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Academic behaviors – such as class attendance, timeliness of assignment completion, and class participation – that foster learning and success

College-level courses can demand a great deal more than what you may recall from high school. While you may not be required to attend every course, doing so is absolutely crucial to passing. Likewise, homework, readings, or other assignments may or may not be required, but are where you have a chance to master what you learned in the course. Lastly, many courses not only grade participation (e.g., classroom discussions, online discussion boards), but use this as a major tool for learning.

Perhaps the most important part of Engagement is that it can vary from course to course. Therefore, it’s on you to learn what’s expected of each course and make sure you fulfill those requirements. Remember that, even though a reading or assignment may not be graded at the time it’s given to you, it’s a critical part of your learning and will definitely be needed later on.

Tell me and I forget.

Teach me and I remember.

Involve me and I learn.

Benjamin Franklin

How can I improve my Engagement?

Strategies to Use

  • First thing’s first: go to class! Whether it’s required or not, it’s the best thing you can do to give yourself a chance at success.

  • When you do show up to class, make sure you get involved. Asking questions, engaging in conversations, and other forms of engagement are perhaps more important than what’s “in the book.”

  • Make sure to complete all readings, homework, and assignments - even if they’re not “required.” Many professors expect you to be completing this work, and you won’t realize its importance until it’s too late (i.e., test time).

  • In online classes, apply these same principles to reviewing materials, engaging in discussion boards, and completing your work. “In class” can mean both virtual and in-person.

Resources at Montclair State

  • CAST offers tutoring services, supplemental instruction, workshops (including how-to guides to navigate online platforms and courses), access to online course support (navigate online platforms, tips for succeeding in an online course, internet and hotspot access), and links to external supplemental instructional materials.

  • Center for Writing Excellence (CWE) offers in-person and online appointments for every type of writing, workshops, and various online resources. The CWE fosters confidence, independence, and self-efficacy with short- and long-term goals.

  • Study abroad supports learning opportunities in other countries.

  • Social Justice and Diversity includes centers for LGBTQ+, multicultural, women, and faith communities.

  • Residence Life assists in finding campus housing and offers opportunities to connect with other residents at MSU.

  • Commuter Life strives to create a strong community amongst the Commuter Students at Montclair State University by providing fun, social and educational events and a mentorship for first-year students to help you get the most out of your college career! Look to us for a wealth of resources relative to parking, commuter life, transit info and more.

  • Center for Student Involvement houses the volunteer center, commuter life, greek life, and civic & voter engagement.

  • Student Government Association aims to enrich your college experience by giving students opportunities to connect with others, explore new interests and lead their own clubs.

  • Center for Community Engagement offers opportunities for students to engage their community, both on and off campus.

  • SCM Production Studios offers students access to state-of-the-art production facilities.

  • Office of Student Belonging promotes cohort-based experiences that promote a strong connection and sense of belonging to the university.

  • Feliciano Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation has built an innovative, inclusive and supportive community to help ANY student who is looking to launch or grow their idea or business or who wants to cultivate a more entrepreneurial mindset. 

  • Harry A. Sprague Library offers an Ask A Librarian service to help with finding sources and doing research (drop-in at the reference desk, chat live online, email, phone, text, Zoom/in-person appointments); study spaces; workshops (how to use the library, how to conduct research, how to use Google Scholar); and assistive technology. In addition, use the library website to find sources for your assignments and coursework (ebooks, print books, articles, streaming videos, and more).

Online Resources

All of the apps below are free for both iOS and Android and can help you organize your schedule and assignments

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