Obtain College Grants For Single Mothers | Best Tips and Advice to Help Secure Your Funds

With thanks to the current US Administration, College Grants For Single Mothers are widely available. Are you a single mom who would like to have the opportunity to provide your children with a better way of life? Just imagine for the moment, if you would? Perhaps, now is the time to think about returning to college as there are several different kinds of college grants for single mothers available, including the Pell Grant type.

It is imperative to complete the grant application process in the correct way. If you don't, the chances of your application being approved by the awarding agency is greatly reduced.

Below, I offer a number of tips that you may find useful in ensuring that your application for college grants for single mothers is approved.

Tip 1 - When it comes to grants, the first thing you need to know is that, those who apply for them, don't need to meet any eligibility requirements. So, it is important that you clearly identify to the reviewer, why you need this more than the other students who have applied for it. This truly comes from heart.

Tip 2 - Always make sure that you complete the form in full and never leave any questions unanswered. However, if you feel that a certain question does not relate to you, then clearly show your reasons why. Also, make sure that when sending through the application that, you provide all supporting material that is needed such as letters of recommendation, essays or transcripts.

Tip 3 - Make sure that you follow the directions provided and laid out within the application. You should only provide documents or information that has been asked for. There's no need to overwhelm reviewer. Answer what is asked, but thoroughly.

Tip 4 - Although, you may consider your handwriting to be neat it is far to complete the application on your PC and then print it off. Plus it is a good idea to before you start filling it out online to print out a blank copy that you can read through slowly and carefully, and then fill in by hand before typing it up.

Psychologically, this way you can avoid making silly mistakes on the completed form that could result in the grant application being rejected.

Tip 5 - Enrol for a $10,000 Government give away!

Don't miss it, you can do it safely - HERE!

If you decide to apply for college grants or single mothers, remember, further help is available online and it shouldn't be overlooked.

According to US Department of Education, 89% (over 11.2 million students) of the FAFSA submissions were submitted electronically (or online). It indicates substantial increase of 12.7% that people are using internet for research and applications.


After months of research on my part, I have come across this excellent site - College Grants For Single Mothers. This one is worth checking out!

Site is legitimate, informative, simple to navigate and tailored to your educational interests, so you don’t have to waste your valuable time going from end to end filling up unnecessary forms.

Above all remember, every step you take gets you closer to achieving your education goals.

How to Plan Your Studying and Achieve the Best Grades

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Why Should You Consider An Online Master's Degree

If you want to continue your higher education, a master's degree can be a very viable option. Moreover, if you want to proceed with this without actually needing to go to school, you can opt for an online master's degree. In today's fast paced world, people have less and less time. With the advancement of the Internet, there are solutions though. Getting an online degree from the comfort of your own home has never been easier.

If you are already a graduate, you may know that a master's degree will take your knowledge base even further. You will be required to take advanced courses or even write your own thesis. This thesis will be based on your own research, which will be done independently.

Usually, a master degree will advance your career, giving you more possibilities and opening more doors for you. For instance, an M.A. that you might have acquired in Family Counseling will qualify you for a counseling position. Moreover, if you want to make a career in a university yourself, you will definitely need to go through the process of acquiring a master's degree. This is the case of subject like History, Physics or any other academic studies you might want to teach.

Now let's familiarize you with another term. Have you heard of terminal degrees? As the name clearly suggests, these are the king of Master's degrees that require no further study. For instance, the MFA, an abbreviation from Master of Fine Arts, is the final step that painters, sculptors or photographers can take.

The number of hours needed to be taken in order to complete the course varies from subject to subject. For instance, the majority of them will last 3 or 4 semesters (which is roughly 30 hours). But this is not a rule. There are certain Master's degrees that can be acquired only in double the number of hours. Even so, they will not last more than 36 months.

And now let's talk about some of the most important advantages of getting a Master's degree online. First of all, the most obvious one: comfort. Having the ability to study from the comfort of your own home is not something that everyone can do. You will feel more relaxed, you will feel less pressure and more desire to learn overall.

Then, there is the time factor. Studying at home and taking the hours at their own pace is very important for people who already have a full time job. Having a full time job doesn't necessarily mean that you can't continue your education, especially with so many very good universities offering comprehensive online programs.

Some of the best universities that have expanded their horizons and started giving classes online include: University of Phoenix (which also has a branch for international students), Walden University, Capella University, Florida's St. Leo University and many more others. Getting an online Master's degree can be a very important option. Will it help your career? It definitely will. So if you are looking for alternative study options, you need to take this one into serious consideration.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Using the Internet for Statistical Analyses

Statistical analyses are the tests of the various problems of statistics, or the field that records and defines the occurrence of events within a group or population. The study of statistics was an offshoot of the probability theory that was postulated by Blasé Pascal to try to predict and order the occurrence of random events. Probability theory continues to be a fundamental aspect of the study of statistics. However, Statistics is a formal mathematical field that deals with discrete events that occur over time in the realm of large populations of events or individuals.  Statistical analyses deal with numbers on the large scale.

There are a great number of statistical analyses that are used in every day life to calculate the relative risk of an activity, to determine the performance of a particular stock on the stock exchange or to work out the odds of horse racing. It is important to study the various types of statistical analyses to fully understand what type of information they will supply and to what form of problem they are best applied. A thorough understanding of statistical analyses is required to know how to use the tools available to get the information needed from a virtual sea of data and numbers. There is no shortcut or substitution for learning the fundamental concepts and theories behind statistical analyses.

