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Archive for the ‘Student Lounge’ Category

The saddest thing about high school education is that teachers spend so much time prepping students for standardized testing that they fail to actually teach and inspire students. In my honors English class, we watched the movies instead of reading the books. Doing this left us more time to prep for standardized testing. Although there is no rigorous monkey see, monkey do of standardized test prep in college, there is still a lack of substance in classrooms.

I’ve noticed that I’ve become less concerned about the content in my class, worrying instead about the amount of tests and homework assignments.

I need to make an A.

What can I do to make an A?

I will spend hours spitting words onto a paper analyzing a book or a dissertation, but don’t have any time to actually read the book or the dissertation. On tests, I’m only regurgitating the words of noble professors instead of applying thought of my understanding of the answers on my exam.

Many professors are stuck in this hamster wheel as well. They, too, are forced to adhere to regulations of an academic course.

What is a proper classroom? How can we make them all the same?  What does a “good” student look like?

In the end, most classes are just addresses in collegiate suburbia with well- watered lawns and white, picket fences. God forbid a student walks down the street in anything less than a beehive hairdo and an argyle sweater. In other words, the degree at which a student can work hard to fake it determines whether they pass or fail.

Of course, there needs to be structure. There needs to be a line drawn. In all my ranting, I’ve failed to express appreciation for the thought- provoking classes I’ve been fortunate enough to attend. However, in all of our efforts to improve education, we’ve dumbed down our generation. Not all students learn the same or look the same. Sadly, most of them won’t realize their potential for higher education, because their scores on a test said they were too dumb.

Seeing education in this light, does this mean we’re sending robots into the work force who haven’t a clue how to solve real problems?

Or, is life just one big fake it until you make it?

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Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match! Find me a find! Catch me a catch!

Ya, okay, you get the point.

Social networks are taking over, and I love the sweet poison of dictatorship! What’s even better is that with the development of these technologies, we have more control and more options. To condense our lives from the clutter of different sites, we can marry all our networks together. This is beneficial if you do PR or if you simply have important issues to blog about, and you want people to read your posts more often.

I married my Twitter to my blog by allowing tweets to surface on my homepage as I tweet them. In turn, I also provide links to my blog posts to direct my followers to my blog. It’s all so effortless!

Step One: Put a quick tagline next to the link in Twitter before you tweet it. This lets your users know that it’s not spam. If your tagline is catchy enough or interesting enough, then followers will check it out. Try using the rules of a newsworthy story (Journalism) to ensure a great tagline (or even great blog posts).

Step Two: Amateurs, don’t post the entire link. Don’t you know Twitter only has 140 characters? Don’t waste space! That’s what your blog is for, right? Use a site like bit.ly to shorten your URL.

Step Three: Proofread. There’s nothing worse than a professional who loses all credibility with errors. They happen to everyone, so don’t think you’re imune. Proofread both your blog posts and tweets.

Step Four: Follow step one and step two frequently. The more you blog and tweet, the more likely people are going to check you out.

So, go ahead and marry your social networks already. They could use the tax break. ;]

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Students come in all shapes and sizes. We’re overachievers and we’re slackers. We suck up to the teacher and we don’t show up to class. Either way, social media caffeinates our generation like nothing else, so whether you’re the A student of the C student there’s reason to blog for your future.

1. Gives You an Online Presence

Start a blog now. Perfect it, edit it, update it, and viola! You’ll start to have a house in the suburbs of the world wide web and make your mark in search engines. Start ahead of time, so that even the slacker will have time to make changes before it’s professional enough to put on a resume.

2. Green Journal-ist

Be part of the paperless brigade and make a private blog about your life to share with your friends and family. This is great practice for more topical blogs you may write in the future. However, your personal blog should still be appropriate and professional enough to be seen by the general public. Evidence of wild nights and drunk fests need not apply! *cough* Slacker *cough*

3. Free PR

Just because you’re a student doesn’t mean you’re not also a team leader of a club, sports team, or non-profit. If you run a group that needs to get the word out, make a blog and direct people toward it! It’s a creative, interactive way to make a newsletter for your public. Graphics and layouts can create an instant personality for your group while providing details that you want to share.

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