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What to expect from academic coaching sessions

Academic coaches will: 

• Ask questions to get to know you, your strategies, your habits, and your goals.

• Discuss research-based learning strategies based on how you learn best.

• Help you create a plan to meet your academic goals.

• Provide feedback as you try new strategies and make adjustments during follow-up appointments.

• Not assist with course-specific problems, homework, exams, or quizzes.

Remember, our coaches are students, too.

Be respectful of the coach’s time, and let them know if you need to cancel a session or will be late. Save any questions you might have for the academic coaching session. Please do not call, email, or text questions related to classwork. Instead, make a follow-up  appointment.

Our coaches have the right to end a session if you are:

• Not participating or contributing during the session.

• Being disrespectful to the coach or coaching space.

• Using a phone, laptop/computer/tablet, or other device not related to coursework.

• Missing necessary materials (homework, books, notes, etc.).

How to get the most from your session

Bring any apps, calendars, or tools you’re currently using. To help us get a sense of what strategies you’re already doing, bring all the tools you’re currently using to be successful. For example, if you’d like to talk about time management, bring your calendar or a sample of what you currently do to keep track of assignments and tasks. If you don’t know where to start, that’s OK! Just come ready to chat.

Come ready to work. Coaches will ask many questions during a session to get to know you and how you best learn. Be ready to answer questions, try new things, and collaborate.

Learning takes time. Your brain needs time to process and develop new connections. It is OK not to understand something right away. No matter what your starting point is, you can learn, grow, and improve with time. Give yourself grace and adopt a growth mindset. All of us are capable of improvement through dedication and time, and if you believe that, then you will!

Habit change is hard. Sometimes, adjusting to a new strategy is difficult. You may start off really strong and then lose your “oomph” as time goes on. That is normal, and doesn’t mean that you can’t make changes and try again.

Try your best. During the appointment, you will set goals and come up with a plan and next steps to try new strategies. After the appointment, it will be up to you to implement the plan, which may require change. All we ask, is that you put in a good-faith effort to try the strategies.

Does the strategy not work for you? That’s OK! We all learn differently, and some of the strategies we may initially suggest may not work for you. We can help you to find the best strategy even if it takes a few tries.

Use your resources. Academic coaching is just one resource available to you, but there are many others in the community you can approach when you have questions: instructors, advisors, residential advisors, librarians and tutors. Even if you’re not sure if you’re approaching the right person, go ahead and ask them your question, and if they don’t have the answer, they can likely find the person who does know the answer. When you’re stuck, go to study groups, review sessions, office hours, tutoring resources, the course website, lecture slides, videos, podcasts, and your notes to find beneficial ways to connect with the material.

Review our policies. Make sure you understand any policies and procedures relating to the service you are seeking.

Set realistic expectations. Time with your coach will be limited. In a typical session, you may only address one or two of your academic goals. Come ready with a set of priorities so that the most important questions are addressed first. It’s OK to make follow-up appointments to talk about other goals.

Take responsibility for your performance. We do not guarantee grades for visits with us. A coach may offer advice and strategies, but ultimately it is your choice whether or not to incorporate the strategies. Your success in your class relies on the resources you take advantage of, your own work, and your efforts.