There is fortunately a very good substitute for performing the calculations oneself, which is nearly impossible in most large scale applications.  There are several options on the Internet that provide programs for performing statistical analyses. On the site ubalt.edu you will find all the information necessary for determining just what form of statistical or data analyses you need to do for the application that is in mind, whether it is related to business or has to do with population genetics. The information on the site will guide the user through the various theoretical tests of a situation, instruct one clearly on the type of result the test will yield and tell the user exactly which test to run for the size of the defined population.  This site also has many links to other websites that specialize in performing certain statistical analyses, such as those related to business statistics or health statistics.  There is also a tutorial link to an application for learning to use an Excel program to run Statistical and data analyses.  An additional link is to a website specializing in Time series Analyses as it relates to business forecasting, an indisputably relevant tool.  

The individual performing statistical analyses may want to pursue the link to Computers and Computational Statistics, which will actually allow the individual to run a specific analysis on a specific data set.

Another useful link is the one that explains the principles behind Questionnaire Design and Surveys Sampling, since this all-important feature is the way to select a group or population to analyse. It is important to know that a group must be correctly formed with unifying characteristics for the subsequent data to have any relevance at all.

Saturday, 23 July 2011

The Shocking Truth About How To University Online

In today's world, it seems that almost any topic is open for debate. While I was gathering facts for this article, I was quite surprised to find some of the issues I thought were settled are actually still being openly discussed.

DeVry University Online provides the flexibility you need to complete your degree whenever and wherever it 2019s convenient for you.  Your request will be submitted and the information from Kaplan University Online will be sent to you via mail within a few days.  DeVry University Online provides the flexibility you need to complete your degree whenever and wherever it's convenient for you.  Attend South University online classes and you will never have to adjust your schedule to accommodate a class time.  Colorado Technical University online provides the alumni services and comprehensive career services helping students and graduates to find jobs and further their careers.  Colorado Technical University Online courses are presented in a rich multimedia format that enables students to interact as often as they like.  With DeVry University Online, you can earn a bachelor's degree from the convenience of your home or office by completing your coursework entirely online.  Distance learning university online education degrees at bachelors, masters and doctorate levels.  Product Management University Online is a simple, economical and convenient way to improve your product management and product marketing execution with simple step-by-step techniques.  

Truthfully, the only difference between you and University Online experts is time. If you'll invest a little more time in reading, you'll be that much nearer to expert status when it comes to University Online.

  Product Management University Online is a simple, economical and convenient way to improve your product management and product marketing execution with simple step-by-step techniques.  DeVry University Online provides the flexibility you need to complete your degree whenever and wherever it 2019s convenient for you.  DeVry University Online provides the flexibility you need to complete your degree whenever and wherever it's convenient for you.  With DeVry University Online, you can earn a bachelor's degree from the convenience of your home or office by completing your coursework entirely online.  Colorado Technical University online provides the alumni services and comprehensive career services helping students and graduates to find jobs and further their careers.  Distance learning university online education degrees at bachelors, masters and doctorate levels.  Attend South University online classes and you will never have to adjust your schedule to accommodate a class time.  Your request will be submitted and the information from Kaplan University Online will be sent to you via mail within a few days.

If you've picked some pointers about University Online that you can put into action, then by all means, do so. You won't really be able to gain any benefits from your new knowledge if you don't use it.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Students Find Remedy For Homework Headaches

The majority of students today are using the PC for homework and research (according to JupiterResearch, U.S. Online Teen Media Consumer Survey, 2005). But even with an abundance of information and technology at their disposal, it can be difficult for students to find the tools they need for their specific assignments. In an independent survey recently commissioned by Microsoft Corp., teachers (71 percent) and parents (56 percent) agree that students don't always find the homework help they need on the Internet.

Seeking A Solution To The Problem

Like many teenagers, eighth-grader Jason Orchant is glued to his computer. But he wasn't always sure where to access the right assistance for his homework assignments. He was often overwhelmed by the amount of information and resources he found on the Web. He also wasted a lot of time deciphering which tools were credible, which information was relevant and which resources were helpful to his specific needs as a middle-school student. Jason's father, Marc, noticed this frustration. He knew the computer helped his son with homework but wondered if the process could be easier for Jason. Marc discovered Microsoft Student, a software package full of tools to help kids complete their homework. Marc thought it might be able to help his son with his homework woes by providing trusted, relevant content and streamlining the resources at his disposal.

The Grades Are In

After a semester of using Microsoft Student for his homework, Jason found he was able to complete his assignments more efficiently and with less stress. The Graphing Calculator, Chart Maker and Online Math Homework Help offered him assistance with his difficult math assignments. The Encarta encyclopedia made it easy to conduct research and compile credible information for a history project on Rhode Island. Jason also loved the student-based templates and tutorials for Microsoft Office Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

There's no doubt that technology can help students succeed academically. In fact, nearly nine out of 10 teachers believe that students who use technology do better on their homework, according to the independent survey commissioned by Microsoft. Rather than being left to the wilds of the Internet, students can use the tools available to get more out of the computer for their assignments.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Student Grant Money: Online Availability

The United States Congress allocates free grant money to 57 federal agencies including the Department of Education. The Federal Department of Education is part of a government-wide effort to streamline the online grant application process with several measures of their own.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is one measure to facilitate the free grant money application to students. The website www.Grants.gov is another measure. The website was launched in October 2003 as an online database where grant seekers would be able to view federal agency offerings. As of late April, only about 80% of the department’s opportunities had been placed on the website. This amounted to 32 of the 40 grant packages the department had intended to have available online.

