How To Academically Succeed at UW-Madison

So you’ve made it this far: you got in to the prestigious University of Wisconsin-Madison. You may think if you’re smart enough to get in, you’re smart enough to succeed. Unfortunately for many, that is just not the case. College is a completely new playing field than high school was. You will work harder than you’ve ever worked–but I promise it’ll be worth it. In order to succeed, follow these tips.

  1. Make friends in classes
    • Sometimes lecture material will be confusing for you. Sometimes you won’t understand your homework, or you forget what day an assignment is due. Having classmates you can rely on to bounce ideas off of, ask last minute questions to, or study with will relieve some of the stress of feeling swallowed up by a big lecture.
  2. Take advantage of all available resources
    • This is one that took me a while to understand. A perk of attending such a large university is that we have endless resources. Librarians want to help you with your research project, TA’s want to help you succeed. It’s okay to seek help–use these resources to improve your knowledge.
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  3. When you need a break, take a break
    • The day before a big test, I always felt like I couldn’t let myself leave the library because I wasn’t prepared enough. Spending 10 hours straight at the library will be much less effective than if you allow yourself to take a break after a few hours of studying. Don’t drive yourself crazy. You can tell when you need a break–listen to your body and take it.
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Yes, you were smart enough to get into UW-Madison. Now it’s time to be smart enough to learn new techniques that will help you succeed!

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