourself. Knowing the answer will help you study more effectively and efficiently. To find out more, check out one of the links below, or complete an online version of the Learning Styles Inventory located at: http://www.edutopia.org/multiple-intelligences-learning-styles-quiz

Learning Styles:

Characteristics of an Auditory Learner:

  • Learns best when information is presented auditory in an oral language format
  • In a classroom, benefits from listening t lecture and participating in group discussion
  • Retains information well by hearing it from an audio tape
  • When trying to remember something you can often "hear" the way someone told you the information, or the way you previously repeated it out loud
  • Learns best when interacting with others in a listening/speaking exchange
  • May becomes bored easily during silent filmstrips or when problems are to be done silently in class
  • Tends to listen to movies instead of actually watching them
  • Often has poor handwriting
  • Usually does not like to draw or sketch
  • Often does not copy notes from a chalkboard accurately
  • Often reverses or omits letters when writing them
  • May rub eyes frequently or say that they are bothering him
  • Often holds the material close to face when reading
  • Looks like their head is on the table when writing
  • May have trouble spelling in written work but can spell well verbally
  • May have trouble remembering what was read if it was not vocalized
  • Often confuses words that look similar in written texts
  • Usually likes classes with active group discussions and remembers the material well
  • Usually is very talkative
  • May make consistent errors in math (inattention to signs, reverses numbers, etc.)
  • Often talks to self or mumbles when doing assignments in class
  • Often points at what is being read
  • Class work and tests do not seem to show student's potential

Study tips for the Auditory Learner:

  • Join a study group to assist you in learning course material. Or, work with a "study buddy" on an ongoing basis to review key information and prepare for exams.
  • When studying by yourself, talk out loud to aid recall. Get yourself in a room where you won't be bothering anyone and read your notes and textbook out loud.
  • Tape-record your lectures (with professor's permission). Use the 'pause' button to avoid taping irrelevant information. Use a tape recorder equipped with a 3-digit counter. At the beginning of each lecture, set your counter to '000.' If a concept discussed during lecture seems particularly confusing, glance at the counter number and jot it down in your notes. Later, you can fast forward to that number to review the material that confused you during lecture. Making use of a counter and pause button while tape recording allows you to avoid the tedious task of having to listen to hours and hours of lecture tape.
  • Use audio tapes such as commercial books on tape to aid recall. Or, create your own audio tapes by reading notes and textbook information into a tape recorder. When preparing for an exam, review the tapes on your car tape player or on a "Walkman" player whenever you can.
  • When learning mathematical or technical information, "talk your way" through the new information. State the problem in your own words. Reason through solutions to problems by talking out loud to yourself or with a study partner. To learn a sequence of steps, write them out in sentence form and read them out loud.
  • Vervalize as much as possible.

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Characteristics of a Visual Learner:

  • Learns best when information is presented visually and in a picture or design format.
  • In a classroom setting, benefits from instructors who use visual aids such as film, video, maps and charts
  • Benefit from information obtained from the pictures and diagrams in textbooks
  • Tend to like to work in a quiet room and may not like to work in study groups
  • When trying to remember something, can often visualize a picture of it in their mind
  • May have an artistic side that enjoys activities having to do with visual art and design
  • May not remember verbal directions
  • Often asks to have questions or instructions repeated
  • Frequently appears to daydream during class or lecture
  • May have a limited vocabulary
  • Often has poor articulation
  • May watch the teacher's lips closely
  • May become distracted or start a conversation with another student if the teacher's back is turned while explaining things at the blackboard
  • Watches others when directions are given and then follows their lead
  • Often dislikes music class and prefers art class
  • Usually says "huh" a lot
  • Prefers to do demonstrations rather than to tell, explain or report on a subject
  • May get lost in rote memorization drills in class
  • Often answers with one word answers or incomplete sentences
  • May misunderstand instruction and other material presented verbally
  • Often dislikes speaking in front of groups

Study tips for the Visual Learner:

  • Make flashcards of key information that needs to be memorized. Draw symbols and pictures on the cards to facilitate recall. Use highlighter pens to highlight key words and pictures on the flashcards. Limit the amount of information per card, so your mind can take a mental "picture' of the information.
  • Mark up the margins of your textbook with key words, symbols, and diagrams that help you remember the text. Use highlighter pens of contrasting colors to "color code" the information.
  • When learning mathematical or technical information, make charts to organize the information. When a mathematical problem involves a sequence of steps, draw a series of boxes, each containing the appropriate bit of information in sequence.
  • Use large square graph paper to assist in creating charts and diagrams that illustrate key concepts.
  • Use the computer to assist in organizing material that needs to be memorized. Using word processing, create tables and charts with graphics that help you to understand and retain course material. Use spreadsheet and database software to further organize material that needs to be learned.
  • As much as possible, translate words and ideas into symbols, pictures, and diagrams.