Some agencies had not gotten involved at all in the online process at this point, while others had exceeded their goals. Numerous agencies had exceeded their goals to the point that on average, they were providing 14 percent more opportunities for free grants than they had planned for. The Department of Education’s progress was very slow toward their goals, with no real explanation. It had initially expected around 1500 free grant applications on the website, but had only received 469 to that point, representing 31 percent. The Federal government had received only 23 percent of the applications it had expected to that point. The grants website has shown signs of growing. The first year and a half brought in 2751 free government grant applications.

One of the reasons for the lagging grant applications on the website is considered to be the change in process. Grant seekers have been adjusting to the new delivery format while the grant community is slowly getting the word out and providing instructional information to grant seekers. A resistance to change is considered another source of the lagging applications, as users are required to register through a system-to-system process. It should be noted that the website application process was not built to facilitate Mac use in making online applications.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Students: 5 Ways to Improve Your Memory

“Oh God, tomorrow is exam! Will I remember what I have studied?” This fear haunts many students. Now, don’t fear friend. You can remember what you study. Provided, you use those study methods that help your brain to remember better.

Here are five ‘Brain-friendly’ study methods that help to improve your memory and remember your study lessons easily:

1.   Study with short breaks

Take short breaks while studying. Do not study continuously for more than 30 to 45 minutes.
Give a break of five to ten minutes in between two sessions.

Such short breaks give rest to your brain and help it to reinforce what you are learning. This will make it easy for you to understand more and remember better.

Do not read any new information during these short breaks. Just relax or walk around.

2.  Explain to yourself

Explain what you study to yourself. Pretend you are both the student and the teacher, and try to explain the chapter or study topic to yourself.

This kind of ‘explaining’ automatically helps you to learn the subject in detail. Hence you will remember it clearly.

3.  Discuss

Discuss important study topics with a willing classmate. Holding such discussion will jog your memory. This is like another form of revision.

Also, you will become aware of important points about those study topics. This will help both you and your classmate to learn more and remember more. 

4.  Sleep well

Yes, sleep cosily. Good sleep is essential for good memory.

Recent research has shown that lack of sufficient sleep interferes with memory function. Because during sleep and rest period, our brain processes and consolidates information which it records during the day.

So do not skip sleep; especially during the exam days. Sleep for at least six hours. Eight hours is best.

5. Eat Well

Now what has eating got to do with remembering more? Simple. What we eat affects our brain’s performance. Poor nutrition leads to learning and memory problems.

So make sure you include nutrient-rich food items like--whole grains, nuts, fruits, vegetables, and milk in your diet. This will keep your brain healthy and happy.

The above five remedies are easy to follow. They definitely help to strengthen your memory and achieve more success in your studies.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Speed Reading Basics

Speed reading is vital in today’s business and academic world, with the vast information that the internet offers, and the huge amounts of reading tasks an average manager or student faces, there is really no choice but to try and increase the intake of information.

In the last forty years there has a been an explosion of information, we are living the information revolution and that requires a lot of young professionals a great deal of effort in digesting this information and making good use of it.

Most of the people who attend speed reading courses and classes have some kind of problem, or believe they have some kind of problem, with their reading, here are a few of these potential problems.

Lack of concentration or partial/impaired concentration is an obvious problem for speed reading, the effects of the environment on ones reading rhythm and the general tendency of some people to be able of acceptable reading rate only in ideal situations. This problem is one of the basic speed reading problems and is usually dealt with in most courses.

Poor eye movement may cause some readers to shift their eyes to other directions and than go back to the book or paper to relocated the last point read. This problem also correlates with poor mechanical skills, which can be a real problem in speed reading.

Short attention span is a clear problem, almost everyone knows this problem, you start strong and begin to slow down as you read on. This kind of problem typically creates a situation of going back to re-read some lines over and over again, or a need to read the same sentence a couple of times for lack of understanding or loosing the line of thought altogether.

Reading by heart, when a person reads to himself (muttering the words or even reading out load) is an obvious problem since speed reading is much faster than talking, the reading out load inhibited the ability to read fast and also regulates a slow input of information into the cognitive.

Delayed reaction to information and material – This delay often comes from inattention, reading ahead or distraction. Desire to remember every word – This is loosely related to the tendency to re-read or slow down.

So what can you do to increase your reading skills? Do you really need to try speed reading you should you consider just eliminating some of these problems. The answer is most likely dependent of what you need, no matter what you problem is, you need to address the problem.

To try and read faster, here are a few tips that would get you going. Think of reading as a ‘pick and choose’ activity, where you can choose to read the words and phrases that are critical to comprehension, and skip over the connective tissue.

One major key in speed reading is filtering out all the words that has nothing to do with the subject and naturally, there a lot of them. All the connecting words, basically words that are there to connect one word with the other to make a sentence (TO make A sentence) the “and” “it’s” and “and’s” have got to go, just make yourself blind to them, go over these words and do not dwell on reading or noticing them.

Practicing time reading is also good, set up a timer and see how much you read in one minute, and in five minutes. Try and honestly estimate how much did you get from the text (make sure this is something you read for the first time), and try to beat yourself at this over and over again, until you start to feel that you have moved up one level. Experiment with different texts, and try to find books with text that has some questions about what you just read so you can apprise your understanding. Evaluate your situation every time you do this, reading faster sometimes mean that you will make more mistakes on understanding the subject, you should start making “mental notes” while reading so you will not fail answering the questions.

Train yourself to read more quickly by forced timing. If you are a runner, training for a race, you go out and run every day and you try to improve your time or your distance.

Set a timer and run a reading race every day for two to four weeks. You do not have to spend more than five minutes on this exercise. You may become frustrated, at first, by the fact that you cannot read as fast or remember as much as you would like.

