Transforming Academic Divers into Academic Strivers: Building Academic Endurance

Going to college is no trivial matter, but succeeding in college is an entirely different challenge. Why does college make some students but break others? This article shares an effective strategy you can use to transform students’ struggles into successes. When students begin college, they automatically try to use the skills that got them into college to get them through …

Academic Divers, Strivers and Thrivers: Metacognitive Learner Profiles

Click image to enlarge. In the current environment of hyper-segmentation, it can seem impossible for instructors and learning center professionals to know what college students need to succeed. We seem infatuated with sub-dividing students into increasingly smaller and smaller cohorts. This myopic perspective blinds us from seeing the commonalities among students, and prevents us from finding solutions that stretch across …

3 Essential Learning Skills that Guarantee Academic and Career Success

Have you ever wondered which learning skills are indispensable for student success? I guess our answer to this question hinges upon how we define student success. When I think of student success, I imagine students whose skills cut across academic disciplines. To me, successful students don’t just pass tests; they absorb the essence of a course. Yes, they know their …

How to Eliminate Academic-Related Retention Problems: Introducing the AP3

In the early 1900s, Frank and Lillian Gilbreth carefully observed thousands of bricklayers at work. The Gilbreths saw that each craftsman had developed his own peculiar way of operating. They noticed that the bricklayers did not always use the same motion as they positioned one brick after another. The Gilbreths quickly recognized that bricklaying was fraught with inefficient movements, and …

Help Students Avoid the Failure-Frustration Cycle

In this post, you will benefit from: Have you ever felt trapped in a relationship with someone you didn’t want to offend and used the “It’s not you; it’s me” line to break up with the person in the nicest way possible? It’s so effective, isn’t it? It allows us to reject people while completely disarming them at the same …

The Big Squeeze: How Transition Traps Crush Students and Depress Retention Numbers

It’s Wednesday, September 19, 2018.  New college students are huddled around a large kidney-shaped table in the campus’s main library. This outwardly motley crew met during orientation at a special ceremony for incoming students who received large academic scholarships. It was one of those hand-shaking events where they heard stories about the persons behind their respective endowments. They’ve been in …

The College Trap: Introducing The Six Transition Traps That Destroy Learners

If colleges and universities want to retain larger shares of their students and desire that they excel in school and become equipped with lifelong learning skills, then we must help them avoid or, if necessary, escape transition traps. Transitions are make-or-break moments. A smooth transition builds self-confidence, but a troublesome one can debilitate even the most capable among us. Avoiding …

How to Nudge Students Toward Academic Success

Educators’ and parents’ struggles to get students to make better decisions often leads them to adopt counterproductive methods that wind up damaging relationships. This article blends research and practice to provide a more effective way for improving student success. Why shove when you can nudge? In September 2006, the City of Chicago tried a novel approach to solve a long-standing …

The Impact of Integrative Thinking: Providing Superior Solutions to Complex Problems

Every institution has the capacity to solve its problems, whatever they may be. This statement may seem unimaginable, considering the magnitude of some school’s challenges. The truth is, I’ve reached this conclusion after witnessing school after school successfully overcome a variety of trials. They scored their successes by adhering to research-based methods and means that I developed to help institutions …