Already Overwhelmed! [Ask The OREO]

Dear Oreo,

It’s only the second week of classes and I’m feeling overwhelmed. I’m so busy, I barely have time to do anything but study. I’m doing all of the reading and going to class, but I still feel like I don’t know what is going on in some of my classes. How do I know what’s important and what’s not? The professor isn’t lecturing on the assigned reading. I have a quiz next week, I don’t know what to do!



Dear Whelmed,

First, if you’re doing all of the reading and going to class, you’ve got a good start. Figuring out how everything fits together – the lecture, lab, readings, etc. – can be more complicated.

Your best bet is to go talk to your professor. Every professor holds “Office Hours.” These times should be listed on your syllabus. You can email your professor to let them know that you are coming, or you can just show up. If the times listed don’t work for you, email your professor to make an appointment.

Professors are there to help. They enjoy the topic they are teaching and would be happy to discuss your concerns. Professors design courses in a certain way. They can explain the best way to approach the subject and course content.

If you have big picture study concerns, think about contacting or visiting Learning Support Services. They offer workshops on time management skills, study strategies, academic reading, learning styles, test taking, and test anxiety. You can also schedule weekly sessions to help you organize. Also, there are weekly Homework Help sessions available or Introductory Chemistry and Physics courses.

Finally, you should feel free to contact your advisor. They are there to help you work through these issues and may have additional tips.

Have a good weekend!


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