Practice makes perfect, and this is the most basic thing you can do to increase your reading speed, in two weeks you should see some improvement, and you should work on the weaker aspects of your reading skills. This is the start of speed reading, and once you master the basics you will be on your way to becoming a speed reader.

Thursday, 30 June 2011

Scholarships - They Are Literally Money In The Bank

Are you a high school student or single parent getting ready for college? Or maybe you have your undergraduate degree but are now looking to go to professional school of some kind? Well let me tell you, you have your work cut out for you. Not only do you have to have gotten good grades in school but you also have to pay a premium for your education in today's economic climate. Education is a good as gold and the universities aren't stupid, so they charge a lot of "gold" for it. The good new is that college is not only for the rich kids whose parents pay for everything. There are ways to pay for school without working for 15 years after high school at McDonald's to raise enough money. The best option is usually the scholarships that are offered.

Scholarships come in many shapes and sizes and carry with them all sorts of different expectations and criteria. The great thing about it is that there are literally more available than people use and so it is almost a lock to find large chunks of money that you can use to pay for school. The other piece of good news is that scholarships are often based on need and the people that hand them out are trying as hard as they can to find people who are serious about their education and will make a difference, for the better, using their education gained.

The potentially bad news is that many aren't used because people don't even know that they exist. This is due to a huge amount of scholarships that seemed to have exploded in the last 30 years and grown faster than people could organize them. Currently efforts are being made to change this and there are now several indexes that students can purchase that give all of the information necessary to contact the benefactor and provide them with the required data to show their need and also how they are going to use the money in a useful way for the betterment of mankind.

This news is becoming less bad with the explosion of the internet and its capacity to search using computers. This has taken a lot of the time out of the picture and has also allowed student so search through many more possibilities, and find and apply to more scholarships, which maximizes their chances of getting the money they need to choose their own destiny in this life through education.

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Reading Strategies For Struggling Readers

Struggling readers are simply individuals who have not learned effective reading strategies. Don't be too concerned if you aren't familiar with the term, "reading strategies;" most good readers never had to learn them; instead, they just use them naturally. Struggling readers, on the other hand, have no idea how their friends can finish their work before they make it through the first paragraph. Why is it that their friends are reading "Lord of the Rings" and they are still reading "Magic Tree House" books? How do their friends manage to read those really long and unfamiliar words with ease?

Reading strategies can be organized into two distinct groups: decoding strategies and comprehension strategies.

Decoding Strategies

Without getting into a long debate over whether children should learn to read through phonics or whole language, the fact is that some students need to be taught explicitly phonemic awareness. Phonemic awareness is basically being able to pronounce the bits and pieces of words to turn them into words that the student knows or has heard. Even if the word is unfamiliar, students with good phonemic awareness can usually pronounce a reasonable representation of the word. Struggling readers need to be taught the sounds of the language--the phonemes--and to be given plenty of opportunity and coaching in their use.

Some indicators that a student needs explicit instruction in phonemic awareness include: skipping words while reading, "sounding out" words incorrectly, attempting a pronunciation that doesn't make sense, and avoiding reading.

It is helpful if students are able to recognize and spell a number of simple words. Dolch vocabulary words are great for younger students. For older students, try to get a list of the 1000 most common words in the English language. Phonemic awareness starts with letter sounds. Students learn how to pronounce various combinations of letters, and they learn that letters are not always pronounced the way they should be. Consider a simple example: the word, "the," is pronounced with a short u sound. Students compare unfamiliar words with words that they know; thus the necessity for a good repertoire of sight words.

A common decoding strategy that is taught to struggling readers is called chunking. If students have developed some proficiency with phonemes, they can begin chunking unfamiliar words. Using their finger, they cover all but a chunk of the unfamiliar word. They pronounce it then move onto the next chunk. Once the student has pronounced all of the chunks, they try to put the chunks together and make it sound like a word they know or have heard. This strategy, again, requires a significant amount of practice and coaching.

One school of thought considers the ability to decode words a precursor to reading comprehension. After all, if you can't understand the individual words, how can you understand the whole sentence? Often, a struggling reader will cope with their abilities by getting answers from other students, answering the text explicit questions (e.g. "The girl's red hair blew in the breeze." What color was the girl's hair?), or making excuses for not getting their work done--avoidance behaviors.

Comprehension Strategies

Good readers regularly re-read, predict, infer, conclude, question, compare, contrast; and the list goes on. Good readers don't usually realize what they were doing while reading unless someone forces them to reflect on it. Struggling readers do few of the things that good readers do. They generally have only one goal in reading--to get it over with. Understanding what was read is called comprehension. Comprehension strategies are those things that a reader does to understand a text.

There is one main indicator that a student needs explicit instruction in comprehension strategies--they are good decoders, but they can't answer higher level questions about the text. Higher level questions are ones that involve more than just extracting words from the text. For example, a higher level question related to the last paragraph is, "What goals do good readers have in reading?" A reasonable answer would involve contrasting the goal that struggling readers have in reading, using the information about what good readers regularly do, and using prior knowledge or experience.

There are many comprehension strategies that can be taught to struggling readers. Telling a struggling reader to just read it again won't cut it. They need direct support, explicit instruction, a lot of practice and coaching and many opportunities to experience success. Searching the Internet for reading strategies should garner a description of at least a dozen different tried and true strategies. Following is a brief description of just a few of them.

Re-Reading - Not to be confused with "just read it again," re-reading is a deliberate attempt to find information. With the question in mind, students attempt to find relevant sections of the text to re-read. Once they zero in on a relevant section, they usually read a few sentences or paragraphs before and a few sentences or paragraphs after. Sometimes, it is necessary to re-read the entire text to get the desired information.

