10:00am Monday morning was my first class at Oregon State University and I had it in Milam 026. At the time I figured Milam 026 would be like a regular high school classroom with maybe 30 desks placed in rows in front of a chalkboard with room for the professor to teach. Walking into the classroom I was greeted with the dull roar of 500 other students all awake at ten in the morning ready for biology 211. Like many students who first have a class in such a large space I didn’t know what to do. Unsure of what to do I stood in the front of the room looking at the sea of people who all seemed adjusted and ready to go. As if this auditorium was a normal classroom for them and they expected nothing else. Thankfully one of my floor mates saw me and yelled me over next to her and some other students I knew. They were sitting near the front and they had saved me a spot and from then on I knew that the front of the class was where I needed to be. Yet some students do not have the same luxuries I had and might not know where to sit or how to learn in such a large classroom. Below you will find some of my tips and tricks to maximize your learning in some of our larger classrooms on campus.
Sit near the front – Teachers remember and recognize the faces of the students who sit in the front row. Now if you decided to talk and be a distraction this will not help you, but if you are attentive the professor will remember that about you and having a professor who likes you opens up so many doors from references to potential research positions.
Avoid seats on balconies – High up in the balcony it is easy to tune out your professor, forget you are in a classroom and talk to your friends. Professors do not appreciate that plus it is not a good way to learn.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions even though it’s big – Again the professors remember and recognize faces and if you are asking relevant questions that will appreciate that. Also because you are in a large classroom the odds are that someone else will have the same question.
Find a way that works for you to take notes – Some professors put their lectures online for students to print out, some only post skeleton lectures, and some just talk to you and expect you to listen and learn. Weather you work best typing notes on your computer, writing notes on paper or on printed notes from your professor; learn which way works best for you.
Arrive to class 10 minutes early – Arriving early guarantees you a good seat in the classroom as opposed to the seats in the back corners where learning is more challenging.
Always sit in the same spot for classes and tests – Studies have shown that students who stay in the same spot do better than the students who sit in different spots for tests and lectures. When you move, your body has to get used to a variety of new things that could distract you, but sitting in the same spot sets up your body to learn a specific kind of material and perform better on tests.
Student Coordinator, New Student Programs & Family Outreach
Moving into a college residence hall can be very difficult. The actual move in date is faced with many obstacles, such as how to carry you mini fridge up 4 flights of stairs, limited elevator space, tight corners, and fitting all of your stuff in your car! The last thing that you want to do after bringing all of your belongings to Corvallis is have to send some of it back home with your parents. While you may think that your coffee maker is essential to college life, University Housing and Dining Services (UHDS) does restrict certain items in the rooms. With that being said, I have created a master list of what items to avoid, as well as some things you should bring. This way you won’t have to blow all your “spending money” first week at Fred Meyer.
UHDS restricts a number of appliances due to health and safety concerns and facility capacity issues. These items may include gas powered appliances, large energy consumption items, and any other items that have a flame or open heat. But, no need to fret; there is at least one full kitchen in each hall as well as microwaves on every floor for your Easy Mac or microwave burritos.
Now that you have scratched half of the items off of your college checklist I will let you in on some good essentials to bring that you may not have thought of. These include:
- Cleaning materials (There is no room-service like a hotel)
- Bedding items – I suggest buying “twin XL” sheets because the beds are longer than the average twin mattress
- Bring a boom box or computer speakers so you can jam during your “study sesh”
- A bike, DON’T FORGET A LOCK! A U-Lock is the best kind to buy
- Ear plugs – because you have no idea if your roommate is a snorer
- Some snacks – so you don’t have to travel the long distance to the dining hall
- A TV, cable is free in all the rooms
- Office supplies – you will do a good amount of printing
- ALARM CLOCK – don’t rely on your phone because it can die
- Rug – most rooms are tile floors and rug is going to make it a lot more comfortable for you, and a bit more “homey”
- A Power strip – depending on how much computer supplies you have you might run out of room
Electric blanket – this can be essential on a cold night (Electric blankets may be allowed in Co-op houses but not in other OSU residence halls)
- Fan – believe it or not it can get hot in Oregon and the halls are not equipped with Air Conditioning
- Umbrella – It rains in Oregon…
Lastly, bring a friendly attitude. This list should reduce the stress of packing a little bit, and be a good checklist. Have a good move in day and welcome to OSU!
For a full list of suggested items, as well as what not to bring, check out UHDS’ website by following this link: http://oregonstate.edu/uhds/what-to-bring
Future students, it’s time to pick your on-campus room or co-op! Did you know:
- Students who live on campus their first year have a higher average GPA.
- On-campus first year student residents are more likely to return for their second year at OSU.
- Endless opportunities to meet new people and develop lasting friendships are available.
University Housing & Dining Services is hosting a live chat for anyone having questions during the process, with extended hours until 7 p.m. PST on May May 10, 14, 15, 18 and 25.