You’re probably overhearing about how all students are different by now – we study differently, we join different cliques (oh yeah, cliques still exists in college), we party in new and confusing ways…but what if there were some science behind the way we students diverge?
Although as a student you’re probably completely overhearing what studies show, but this one might actually speak to you. A recent study from the American Institute of Research revealed that many students who drop out of a regular college are not doing so because college is wrong for them overall – it’s because they might well have been suited to a different kind of college, namely a community one. Despite the stick community colleges get (even from that entire TV show about one), the study seems to point to the fact that those who choose to go to a community college outright might well have a better grasp on what they’re doing with their lives as they might be more likely to graduate that way.
We Go to College for Different Reasons
Of course we do. This is almost a given, isn’t it? But the same study as before showed that some students choose to go to college purely because they see it as a pipeline to a future career, without considering the implications it might have on their life if this doesn’t turn out to be the case. An article discussing the study criticised the “unidirectional” way we treat college students (basically, treating college as a one-way, non-stop trip to career paradise), pointing out that most students will change direction at least once during their college career. Whether it’s to change degrees, retake semesters, switch universities, or drop out all together is another matter – but the fact is everyone’s college journey is a little bit different, and failing to acknowledge that does students no good.
We Learn Differently
Given that pretty much every site on the internet has a “different types of student” list buried guiltily somewhere in their old pages, the different types of student joke is one that’s pretty much overstayed it’s welcome by now. But there’s a reason for this, and it boils down to the fact that most students have a completely unique way of studying.
Some of us will banally mind-map everything and stick it all over our house (guilty as charged), while others will flick through textbooks over and over again until something actually sticks in their head. Whatever your method (provided you’ve got one at all), if it works for you, that’s just dandy. But often discrepancies in the way the students learn are ignored by teachers, with many prescribing certain ways of learning things and pushing their own specific notes on their classes. Try to take in the important stuff and make it stay in your head in a way that works for you – and try not to get put off by the overachiever scribbling down every single thing the lecturer’s saying.