Predicting - Using titles, pictures, or key words, students attempt to predict the content of a text. When the student reads the text, they make comparisons to what they predicted and what they read.

Re-Stating - This strategy encourages students to look at main ideas. They re-state what they read in a shorter version. Sometimes this strategy involves restricting how long the summary can be. For example, can you re-state the description of predicting in only two words?

The best support for struggling readers is individual and intensive. In my opinion, struggling readers make the most progress when they are given one-on-one support outside of the regular classroom. Individual support allows them to receive frequent and timely feedback on their efforts. Outside of the classroom means that the support is extra-curricular and does not interfere with their regular work. If you are a parent or a teacher of a struggling reader, find out what support is available at your school. Use the terms phonemic awareness and reading comprehension strategies to communicate what your child needs. If your school can't offer the support, look for commercial services. Even though it might cost money, the benefits will be outstanding; spend the money.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Preparing For Professional Examinations

The first step in preparing for any professional examination is to understand why the professional body is asking for external examinations to be taken. It is because they believe that they must have primary evidence that you know your subject at the level expected of a professional in that field. Examinations are considered by most of the professional bodies to be the only reliable format in assessing the competence of the diverse group of students wishing to be awarded professional status. Professionals in most sectors now practice in a global environment, and most professional qualifications are available internationally. In order to maintain a high standard of competence, and to guarantee at least a certain standard of professionalism, regardless of where the professional studied or practices, the most effective format is still the external examination.

Each professional body will have a set format. Some now also ask the student to complete regular assignments, or to complete an individual research project or dissertation, so covering much of the required background depth and breadth of knowledge. This in turn allows the setting of examination questions which focus on key areas which they believe can be best tested under examination conditions. The format applied by each professional body will be openly published in their study and examination guidelines, will be known to the course providers and the tutors, and will be visible in recent past papers. The student must ensure that they are familiar with this format. It is an essential factor in achieving success

This element of the preparation process is one that is often overlooked by mature students. Many international students will be studying for qualifications of professional bodies based in other countries, but will need to sit the examinations in their home country. This will often mean having to make arrangements to take the examination at embassies or other representative offices, usually in the capital city of the student’s country, where the professional body has made arrangements for the office to act as an examination centre. This is not something that can be left to the last minute, as there will be a deadline for acceptance, and secondly, the student will suffer additional negative stress during the critical revision period, if these arrangements are not made in good time.

For most mature students, especially those studying by distance learning, it will be necessary to arrange for absence from their workplace. This, at a minimum, will mean time away from work in order to travel, take the examination, and return, whilst for some a few days away to concentrate on the final stage of revision may be possible. If planned and agreed well in advance, the student can then relax about these issues and concentrate on preparing for and taking the examination.

Studying the course materials in a planned and thorough manner is essential. The core materials and supplementary research and reading should be studied as diligently as possible. Advice on this is contained in a sister article, but will be available from your course provider, tutors, and the professional body itself. It is mentioned here because it is often forgotten that without effective studying of the course materials it is unlikely that the student will be successful in the examinations.

The point of revision is to consolidate the knowledge and understanding gained during the course of study, and to reshape it into material that can be used effectively to answer the questions in the examination. Revision is a stage that needs planning for. Planning properly means that you need a revision plan, a timetable of activities which will result in you being prepared for the examination itself. When to start revision, how long to allocate, will depend on the nature of the examination. For example, if it is a single examination the revision period may be relatively short, perhaps one or two weeks only. However, if, as with many professional examinations, each stage requires two or three examination to be taken over a few days, then perhaps a month of revision would be more appropriate. How much to revise will again depend on the nature of the examination(s). Don’t try to recall or memorise the whole course content. Concentrate on preparing for questions about the main themes, the key topics, the most important areas of knowledge. To help you with this, ask advice from your tutors, look for clues in past papers, revisit the syllabus and look for the main topics there. Your revision plan will also be influenced by personal factors such as family, social, and work commitments. You will need to balance the demands of preparation and the importance of the success in the examinations, against these competing demands. If you are studying for professional examinations, you will need to give these priority during the revision period, and reap the benefits at a later stage in your career.

Overall, examiners, representing the professional body in writing the questions, are looking for evidence that you are sufficiently knowledgeable and competent to be awarded professional status. To demonstrate this, though, you will need to follow one simple rule. That is: answer the question. What the examiners require you to do is to answer the question that they have asked. It has been designed to give you the opportunity to provide the evidence that you are worthy of that status. If your answer(s) are not focused, do not answer the question, or complete the task, or give a surfeit of information which is irrelevant to the question, you will fail.

With the requirements of the Examiners in mind, you should practice identifying what the question is actually asking you to do or to discuss. To do this use past papers, make up your own questions, use the mini-questions and assignments in the coursework. Analyse questions and make notes on how you would answer them, and of course, practice answering them fully.

During the last few days before the examination itself, finalise your revision, but leave room for other, equally essential activities. These include confirming practical factors such as travel arrangements, access to the examination room, timings, materials that you need to take in with you. Also, give careful consideration to your general well-being, and try to eat and drink healthily, find time for relaxation, take exercises, and obtain sufficient sleep. Being in good physical condition will add to your chances of success.

Use the reading time wisely. Make a broad appraisal of the questions, and if there is choice, decide which questions you can answer best. Usually it is a good idea to select the question that you will answer first. This can often be obvious because it is the main question or one of those that carry the most marks. Don’t necessarily start writing immediately permission is given, as it can be much better to continue thinking and planning your tactics. List or mark the questions to show the order in which you intend to take them.

