Happy New year 2017 – Starting strong…

Published on: January 9, 2017

Filled Under: Academic success, Learner-Focus/Accelerate Learning, Learning

Views: 4486


What is your New Year’s’ resolution? It is time to think about what your new goals for 2017 are. What about setting some academic goals that can ultimately make a difference in your academic and personal success.

Well, on a personal note, I guess I need to lead by example, so in 2017, I am committing to writing more and keep this blog alive. I often say that writing is thinking. If we don’t spend more time writing, we may be wasting the opportunity to think deeply and meaningfully. Therefore, I hope this blog could serve as a tool to initiate productive conversations with students, alumni and whoever else wants to react to ideas and challenges.

This brings a good point that relates well with how students can successfully improve their academic performance. I would say that writing is one of the most important academic skills, and therefore students must focus on improving their writing and thinking process.

The first step is to fall in love with learning. You can learn anywhere, at work, at home, and at school. You can develop a stronger writing voice by leveraging on your experiences and making connections with concepts, theories and perspectives. Once you find the joy of learning, you will be able to produce excellent work and go above and beyond expectations.

Second, reading your textbooks while making connections to your experience is another excellent way to find good material to fill your academic essays and class projects. Thus, taking notes while reading would provide a better way to keep track of your evolution of thoughts and ideas. If you have a textbook full of tabs and notes often means you are reacting well to your reading and thinking process. Don’t be afraid of highlighting and writing on your textbook; but if you are, just keep a notebook to take those valuable notes. Make sure you organize those ideas by chapters and reference page numbers. Later on, when you start your writing process, you will have plenty of ideas to connect to.

Third, I just got a question for you, have you visited our DCTC library? If you have not you must set a time to visit and get to know our librarians. Our library is an excellent place for quiet time and learning, and librarians are there to help and direct you to find the best sources to complete your college assignments. You should also pick up any book to compliment your readings. Our library has best selling and brand new books available for your to read to keep yourself current, so just commit to reading something meaningful one hour a day. Please go to https://www.dctc.edu/support-services/library/ to learn more about resources.

Finally, we have an excellent center for student success, and right next to it, we have a writing center. Our writing tutors will be glad to read your papers and help you improve your writing. Please visit https://www.dctc.edu/support-services/center-for-student-success/ and https://www.dctc.edu/support-services/center-for-student-success/writing-center/.

I am also adding an interesting TED Talk video on reading in this post. Click here to watch it: Reinventing Reading…

I wish you a very successful semester, please feel free to contact me with questions and suggestions.


Harold E. Torrence MAM, MAPA, EdD

Business and Management and Spanish Faculty

Diversity Council Chair

Dakota County Technical College

Direct: 651-423-8606

Email: harold.torrence@dctc.edu

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