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Characteristics of a Tactile/Kinesthetic Learner:

  • Learns best when physically engaged in a "hands on" activity
  • In the classroom, benefits from a lab setting where they can manipulate materials to learn new information
  • Learns best when they can be physically active in the learning environment
  • Benefits from instructors who encourage in-class demonstrations, "hands on" student learning experiences, and fieldwork outside the classroom.
  • Bears down extremely hard with pencil or pen when writing
  • Often enjoys working with tools
  • Remembers best by writing things down several times
  • Often plays with coins or keys in pockets
  • May chew gum, smoke, or snack during studies
  • Learns spelling by "finger spelling" the words
  • Often is good at working and solving jigsaw puzzles and mazes
  • Often doesn't like to read directions, would rather just do it
  • Learns best when shown how to do something and then have the opportunity to do it
  • Often prefers not to study at a desk
  • Think better when they have the freedom to move around
  • When they can't think of a specific word, uses hands a lot and calls something a "what-cha-ma-call-it" or a "thing-a-ma-jig"
  • Often needs frequent breaks during studying
  • Usually not skilled in giving verbal explanations or directions

Study tips for the Tactile/Kinesthetic Learner:

  • To help you stay focused on class lecture, sit near the front of the room and take notes throughout the class period. Don't worry about correct spelling or writing in complete sentences. Jot down key words and draw pictures or make charts to help you remember the information you are hearing.
  • When studying, walk back and forth with textbook, notes, or flashcards in hand and read the information out loud.
  • Think of ways to make your learning tangible, i.e. something you can put your hands on. For example, make a model that illustrates a key concept. Spend extra time in a lab setting to learn an important procedure. Spend time in the field (e.g. a museum, historical site, or job site) to gain first-hand experience of your subject matter.
  • To learn a sequence of steps, make 3 x 5 flashcards for each step.
    • Arrange the cards on a table top to represent the correct sequence.
    • Put words, symbols, or pictures on your flashcards -- anything that helps you remember the information.
    • Use highlighter pens in contrasting colors to emphasize important points.
    • Limit the amount of information per card to aid recall.
    • Practice putting the cards in order until the sequence becomes automatic.
  • When reviewing new information, copy key points onto a chalkboard, easel board, or other large writing surface.
  • Learn and practice new material by relying on your sense of touch.
    • Copy and paraphrase notes
    • Use your computer as much as possible
    • Trace words with your finger or the eraser end of a pencil.
       

Study Skills Resources
The following internet resources can assist you in improving your study skills and learning strategies:

General Study Skills Sites

Understanding the Textbook

Taking Lecture Notes

Preparing for Tests

Understanding lectures

Understanding the Subject Matter

Time Management

Organization

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Workshops and Seminars

Technology Workshops for Currently Enrolled SPCC Students
Do you know how to access your SPCC Gmail account or Moodle classes? Do you regularly use the SPCC GO! student portal? If not, please plan to attend one of the technology workshops being held at the SPCC Academic Support Centers during January 2012. Advance registration is not required, but you will need to provide a valid SPCC student ID. Workshop seating is limited to 10 participants. To learn more, please visit one of the Academic Support Centers, or email AskTheASC@spcc.edu.

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Quiet Study Options

Students are encouraged to visit either Academic Support Center location during operating hours and take advantage of the quiet study atmosphere.

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Internet Access

Each Academic Support Center offers computer workstations equipped with internet access. Individuals who use the workstations must abide by all applicable SPCC computer use policies.

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Copying and Printing
 
Each Academic Support Center offers printing and copying services for $.10 per sheet. SPCC Print Cards are required, and may be purchased at the SPCC Business Office.

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