Before you answer any individual question, you should spend a few minutes, at least, on preparing your answer. This is to give structure to it, and to ensure that you will cover the main points. For each question, read it carefully and identify what the question is actually asking you to write about (remember the advice on what the examiners are expecting). List the key points that you intend to write about. The questions will always be based on material that you have studied on the course, so once you are certain that you understand what the question is asking of you, you can use your knowledge of the course materials to add points that you need to cover. Don’t fall into the trap of writing about everything you can think of related to the topic. Only give information relevant to answer the specific question being asked. In other words, stick to the point. Finally, don’t forget that in discussion answers you should show a clear structure: an introduction, the main discussion and key points, and a conclusion. If it is a calculation answer such as in accountancy examinations, present your answer in the required format. As with discussion questions, incomplete answers can still gain valuable marks, so don’t despair if your calculations are not perfect.

You will be asked to answer a certain number of questions in a fixed amount of time. After you have completed your reading of the paper and decided which question you will answer, allocate time per question according to the marks allocated to each question. As an example, if one question is worth 40% of the marks, then allocate 40% of the time to that question. The examiners will be expecting 40% of your efforts to be given to this question. Do this even if at that stage you are not sure which questions of smaller value you will answer last. Try not to overrun your allocated time for the larger value questions. If you spend 60% of your time on answering a 40% value question, that will only leave 40% of time to answer questions with 60% value. A recipe for disaster. If, as you near the end of the examination period, you are certain that you will not be able to answer the final question in full, change to a bullet point format, making clear notes on the key points that you would have discussed in more depth. Often this will gain you a few marks, as most examiners understand that perfect timing is not likely under examination conditions.

It is likely that you will not be informed of the result of the examination for many weeks, but you should review your performance within a few days of taking the examination. Reflect on how well you had prepared, how accurate had been your forecast of what questions would arise, how effectively you used the reading time, how well you managed your time, how well you answered each question. An honest evaluation made within a few days of the examination will be a valuable addition to your preparations for the next one. If you have more examinations immediately afterwards, carry out a brief review of the one that you have just completed, concentrating only on how you managed the examination itself.

The key to success in examinations is to be prepared. It is not sufficient to focus only on studying and revising, as for most mature students the examination experience is not one that they are highly practiced in. Taking examinations should be treated as a major project that needs careful planning and execution. The largest contributor to success in examinations is the preparation, not in the actual writing of answers to the examination questions. Be prepared and you will be successful.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

All About Plagiarism

With every passing day new discoveries are made and the scope of information is increasing with prospects that it is becoming difficult for humans to handle information efficiently thus resulting in e-cheating and plagiarism.

Plagiarism can be defined as the deliberate use of another persons work with reference to your name without acknowledging the original source. This is evaluated as cheating as one is trying to take credit for someone else’s work. However taking references from someone else’s work and mentioning his/her name on each line copied as it is, is not part of plagiarism. It is called in text citation.

Plagiarism is becoming really common these days in assessments that students submit for their college work. This is considered as a serious offence as attempt like this undermines the value of college degrees. It has been until recently that the managements have decided to impose harsh penalties on students who are found guilty of plagiarism.

Ways to Combat Plagiarism

In order to avoid plagiarism, several universities and schools have started using anti plagiarism software’s and other electronic methods to detect plagiarism that can detect similarities and frequencies of words and phrases. In other schools the management also keeps track of the work previously submitted by students in order to ensure that the work is not copied from earlier years.

In order to avoid plagiarism students are nowadays made to sign statements in which they accept that the work they have submitted, is their own and the contribution from other sources has been properly acknowledged. Because that’s what being in a community is all about, learning together and cooperating such gestures make the students realize the importance of their acts and portray that the management is vigilant about their work and that plagiarism or e-cheating can get them into trouble.

The central point is that when one is producing a piece of work that would be evaluated, one must entirely cite his own work, written by him in his own words and containing his own ideas, interpretations, approaches etc. in case the ideas and words have been copied from someone else then it should be stated clearly with proper reference. Precisely its easy for a person to avoid plagiarism, all what matters is that one should put his/her own effort into the material he submits for assignment. Students who deceive are more likely to become white collar criminal thus depriving the hard workers from achieving their goal.


Fighting plagiarism and e-cheating has become very essential in these times especially because text from all across the globe can be viewed through internet. People who fake someone else’s work as their own must be caught because with purloining someone’s hard work they may pass in their degrees and probably get jobs, but they will have difficulty once they enter into their professional lives. Secondly with vigilant software working to catch plagiarism, students with real aptitude will come out in the light and the carefree attitude towards studies could be warned against.

Monday, 20 June 2011

Paralegal Schools

Paralegal Schools offer many options to help you get formally trained as a professional paralegal.

Typically a paralegal school will offer an Associate's Degree Program or a Certificate Program. Also you may find some paralegal schools that offer a Bachelor Degree or a Master Degree.

The Associate's Degree will take around 2 years of study, the Certificate will only need a few months, while the Bachelor's or Master's degrees will require 4 years.

As a whole the job market now require some shape of formal training and diploma. Gone are the days where only some typing skills and a clean pair of shoes assured you a job.

In order to qualify for a Paralegal Certificate you need an Associate or a Bachelor's degree, but some schools require only a high school diploma or a GED.

Also you may want to consider online paralegal schools. The online courses offer many advantages like schedule flexibility and reduced costs. Each course completed is credited towards the degree. A great advantage of online schools is that many will let you pay each course individually...

