The biology course at UMW will go more in depth and be at a faster pace that you might be used to. This can be shocking initially but the following suggestions will help you to successfully navigate the transition to UMW Biology.
Introduce yourself to you professor and visit their office hours during the first week of class.
- Ask questions during class and during office hours (these are the times set aside for you to get the full attention of your professor to help with course work!)
- Find others in your class to study with and set up study groups.
- Take notes – don’t write down everything being said, but do write down main points and detailed examples. Study these notes along with lecture PowerPoints, reading the text book and utilizing the lab manual.
- Read the textbook before coming to class!
- You should be studying 3 hours outside of class for every 1 hour you are in class. For some classes you may need to devote a bit more time.
- After exams or assignments – tray to figure out what you did wrong and then go and talk to your professor to see if you now have a better understanding of the material and why you got something wrong.
One note on workload: The work load for UMW is 12 to 15 hours for full-time students. That means that between in class time and study and out of class time you should be spending around 60 hours a week on school work. While working might be a necessity, do understand that pursing a Biology degree is demanding and students that work a good deal do not tend to do well in their coursework. If possible limit how much you work to 10 -20 hours a week.