"Living Out an American Dream or How to Succeed in College in the U.S."
Tips from Elena Ivanova, a super successful international student at Hofstra – who is now pursuing her Masters in Marketing!
The classes in the University are structured in a way that may be very different from what you are used to. You will be given a syllabus – a written formal outline of the course that includes the schedule of classes, test dates, and deadlines for assignments. Make sure you come back to look at your syllabus at least once a week, this way you won’t find out about a ten-page paper the day before it’s due.
“Good artists borrow. Great artists steal,” said Pablo Picasso. But if he was a student at Hofstra, he would get in a big trouble with this mentality. Plagiarism is an important issue for students of all educational levels. Make sure you give credit to each and every single one of your sources. There are many resources online as well as at the University. For example – the Writing Center!
You will notice that professors ask you to write papers in a particular formats such as, for example, MLA or APA. While it doesn’t seem like a big deal, not following the required style can negatively affect your grade and accidently get you involved in plagiarism. Make sure you go through a manual on how to cite and edit your written assignments in a required format. There are plenty of resources online, but you want to stick with trusted, up-to-date, education-based portals, such as Purdue Owl. (http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/)
Sooner or later, you will have to take a potentially-scary class called Public Speaking. But don’t worry, we have plenty of Public Speaking tips on our website along with workshops that will help you to feel comfortable in front of your audience. Public Speaking may have a horrifying reputation among students, but it is your chance to express your inner superstar.
It is easy to get great grades in America. Just kidding, it is not. But you have to know that there is a massive amount of University resources that are created just for one purpose: to make your life easier. As a student, you have access to a huge library along with amazing research databases that will help you to find material about whatever you need.