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Student Success

What is the difference between a high school and college environment?

The college environment requires students to function independently, be self-directed, and be mature enough to handle adult subject matter and a diverse population. College students are expected to contribute to the learning environment and behave in a manner that will not disrupt instruction, the classroom, events, or other campus settings. The college workload averages two hours of homework for every hour of class time.

What does SVC do to help students adjust to the first week of classes?

We encourage all new students to attend the new student orientation that is held the day prior to the first day of the quarter. During this orientation the student will learn how to survive the first few weeks of the quarter. Faculty, staff and students will share about their experiences and expectations of the new student. The Fast Track program is an in-depth orientation program offered prior to fall quarter that earns the student two college credits.

What if my student is struggling academically? How can I help?

Students, particularly new students, can encounter academic difficulties. The adjustment to a college environment can be challenging for the high school graduate. If you find signs of declining interest in a subject or increased frustration you should refer your student to contact their advisor at the Counseling and Career Center. The Drop-in Tutoring Center is a great starting point for students to find assistant in individual subjects.

If my student is having problems with the teacher, how can I set up a teacher conference?

Trying to arrange teacher conferences or making personal phone calls to the instructor to discuss your student's performance is inappropriate at the college and university level. When the minor student is enrolled in a college class they are considered to be a responsible adult, as any other student. Students (regardless of age) are expected to take the initiative to address academic or personal problems that may interfere with their ability to succeed in a course. The college provides ombudspersons, advisors, and counselors to assist students in overcoming academic difficulties, up to and including a grievance process if students feel they have been treated unjustly. However, it is entirely inappropriate for parents to contact faculty or academic administrators about their child's performance - that is the responsibility the child assumes when registering for college level classes.

What if my child has math anxiety?

SVC instructors and staff are well aware that many students have fear and anxiety around taking math classes. There are several on-going sources of support for math anxious students. The College Success Skills I (CSS 100) class provides students with a comprehensive set of skills related to college success, which include strategies for general test anxiety and for math anxiety. The math department has created a Math Center in Ford Hall 212. The center is a place for students to study math where they will find other math students working, instructors who are able to answer questions and a variety of computer math resources. In addition, the Tutoring Center in Lewis Hall 20 offers several hours a day of drop-in math tutoring during the academic quarter. Students can get one-on-one help with questions in their current math classes. A student experiencing math anxiety can also meet with a counselor in the Counseling and Career Services area to talk about their concerns and fears. The counselors will help the student to identify strategies and can refer students to quarterly workshops related to math anxiety.

College Success Tools and Tips

  • Be Present in Class!
    Some classes do not take attendance, bit it is important to be present. The information you may miss will affect the success of your learning process.
  • Keep your Syllabus.
    Your syllabus is your contact with your instructor. It includes instructor contact information, required course texts, class objectives, assignment deadlines, and grade computation.
  • Be Prepared for the Class
    Have the necessary supplies and textbooks needed for the class, and also be prepared for engaging in class discussions.
  • Take class notes