Tips for Success
The Los Angeles City College Department of Mathematics wants every student in each math class to have the maximum opportunity for success. Although we cannot guarantee this success, it has been our experience that students have a greater likelihood for improved class performance when they follow these guidelines:
- GET IN THE RIGHT MATH CLASS AT THE START.
If you are new to the college, you are advised to meet with LACC academic counselor.
- REGISTER EARLY.
Math classes, particularly at the lower levels, close early in the registration period. While trying to enroll in the college, you don't need the added stress of attempting to get into a closed class.
- BUY THE TEXTBOOK EARLY.
Check with the bookstore to see that you are buying the correct edition. The bookstore is usually very busy in the first couple of weeks of a semester. So you are adviced to buy your textbooks as early as possible.
- ATTEND ALL CLASS MEETINGS FOR THE ENTIRE PERIOD.
If you miss class, you may miss important information. Don't arrive late or leave early because it is distracting to the professor and to your students to have people coming and going while instruction is taking place. Students who violate the College's attendance regulations are subject to exclusion from class.
- MATH CLASSES REQUIRE CONSISTENT WORK EVERY DAY
You should plan to spend at least two hours outside of school for every class hour working on math. At almost every class meeting, your professor will be assigning homework which should be completed by the next meeting. Because each new topic may use material from a previous topic, it is essential that you not get behind in your work. Don't expect to study for a test by "cramming" the night before the test.
- BE ALERT IN CLASS
Take notes but not in such detail that you miss what is going on. Any material written on the board is important enough to be included in your notes. Ask questions in class if you don't understand a point. Other students might have the same question, but are afraid to ask. You are entitled to ask questions about the subject matter as long as you do not monopolize the class time. If your question isn't satisfactorily answered in class, see your professor during his/her scheduled office hour or at some other mutually convenient time. Also, you can get help in the Pi Shop (FH 104).
Before starting your homework, review your notes, fill in any gaps in them, and make needed corrections. Then read the pertinent portion of the text and study the illustrative worked-out examples. Try to identify the significant theory that is being introduced. Now you are ready to begin your homework.
- STUDYING WITH OTHERS
Studying with others outside of class is a good idea. Not only can you clear up difficulties by learning from others, but you also strengthen your own knowledge when you explain something to someone else.
- DON'T BE DISCOURAGED
Don't be discouraged if you don't immediately understand a new topic. Other students and your professor have had the same experience while learning math. Be persistent. You may have to reread your notes and the test or seek help from others to clear up difficulties.
- HAVE YOUR LIFE IN ORDER
Maintain your personal relations, employment, and other outside activities in such a way that they don't interfere with your math studies. Get enough sleep at home so that you come to class refreshed and alert. Be sure you have dependable transportation to the College.