As many students discover, university studies are generally much more challenging than high school. If they weren’t so challenging, your degree wouldn’t be half as impressive as it is. Although some students are able to work through their degree without outside help, many of us need a little help at some point. Whether it’s academic advising, writing help or learning skills development, most students use some sort of academic support during their studies.
Academic advising is definitely the most well-used support on campus. Academic advising is available through your faculty, your college and through your program or department. Academic advisers can help you with course selection, navigating degree requirements or making important academic decisions, such as changing majors. Most of the time, you need to make an appointment before visiting your academic adviser but some also do drop-ins. It’s best to find this out well in advance so that you’re not stuck when you need some advice.
Personally, I made a point of getting to know my program coordinator. I try to visit her office at least once per semester just to make sure I’m taking the right courses and that I’m on track to graduate. She’s helped me choose courses and has even helped me get permission to get into restricted courses. Even if you don’t visit your faculty, college or program advising office as often as I do, keeping on good terms with them – and making sure they know who you are – can be a huge help if ever you run into any sort of problem.
York’s writing centres are also very popular with students. York provides students with three writing support centres on the Keele campus and one on the Glendon campus. These centres offer students one-on-one tutoring, group workshops and group editing sessions. The Liberal Arts & Professional Studies Writing Centre also offers e-tutoring online. While the writing centres will not write an essay for you, they will help you write a thesis, give you research tips and help you edit your paper once you’ve written it.
Learning Skills Services (LSS) also offer academic support for students looking for a little extra help. LSS’s most popular service is its workshop series. These workshops cover exam writing, study, presentation and note-taking skills as well as anxiety and time management, memory and critical thinking. Students are also able to participate in one-on-one skills development sessions. To enroll in these sessions, students must complete the skills assessment form then book an appointment in person in the LSS office in the Bennett Centre.
All of these services – and more – are also housed in the Learning Commons on the second floor of Keele’s Scott Library. The space offers modular seating and furniture to promote group-learning as well as a “hub” for academic services like the Writing Centre and LSS. The Commons has even earned several awards for its design.
Whatever academic challenges you might face, York is here to support you. For more information on the available academic supports on campus, visit the Future Students website.