When I was in high school, I never used a syllabus. I would always just pretend to read it and never actually pay attention to what was actually being discussed on the page. In high school that never really was a problem, I was just like everyone else. If a teacher wanted something done he or she would remind us four or five times at least. While this was convenient to myself and all those slackers around me, who never really bothered to read the thing, it kind of set me in a bad path for when I got to college.

When I got to college it was drilled into me pretty quickly that if I didn’t read the syllabus I’d be dead in the water. I didn’t know how right that information actually was, until I showed up to one of my classes and we immediately had a quiz on reading that was only posted on the syllabus. I quickly realized how important it was to always read the syllabus. As I began reading the syllabi for all my classes I began realizing these weren’t at all like the dinky little one sheets given out in high school. No. These were more like five to ten pages of vital information that needed to be made easily accessible as soon as possible. I began looking back at some of my older syllabi and I saw the dramatic differences and some of the similarities. High school syllabi are not at all as in depth as the ones you’ll get in college they won’t have the grading scale that that the professor uses and generally won’t have all the reading that you’ll be doing, with the exception of an AP or advanced studies programs. College syllabi will typically talk about the teachers expectations, as well as what you will generally be learning about with the readings, the dates of most if not all quizzes and tests. College syllabi will also have the assignments for that class and depending on the professor they will have places to check out for extra help or places to cite information for their particular school (MLA, APA or whatever the professor prefers). These are incredibly helpful and are always a great tool that you should definitely utilize, because usually if a professor is going to take the time to put something in their syllabus it will be expected that you use it. Reading only a little bit of the syllabus is like watching the movie to a story your supposed to be writing a book report on, you get some of the details, but it is lacking a significant part.  Your professor is here for you if you have any questions about what they have in their syllabus, they want to help you through the transition of becoming a Longwood student.

What you’ll learn is that when it comes to prepping for college it is always best to read the whole syllabi, and if you’re anything like me, you probably won’t want to but it really is for the best. It really helps to have a good strong start and you honestly cannot beat knowing what is going on in the class and what you will need.

If you decide to take my advice you will probably have a great start in college, but either way I wish you all the best and hope you excel here at this wonderful University.