Deciding to go back to school after you have been out for a while can be very exciting and scary – all at the same time. I received my Bachelor’s degree at 40, and it was hard. However, I learned some things in the process that can help others who are making the jump.
Slow and Steady Wins the Race
I am one that jumps into what I am doing, whether it is going back to school, starting a new job, or going on a diet. I am all in at first and think I am a superhero that can do it all. When registering, I signed up for the maximum number of hours, even though I was a mom to 3 and worked full time. I made it through that semester, but I didn’t make it without many tears, missed time with my family, and prayers. After that semester, I slowed my class level down for my sanity.
Give Yourself a Break
The Type A in me wanted all A’s, and I would not accept less – even if it killed me. You know what? I could make C’s in every single class and would still have received my degree. Also, surprisingly, I have never been asked what my GPA was. If you bomb a test or assignment, give yourself a break. Evaluate why you didn’t get the grade you wanted and make changes from there. Most of the time, one bad grade does not mean failing a class.
Get to Know People
Connection is something that I didn’t think I needed when I returned to college. Knowing and connecting with others, whether or not they are near your age, can have a significant benefit in learning. Not only do you have someone that you can get with if you miss a class and need the notes, but you also have study partners when you are getting ready for a test, etc.
Sit in the Front of the Class
I know, it goes against all your high school tendencies, but it can make a difference. It is incredible how distracted you can get if you sit in the back of the class. Every noise, every action, and every little thing can be a source of distraction. By sitting in the front, you can tune most of it out and focus on what you are there for – learning.
Most adults feel as if they ask questions, they are the only ones who didn’t understand or get what has been said/taught. This is not the case. Chances are if you have a question, someone else has the same issue as well and may not speak up.
Talk to Your Professor/Teacher
If you are having problems understanding the material or how to do assignments, don’t just give up. Contact the professor and see if they will meet with you. I found that they were usually very willing to take time to help me, and it helped them to see how serious I was about school.
No matter what your age, it is almost certain that you will come into contact with other students who are your age or even older. Don’t let your age keep you from achieving your education goals. By following these tips, you can make going back to school one of the best things you ever did for yourself.
By: Janis Rodgers