Subject: Back in college after 28 years; struggling with physics
I found your website for study skills advice. I am 47 and was diagnosed with mild ADHD-Inattentive at 32. I had pretty good coping skills in place for most of the areas in my life. But...now I am back in college. I am organized and have no problems there. I am taking an Intro to Physics class (as well as two other classes. they are no problem because I can use my notes and books for quizzes and tests). I studied off and on for 7 hours for this test. I had index cards for the terms and formulas and even recorded the info on my mp3 player to listen to. I even spent 3 1/2 hours on the phone with another classmater going over all the problems for the 4 chapters for this test. Well...I got a 60 (D). When I sat down to take the test, I forgot half the formulas. They wouldn't come back to my memory at all. It was very frustrating and reminded me of the classes I took in high school 30 years ago when I had the same struggles (word problems, formulas, logic). What advice can you give me to help me with this? I am going back to college to get a K-12 Special Ed degree so I can definitely relate to the kids. I am also a special ed education assistant at a middle school. Thanks for any help!!! :)
I took an intro Biology course last semester, so I know how you feel. The Department Of Education suggests that you spend 2 hours studying for every credit hour that you're taking, so a 4 credit physics course would be 8 hours a week. My Bio professor said that we should have 40 hours of study time in before every test that we had. Yes, that's right, 40 hours!
I made notecards for the study guide that he gave to us, got tutored for 2 hours a week and ended up with a B. I would suggest requesting tutoring services through Student Support Services (assuming that your college has them), and put more study time into the class since you're having trouble (as did I), and ask for help from your professor as much as possible.
Do you have to take Physics? I know most students take Bio over a "hard science" like Physics because they find it to be easier. Physics requires a lot of memorization of forumlas, which I'm terrible at!
So in conclusion, 7 hours of 'off and on' study time probably isn't adequate for a course that demands more attention like Physics. I had to study my ass off for a B. Good luck with your classes, what you're doing is very inspiring!