The winter semester is right around the corner and most of us are still in holiday mode. It's tough coming...

The winter semester is right around the corner and most of us are still in holiday mode. It's tough coming back to school after spending two weeks doing no school work and being at home. However, the new semester is a fresh start and a great place to start when starting academic resolutions for yourself. So whether the fall semester went exactly right for you, not quite as expected, or a complete flop, it is never a bad option to start off on the right foot in expectations that you keep up the good habits. Here are a few tips to start your semester successfully!

Hopefully some of these tips help you to prepare for the winter semester, good luck in the upcoming week of classes!

1. Make note of all dates on your syllabus.

Write them in a planner, a calendar, or even your phone; somewhere you will remember to look at on a regular basis so you know when you have an test or an assignment due. This can hopefully avoid any shock the night for the midterm you thought was the week later!

2. Actually attend the first class.

Sometimes it really sucks commuting to school for a three hour lecture and it ends up only lasting 20 minutes, but the first class is a great opportunity to get a feel for the material, the class itself, as well as your professor. 

3. Look into your textbooks.

Look at how much your textbooks are and how much they will be used. Sometimes professors based their entire lectures on the textbook readings so the important information from the textbook is already being brought up in lecture. So its best to hold off a week or two before investing in that $100 textbook. Also, be sure to see if it is at the library!

4. Check out your professor on Rate my Professor.

A bad professor can ruin the entire class for you. Look them up and see how other students described their teaching, grading, and assessment. Most students know what works for them and knowing what they will be getting themselves into with this professor. It also gives you an opportunity to hear about the class itself which is a bonus!

5. Actually set goals for yourself.

Yes, every semester you probably saying you're going to do all your readings, but slack off after a week. Try to make goals that can challenge you, but know are achievable. Look into things you may have struggled with in the past, like preparing for midterms or procrastinating on a big term paper, and evaluate ways to improve your weaknesses.