Success in College Math

12 Tips for Success in College Math
Math Center Help
Math Placement Exam
Help Videos

12 Tips for Success in College Math

1. A solution manual (or other help source) can be a crutch. Students must address this weakness. A person cannot learn to play the piano by watching! If you find you needed help to solve a problem, mark the problem and return to it in a day or two. See if you can now work the problem on your own. If you find you need help again, get the help. However, mark the problem and return to it again. Continue this until you have mastered the concept.

2. Attendance records indicate that students who miss class generally receive lower grades. ATTEND CLASS!

3. Take detailed class notes, especially if feeling lost during lecture(or downloaded if you instructor has them on the web). Review the notes after class (before the next class period) to be sure you are ready for any new material. If there are questions on the material covered in class, get help  on understanding what was covered.

4. Read and re-read notes. Think about what each example is asking in terms of the concepts presented and why it is solved in a particular way. Instructors tend to ask exam questions that will cover the same concept in a different way. Therefore, it is important to understand what is behind the question.

5. For every hour spent in class, 3 hours outside class should be spent working problems and studying. 

6. Practice positive self-talk about math ~ a positive attitude about the subject helps studying which helps grades.

7. Outside help is available through help sessions, weekly reviews and appointments with professors. We encourage you to use these resources!

8. If at all possible, do not get behind! Today's class lecture will likely build on the previous lecture. Even if you miss class you should try to look at the material that was covered during the class you missed.

9. A point is a point. Students often take homework and quiz points less seriously than exam points. Often homework and quiz points can make a difference (for better or for worse) in your final grade.

10. Test taking is a skill. Look through your entire exam and work the questions you think are the easiest first. Then go back and work the more difficult ones and skip those that you cannot do. This should help you to not run out of time before you have had a chance to look at all the problems.

11. Wishing that a bad test will go away doesn't work. If you do badly on an exam you should not throw it away (tempting as that may be). You should rework the exam and then go to your instructor's office and discuss the test and what went wrong. Simply hoping that the next test will be better is rarely effective.

12. Do not pin your hopes on the final. Miracles rarely happen on the final. Be sure your grade going into the final is strong enough to withstand a lower than usual performance. However, occasionally a student studies hard enough for the final that it does work to raise their grade.

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Math Center Help

The Mathematics Tutoring Center provides free assistance for students enrolled in University mathematics courses. Faculty and staff are also invited to visit the Center for help. The Center is equipped with 8 computers that can be used for ALEKS and other web-based math assignments. An appointment is not necessary. For more information and the most current schedule, call the Math Department at 269-471-3424.

           Location:     Haughey Hall (Science Complex), Room 112, 269-471-6662
        Fall and Spring hours:    
                         Sunday, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.
                         Monday-Thursday, 4 p.m.–8 p.m.
                         Closed during the summer and holidays.

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Math Placement Exam

The Math Placement Exam is designed to maximize student success in beginning mathematics courses, by placing the student in a course at an appropriate level.
Additional information on MPE details and how to schedule a Math Placement Exam, please visit the website for the  Department of Mathematics

MPE Self-Test:     PDF sample
Prep for Exam:    MPE Prep-info

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Help Videos

Videos can be a great way of learning material. When it comes to Math it is very helpful to SEE the material taught. Below are links to a large library of videos to help with several options of math problems:

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