Academic Support

Asking the Right Questions

Your college student may have been an outstanding scholar in high school, or she may have struggles throughout her academic career. Her patterns of being a student have been set for years. However, college provides a new academic start for students. Students who breezed through high school may find themselves challenged for the first time. Students who found themselves labeled as poor students may find that the fresh start gives them new energy and perspective on their studies.

Your student may reach a point where she worries about her grades, complains about the amount and difficulty of the work, is aggravated at the professor, and is generally discouraged. What is a parent to do?

First of all - listen! Let your student vent. Sometimes, that may be all that is necessary. But second, ask some questions to help your student try to figure out what he can do to make things better. Help him think about what action he can take.

Here are 12 questions that you might ask:

  1. Have you talked to the professor about the problem?
  2. How much time are you spending on your work outside of class?
  3. Where are you studying?
  4. When are you studying?
  5. How are you managing your time?
  6. How are you reading your material?
  7. Have you considered getting help?
  8. Have you considered forming a study group?
  9. How are you doing at taking class notes?
  10. Is there a specific stumbling block?
  11. What are your academic goals? Do you want to do better?
  12. What do you plan to do now?


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