Jul 25 2017
A lot of students worry about how they should prepare for college. But, excelling as students is now easier with technology. Technology provides information at a fast pace. Without the proper knowledge on how to adapt with a high-tech environment, unprepared students are bound to suffer. Thankfully, there are a lot of ways that students can touch up and prepare for what should be the skills that they need to improve.
Students need to know how to improve their tech skills to be successful in their academics. Here are some of the skills that can help:
- Knowledge on documentation software: Students need to know how to use various documentation software suites. These include, but are not limited to: word processing programs, spreadsheet programs and presentation programs.
Microsoft Word is the most common word processing program available that helps in creating documents. Students will be using this for submitting papers and assignments. For spreadsheet programs, Microsoft Excel can be used to help in checking and reviewing basic calculations. Presentation of reports is also a very common activity in college that uses a presentation program like Microsoft PowerPoint.
Mastery of using these programs would also help you familiarize with other suites that offer the same functions as well, such as Google Drive, OpenOffice or LibreOffice.
- Online research skills: Finding the right way to research is important. Research papers are common in college. Without the knowledge on how to research, students will have a hard time. They need to know how to correctly make use of search engines and references that they can use as basis and support for their research papers.
A lot of scholarly databases are setup online which provide credible articles that students can use as reference. Usage of correct search terms also matters. Staying away from broad search terms such as “economy” will provide broader results than entering “US economy in the 90s”. Students should also consider that domain names matter in how they reference their work. Referencing domains that end in .gov, .org and .edu domains assure that articles from these sites will be credible. Aside from these, students should also learn how to properly reference where they get their sources from to not be accused of plagiarism which is a grave offense in most colleges.
- Online privacy essentials: Being conscious of online presence and privacy is important. Students need to know that all their actions can be tracked online if they do not know how to appreciate privacy. Social media outfits sometimes share private information to the public and they need to steer clear of these. Moreover, having strong passwords for all online accounts guarantees lesser chances of being hacked and having important personal information stolen.
- Typing abilities: Since most tasks need typing, it is important to be fast and accurate. Students need to learn how to swiftly type emails and documents by practicing daily on the keyboard. They could also learn this by going on typing programs that help in practicing typing efficiency. Learning the common keyboard shortcuts and hotkeys are important as well to cut time in typing research papers and other assignments.
- Etiquette skills: Correct communication is important in the online world. There are a lot of communication channels that students can be immersed in. Whether typing emails to professors or superiors, students need to know the proper way to compose emails appropriate to the person they are contacting. Having email etiquette ensures that students practice professionalism as early as college. It pays to know how to address the person the email is sent to. To address your professors, it is not a good idea to preface your email with the common greeting “Hello there”, but rather, use formal opening greetings such as “Dear Atty. X” or “Sir/Madam”. There are also forums and online media that students randomly join. Even if these channels provide a sense of anonymity, it is still important to practice correct discretion when communicating with others. For social media, while it is greatly tempting to post everything, great care should be employed to ensure that what students share cannot affect their reputation. All things posted online will soon find their way to the public. Curating your social presence would also be a great help in the future. When college students graduate and look for jobs, the first thing that some companies do is to look for their social media profiles. A professional and well-meaning social media profile would translate well on how they are as a person, and would greatly increase the chances of getting hired.