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*School of Education*

Library and Learning Services information hub for all things School of Education.

Learning Skills

Test Taking

Read on for test taking tips and tricks:

Prepare for your tests from the beginning by studying effectively!

  • Read all your assignments

  • Take notes

    • Cornell Notetaking System

    • Consider handwriting your notes, there is new evidence that handwriting activates an additional part of your brain that helps you remember what you wrote

  • Listen actively

  • Attend live lectures and office hours

  • Re-read your notes on a regular basis

  • Learn from your errors - this pre-test checklist and post-test reflection will help

Work on Anti-Anxiety Techniques

Time Management

We have a number of resources that might help you manage your time:

  1. Visit the Managing Your Time tab of our Student Success guide.
  2. Visit our Time Management Cookbook; it has time management tips plus some time-saving recipes!
  3. Make an appointment with a Rasmussen student tutor, who can provide you with time management tips and advice. In Tutor Match, select Success Skills in the Topic drop down and then select Time Management from the Subject drop down menu
  4. Make a time management planner for yourself that breaks down your schedule on an hourly basis over the course of a given week.
  5. Keep track of your study time (perhaps using your planner) so you can identify the "right" amount of time to spend for each course, for the grade you want. 
    • Use a version of the table below to set study time goals.  After you fill it out, review how many hours you are over / under related to your grades in the course.  The table provides an example of how the tracker works because it is already filled out.​​ You can create your own using Excel or the tables feature in Microsoft Word.

Note Taking

Want to make sure you get the most out of your notes? Follow these tips!

Step 1:  Observe

  •    Start by entering the classroom (physical or virtual) with a positive attitude.
  •    Make a conscious effort to pay attention.
  •    Be prepared to take notes from the instructor as well as from videos, e-content, PowerPoints, etc. 

Step 2:  Record

  •   Start each new lecture on a new notebook page.  Date and number each page   and keep them organized.  You may choose to do this digitally as well.
  •    If using a paper notebook, write on only one side of the paper for neatness.
  •    Keep your notes short, focusing on the main points.
  •    Develop a system of abbreviations and symbols you can use wherever possible.
  •    Note all unfamiliar vocabulary or concepts.

Step 3:  Review

  •    As soon after as possible, go back and fill in words and phrases that are unclear.
  •    Compare your notes with the textbook reading and fill in important details in the blank spaces you left.
  •    Note anything you do not understand by underlining or highlighting to remind you to ask the     instructor.
  •    Review your notes after 24 hours to help fix new information to long-term memory.
  •    Consider making flashcards or mind maps from your notes and use these to test yourself regularly.

Note-taking Methods

  • Outline –  Illustrates and organizes major points and ideas.
  • Mind map – Guides thinking and helps create distinctions and connections
  • Chart – Provides visual review for memorization of facts and relationships
  • Cornell method – Divide your note paper into three sections:  notes in the right column, key words and questions in the left column, and a summary at the bottom of the page. This can be done in a paper notebook or electronically (for example, a table in Word).
  • There are also other methods. Follow this link to Dartmouth College's Skill Center on note taking. The handout on taking lecture notes gives extensive advice on some techniques you can use to make your life easier!

Use Critical Thinking Skills

  • Rephrase what you are reading in your own words. In your e-book, you can type an immediate note on the page/paragraph you are reading.  Example:  “This basically says ____.”
  • Notate your opinions about a particular paragraph/section.  Example:  “I think this is interesting because ____.”
  • Document why this section is important for you.  Example:  “The instructor mentioned this 3 times in live lecture.”
  • Think ahead:  Where will this note fit into a paper or help you prepare for a test?  Examples:  “This will be a great point for the first part of my research paper.”

*Remember, your e-textbook allows you to view the notes you take in multiple ways (i.e., all on one page, via thumbnails, etc.) for easy reference.

Writing Help

The Writing Guide

Access The Writing Guide by clicking here: https://guides.rasmussen.edu/writing

The Writing Guide provides assistance with all the various writing assignments that you may encounter while in college. In the Writing Guide you will find step-by-step instructions that will help with the writing process along with beneficial resources. Below you will find all the writing topics that are highlighted within the Guide. Click a link to be taken to that specific page within the Guide.

The APA Guide

Access The APA Guide by clicking here: https://guides.rasmussen.edu/apa

Use the APA Guide to find help with formatting, creating in-text citations, and references. It is recommended that you start by watching the short navigational video on the homepage. 

Grammarly

Grammarly Log in: https://www.grammarly.com/signin?page=edu

What:

  • Grammarly is a software that is free to Rasmussen students and staff.
  • Grammarly checks for grammar, mechanics, spelling, word usage, and even plagiarism.
  • Grammarly is NOT a replacement for working with your instructor, a writing tutor, or the Writing Lab in our Online Tutoring Service (aka Brainfuse) .
  • There is no limit on the number of papers you can submit to Grammarly. Submit away!

Why:

  • It is a tool that will help you present your best work to your instructor.
  • When you turn in a paper that has already been reviewed by Grammarly, your instructor is then free to really focus on the content, what you have learned, without being distracted by writing errors.
  • Grammarly will help you build your confidence as you work towards becoming a better writer.

When:

24 hours a day / 7 days a week. Grammarly will provide almost instant feedback anytime because it is an automated (computerized) service.

How:

  • For directions on how to create a Grammarly accountclick here.
  • For directions on how to use Grammarly's online versionclick here.
  • For directions on how to use Grammarly's plug-in version, click here

The Writing Lab

You can use the Writing Lab to get feedback on your writing. 

Click here to Connect to the Online Tutoring Service (Brainfuse).

Click on Writing Lab.

Once there, attach you paper using the Browse feature. Add any comments about what you'd like the writing expert to look for and/or attach your assignment instructions. Then click on Submit.

Once you have submitted your paper, wait 24-48 hours or until you get an email, and then go back into the Writing Lab. Look for the Message Center to find feedback for your paper! Writing Lab services continue through the weekend with no interruption.

Your feedback might come in a variety of forms. You might get comments within the paper itself, you might get virtual "sticky" notes, or you might get commentary at the beginning or end of your paper.