You may have already discovered that paralegal schools and online paralegal schools are very abundant to say the least. So I recommend that you take a special approach to select your own school and training. If you plan to study in a formal classroom versus an online paralegal school then obviously the physical location of the schools will help narrow the search, because you may prefer an institution that is close to your home. This step being taken I recommend that you analyze the current job market listings and that you note the training requirements for paralegal or legal assistants hiring. This will greatly help you select the amongst the school offerings and will almost guarantee you a strong position on your future job market.

Many job listings will ask for a Bachelor's Degree and/or a Certificate and specialized experience and many Junior Paralegal jobs will require training and some general experience.

Note that most paralegal schools will help you get the required base of experience thru internships or externships with various field experience and hands-on training. Also in the case of a career change, a good portion of your actual experience may apply to one of the many specializations of this field. In most cases only a couple years of related experience will be required.

So if you plan a career change or if you want to qualify for an interesting career you may find that Paralegal Schools are the fast track to a really decent salary (40K to over 100K is the norm) and some neat extras like bonuses and a fair amount of independence on the job.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

No Knowledge No College GOODBYE Career

Wondering what to give the children for Christmas, wondering what gives joy, wondering how to educate/occupy and provide fun at the same time. Well stop wondering because we now have the eighth wonder of the world, and that is the Internet.

The best ever present that you could give to your child is the opportunity to further their education. We all know how the biggest majority of our kids hate school and teachers. How do you expect your child to learn when in a rebellious stage between the hours of 9am to 3pm? Yes you got it one, school time.

Let us go back to our schooldays, how much did you learn on subjects that did not interest you? If it had been a topic you enjoyed then it was a hop skip and jump through the corridor to that class. You don't see our kids doing this today.

It is only right that children should be given the chance to choose what subject it is that they would like further education on. If this course of action was put to use then expect more pass results.

Let's say your child loves science and his/her typical Monday studies consist of 6 hours of Maths, English, Religious education and 1 hour of Science

So if he/she is looking for a career in the scientific world what chance do they have of achieving this?
Studying for six hours on subjects that are of know interest you will always have failed exams. If the education system was to take into account the child's feeling and give him/her 3 hours of the taboo subjects as they see them and 3 hours of science then you have one happy pupil with a ticket on the road to success.

With online education the odds are in your child's favour to excel because they now have control of their own destiny. Online education is a difficult gift to tinsel up but the sparkle in child's eye is enough glitter on Christmas morning when presented with a computer.
Thanks will allways come later in life when the kids have grown up.

By doing this mum/dad you have just given your child a lifeline to surviving in the 21st century.

Great prospects wait for those with a good educational upbringing but sadly the ones without may find themselves standing alongside Worzel Gummidge in fields of green. The grass is always greener on the other side with the help of a little knowledge.
The internet is a place where from toddler years upwards to pension age where learning is made so easy. Online education offers so much and is the only way forward.
The internet is teacher tutor listener a friend, get more involved with the worlds biggest information centre and learn. All this can be done in your own time not when others tell you too.

Children have to make certain grades to qualify for a place into college/university. So this is the importance of further education to secure them a position to advance forward with their chosen career.

No knowledge No College

All stories you hear about the internet should not give you reason for concern, because you the parent calls the shots and have complete control of your child's presence when surfing the web. Let the internet teach your children the difference between right and wrongs of the world.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

3 Common Types Of College Scholarship Grants

For there are several college students that need some help in order to continue their studies, there are college scholarship grants given to those who are in need or with special talent on a certain field.

There are 3 common types of scholarships grants awarded to college students and soon-to-be college students: athletic scholarship grant, academic scholarship grant, and departmental awards. Each has its criteria to consider before awarding the grant. Each also has a particular group of student to target.

Academic Scholarship Grant

This type of scholarship grant is awarded to students who achieve a qualified GPA or has achieved an exceptional academic performance before entering college. This grant is usually awarded to students who have received honors. It is sometimes awarded automatically upon entering college or university but most schools require application for academic scholarship grants.

Basically, the primary focus of schools giving academic scholarship is of course the academic aspect; however, some colleges and universities base the grant on either merit or need, or both.

Upon passing an academic scholarship grant, the student is required to maintain a ceiling grade. If not achieved after the end of the term, colleges and universities usually put the student on probationary status until the grades reached the prescribed level. If not achieved however, the academic scholarship grand may be terminated.

Athletic Scholarship Grant

If you are on the competitive edge, you get an athletic scholarship grant. However, this is highly sought after type of scholarship and there are many students applying for this.

An athlete of course wants to go through college for free using this type of scholarship. Some even dream to finish college as an athlete. And this dream is not far from the realizing. With good personal marketing and exceptional skill in any sport, you will be able to apply and be granted with this type of scholarship.

Departmental Awards

This type of scholarship grant aims to provide the student with the option to stay or take up his or her studies on a particular department. Usually, it is offered to exceptional students with desire to take other fields. The departmental awards are given so as not to keep the students in the department. Or, it is given to attract interested students to take study at a particular department.

You can inquire about this type of scholarship directly on the department of the school.

There are other college scholarship grants that are given to students but basically, these three are the ones given by the schools themselves.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

The future is Online Degrees

With the wide range of opportunity available to obtain an online degree, it almost doesn't make sense to go to a university or college. Of course online courses will never be able to match the full immersion that an actual insitution can offer, but for someone who is working, or tied down with other commitments, it can open doors that where closed before.

Whether you need to upgrade your education for a promotion at work, or to even just get the job that you want, an online education might be right for you. It's generally more affordable and most importantly flexible then a competing course at a university or college.

