Skip over navigation

Academic Strategies Workshop Series

Fall 2014

The McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning is offering a series of hands-on, active, and process-focused workshops in which students learn and apply strategies designed expressly for the highly demanding Princeton University context. Led by McGraw's Associate Director, Nic Voge, the emphasis is on advanced and innovative techniques for purposeful and efficient learning. Students apply the strategies to their own course materials whenever possible during the workshops and, ideally, make a one-to-one follow-up appointment in The McGraw Center which builds upon what they learned in the workshop.

The strategies introduced emerge from a common core of research-based learning principles and comprise an integrated strategic approach. While each workshop can stand alone, the series is designed to build on itself and thus reinforce the core principles, and yet is sequenced to be responsive to the current demands of the semester (e.g. midterms).

Previous Fall 2014 Workshops

Effective Mid-Term Exam Preparation Strategies

In this McGraw workshop learn proven methods for…

  • Anticipating and preparing for the kind of problems and questions you will be expected to answer on exams.
  • Selecting and prioritizing the most important information in your courses.
  • Synthesizing and reducing large amounts of information from multiple sources into manageable formats.
  • Organizing your knowledge in ways that promote deep learning, retention, and efficient recall.

This is an active hands-on workshop in which you will work on materials from YOUR own current courses. So, bring a syllabus or two and any other information from your courses such as previous exams (check Blackboard) that might be useful in preparing for midterms.


Post Mid-Term Reflections: (Re)Planning for Academic Success

Many students find the transition from high school to college examination styles to be challenging, and it is usually around midterm time that this realization sets in. Turn the "shock" of midterms into a successful learning experience by reflecting, evaluating, and strategizing for the future. Join us for this Midterms Reflection Workshop. 

Together we will:

  • Reflect on the midterm experience: what you learned, how you felt, what you would like to work on.
  • Discuss ways to adjust your mindset from the post-exam "blues" and regain your confidence.
  • Learn how to evaluate your test results in a practical and constructive manner for future success.
  • Develop strategies for academic success in the remainder of the semester.

Making the Most of of Reading Week: Planning for Dean's Date and Finals

Organizing Your Semester for Balance and Success

Map out your semester from the very start!

Organizing Your Semester for Balance and Success
Map out your semester from the very start!

Balance academics with everything else Princeton has to offer. Learn about the biggest organizational and time management challenges from Princeton upperclassmen—so you can overcome them. Try out proven practical techniques and tools. Find out about fundamental principles of time management and self-management that allow you to adapt to new, unexpected situations. Prevent procrastination before it prevents you from getting things done!

Bring to the workshop the syllabi from each of your courses and leave with a useful toolkit for:

   •Efficiently schedule your whole semester
   •Manage time on a daily and weekly basis
   •Getting more out of your study time
   •Using to-do lists more effectively

This is an active, hands-on workshop in which you will apply strategies to YOUR own courses. Individualized follow-up appointments with staff in the McGraw Center in Frist can be arranged.
Friday, Sept. 12, 1:30-3:00 p.m., 330 Frist Campus Center
Wednesday, Sept. 17, 8:00-9:30 p.m., Frist Multipurpose Room B
Friday, Sept. 19, 1:30-3:00 p.m., 330 Frist


Efficient Learning Strategies: Managing Large Amounts of Information

Got a huge reading load?

Want to learn some methods for managing the large amounts of information assigned in your courses?

Learn how to "blueprint" your courses so that you can read, take lecture notes, and study more purposefully and efficiently.

The Blueprinting Approach--a set of researched-based strategies--is expressly designed for reading-intensive Princeton courses, but can be adapted to any course.

Bring a course syllabus to apply this innovative method to one of your own courses during this hands-on, practical workshop.
Wednesday, Sept. 24, 8:00-9:30 p.m., Frist Multipurpose Room C
Friday, Sept. 26, 1:30-3:00 p.m., 330 Frist


Advanced Reading and Learning from Text Strategies

Learn How to Maximize Your Reading Efficiency

To achieve academic success at Princeton it is crucial for students to develop superior strategies for reading and learning from text. In this workshop you will learn: 

•an approach that helps you align your learning strategies to instructor objectives
•techniques for reading various kinds of academic texts
•strategies for enhancing retention and recall
•methods for reading faster and more efficiently

This is an active, hands-on workshop in which you will learn specific strategies by applying them. 
Wednesday, Oct. 1, 8:00-9:30 p.m., Frist Multipurpose Room C
Friday, Oct. 3, 1:30-3:00 p.m., 330 Frist


Going Forward From Midterms

In this interactive workshop led by McGraw Undergraduate Learning Consultants, you will use the feedback gained from your midterms to develop more effective approaches to learning for the rest of the semester. You will take away

  • A concrete action plan for your courses
  • A process for using exams to adjust your studying
  • A better understanding the kinds of studying required in Princeton courses

Thursday, Nov. 13, 5:00-6:00, 329 Frist


Understanding and Ovecoming Procrastination

Is procrastination an obstacle to maintaining balance and achieving academic success?

If so, you are not alone.  Up to 80% of college students report that procrastination has been a significant issue. Procrastination is not a matter of mere “laziness” and the solution is not simply “better time management”. In order to overcome procrastination it is vital that you understand its root causes and motivational dynamics. It is also vital to learn an array of (sometimes counter-intuitive) strategies and techniques for dealing with it.

In this workshop you will:

  • Gain a deeper awareness of what procrastination is and why people do it
  • Understand the motivational dynamics and mind games that perpetuate procrastination
  • Learn a variety of techniques for managing procrastination

All participants can arrange individualized follow-up appointments.
Sunday, Nov, 16, 4:00-5:30 p.m., 330 Frist


Working Effectively with Mentors in the Laboratory

Are you conducting research in a lab with a (graduate student) mentor? 
  • ·      Want to help improve your productivity and have a positive experience?
  • ·      Want some advice on how to develop your mentor relationship?
In this workshop we’ll discuss ways to make the most of the training and mentorship your lab provides. We’ll troubleshoot common situations that arise in undergraduate research and equip you to avert confusion and inefficiency by clarifying mentor and mentee roles and responsibilities. You’ll take away a useful framework for starting a conversation and developing a productive relationship with your mentors. 
Tuesday, Nov. 20, 3:00-4:00 p.m.l 330 Frist

Upcoming Workshops