This week is Midterm and Spring Break rolled into one. Eight more weeks left and an excellent opportunity to recharge and move forward with renewed enthusiasm. So when I had a student come to me the Friday before break and ask, “What do I need to do to pass your class? Do you like chocolate?” (Go ahead, you can cringe and laugh at the same time, I know I did), I had a little time on my hands to address the topic of using bribery in college to gain successful outcomes.
For the student mentioned above, it’s too late. Twenty assignments missed, one failed exam and one missed exam, does not make for a passing grade no matter how much chocolate the student is prepared to throw my way. Plus, I had tried and failed to roundup some work from this student several weeks ago on more than one occasion.
So what does make a successful semester, a successful student, or as this student implied, how do you successfully suck up to your professor?
In characteristic David Letterman style, I developed my top ten list, but I am in editing mode these days and I whittled it down to five.
#5. BE PRESENT (not to be confused with giving presents)
This applies not only to attendance, although there is a lot to be said for showing up to class, to succeed you must do more. You must be in the moment, not ruminating about tomorrow’s test in another class, the pile of laundry you left behind or whether or not you fed the cat (note: they can go a couple days, but will be angry, very angry). To be truly present means to leave everything else at the classroom door. I promise you, I am thinking of nothing else but the class at hand when I’m in the classroom, and you should too.
Tomorrow…#4 BE PREPARED
Photo credit © Slallison