Porterville College

Student Handbook

Keys to Success

Keys to success at Porterville College

Once you have become a student at Porterville College, there are certain things you can do to ensure your success (the following are modeled after the suggestions in the book, Your College Experience):

  • Learn what helping resources Porterville College offers and where they are located. Porterville College has a variety of academic and personal support services that are free and confidential. Successful students use these.
  • Set up a “daily schedule” and stick to it. - Get a daily or weekly calendar from the bookstore and start assigning sufficient time for study, work, sleep, and recreation. If you have family or work obligations, find ways to balance them with academic demands. A counselor can help you do this.
  • If you are a full-time student, try not work more than 20 hours per week. - Many students begin a downhill slide beyond 20 hours. If you need more money, talk to a financial aid officer.
  • Assess and improve your study habits. - Find out about your own learning style. This will help you learn how to take better notes in class, read more efficiently, and do better on tests. Take Education P101 or P076 to learn more about studying
  • Join at least one study group. - Studies have shown that students who study in groups often get higher grades. Ask your fellow students or instructor about forming groups.
  • See your instructor outside of class. - It’s okay to ask for help. Make an appointment to visit with your instructor about class projects, ideas for term papers, career plans or other ambitions.
  • Develop critical thinking skills. - Challenge. Ask why. Look for unusual solutions to ordinary problems and ordinary solutions to unusual problems.
  • Know how to use the library. - The library isn’t as formidable as it might seem, and it offers a wealth of resources. Ask the library staff for help in finding material.
  • Improve your writing. - The ability to write is important to your success in college. Also, employers want graduates who can write. Write every day - the more you write, the better you will write.
  • Visit the Transfer Center early in your first term. - See the career counselor before you get too far along in college, even if you have chosen your academic major. Make sure you know the transfer requirements so that you can develop an educational study plan to guide your registration throughout your years at Porterville College.
  • Get involved in campus activities. - Join a club or support group. All campus organizations welcome new students. Research shows that students who are more connected to their campus are more likely to succeed. Get involved.
  • Take your health seriously. - How much sleep you get, what you eat, whether you exercise, and what decisions you make about drugs, alcohol, and sex can contribute to your well-being. Be good to yourself and you’ll be happier and more successful.
  • Show up for class. - When asked what they would do differently if they could do it all over again, most seniors say, “go to class.” Instructors tend to test on what they discuss in class, as well as grade in part on the basis of class participation. Be there.
  • Understand why you are in college. - Identify specific goals you want to achieve. Are you here “because it’s the thing to do” or is this the first step toward a specific goal? Having a goal to work toward will help you succeed in the classes you are taking.
  • Set a regular time to study. - Plan your study time and stick to it.
  • Allow enough time for each assignment. - Start with the toughest or least favorite task and take a short break now and then. Keep up with your assignments.
  • Review often. - Reviewing often places information in long term memory. This is critical for tests that are comprehensive. Information not reviewed is information forgotten.
  • Have a regular and quiet place to study. - No distractions. Don’t be too comfortable.
  • Prepare early for examinations. - Begin studying the first day of school. Study daily and don’t cram. Do a little bit everyday rather than a lot on one day.
  • Be a good time manager. Get into the habit of writing things down. Buy a calendar - record deadlines, dates. Get organized and plan a schedule that gives you enough time for all activities.


February 17, 2015
Kern Community College District