Online universities are striving constantly to become more reputable, and to offer courses in competitive fields. Keeping that in mind, the entrance requirements are typically the same for both online & offline.

A typical online degree can be completed in about 3 years, but of course that varies on how much commitment you give to the course, and also if you have any previous credits that are applicable. One of the most important things to do when considering out on the path of an online education is to do your research! Research both the history of the school, as well as the current reputation, and if the degree you will obtain will be recognized for what it is you need down the road. There has been instances in the past where some online institutions have basically just been selling degrees, which can lead to several problems such as: Loss of jobs, and involvement with authorities.

Keep a level head on your shoulders, do your homework, and you will make out just fine!

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Student Financial Aid Types You Should Know

There are many types of financial aids offer to college and university students. While a few are gifted aids and do not need to be paid back; others are provided as a loan and need to be paid back after the completion of the education program.

In general, student financial aids are grouped in below categories:
  • Grant
  • Fellowship
  • Scholarship
  • Loan
  • Work Study
  • Waiver

What are the differences between these financial aids? Many people confuse especially on grant, fellowship and scholarship. Let's take a brief look on these financial aids. Grant, Fellowship & Scholarship A grant is a gifted financial aid for a student that does not have to be paid back. Fellowship is a fund awarded to a graduate student in a college or university. And scholarship is a financial aid usually awarded based on merit or academic achievement. Both fellowship and scholarship are grant. Practically, these terms very little in different and in fact, these terms are used interchangeably in representing fund gifted to students to support their college or university study.


A study loan is a financial aid offers to students and these money need to be repaid after the completion of the study program. Although there are loans offered with zero interest rate by charities, associations or religions organization, most of loan programs have repayment provisions and repayment interest rate applied.

Work Study

This program provides jobs that enable students to earn a portion of school costs through employment at the institution. Many colleges and universities offer job to students where they can earn their school fee and part of their living expenses.


Under certain circumstances, a college or university may allow a student to attend the courses without paying tuition or other costs. A certain eligibility requirements need to be met in order for eligible for the waiver.

Last Words

Ideally, all students are dreamed to get free money (grant, fellowship or scholarship) to aid their study needs. Although there are many scholarships available out there for students to apply, beware of Scholarship Scam. Remember if you have to pay to get money, it probably a scam.

Friday, 3 June 2011

Selecting an Online University

People who want higher education but who don't live near a college or university offering courses they want used to be out of luck. No more. Now it is possible to study almost any subject online. It may require more self-discipline to pursue a degree this way. However, students at online universities can attend classes at their convenience, making it possible to earn a living at the same time as earning a degree.

What to look for

There are now many online universities. Some online degree programs are offered by traditional universities with campuses, while others only exist in cyberspace. Selecting the right school and being sure your degree will be recognized by potential employers is the first step. How can you tell whether a program is a real educational experience or a diploma mill? Here are some things to find out before signing up.

Look for a university with accreditation from a recognized accrediting organization. This is important because it means the school meets established standards of quality. Well-known universities like the University of Florida, Northwestern, Purdue and Notre Dame are examples of accredited institutions. The U.S. Department of Education recognizes universities accredited by one of the six accrediting bodies. Students who attend accredited universities are usually eligible for federal student loans and the course credits they earn generally transfer to other accredited institutions.

Picking a degree program

To determine if a degree program fits your professional and personal interests, review the curriculum and course descriptions in university web sites and course catalogs. Do they offer courses in subjects of interest to you?

To learn more about whether a program might be good for you, ask about the faculty's industry experience and the scope and focus of their research. Do they have the appropriate advanced degrees for what they teach? Find out where the professors got their degrees. If all or most of them graduated from the same online university you are considering, this is a red flag, suggesting their academic credentials are weak. A real university will have teachers who have graduated from many different schools.

How students apply what they learn to their fields of expertise and to their communities are also strong indicators of a program's value. Ask what employers, organizations and professional associations partner with or support the university. Talk to someone at the university and explain your educational goals and career plans. Whether you wish to advance your career, change careers, make a contribution to society or become more expert in your field, be sure the program you choose will get you there. One way to find out is to learn how the  university's alumni are doing. Alumni success or lack of it reflects the quality of a university and its programs. Ask for examples of how alumni are using the knowledge they gained in their professional and personal lives.

If the university accepts everyone who applies and can afford the cost, be suspicious. A real university will require each student to meet appropriate admissions requirements.

Online teaching is different

Make sure any online universities you are considering know how to deliver and support online courses and that you have the technology you need to take them. Do the faculty members know how to guide the classroom experience to ensure learning objectives are achieved? Are your computer and Internet connection up to the task? Assignments are typically posted online and discussions take place as threaded postings. Most online courses require students to log in and contribute to discussions a certain number of times each week. Many courses let you log in any time, anywhere as long as you meet the weekly course requirements.

What type of student support services are available? How responsive are instructors to student inquiries? What opportunities are there to interact with fellow students? This interaction enables students to gain knowledge and understanding from others with a wide variety of geographic, cultural and professional perspectives. The most effective courses, especially for adult learners with years of work experience, are those in which students gain the insights and perspectives of everyone in the class.

Can you afford it?

Though attending an online university allows you to live where you do currently so you won't pay anything extra for living expenses while you study, there will be charges for books, tuition and fees. Find out what other expenses there will be, if any, to be sure you can afford your studies. Ask if financial aid is available, as some schools offer it to online learners.

Note that tuition and fees at online universities are often higher than what is charged at their campus-based counterparts. However, these schools offer personalized support and a convenient and flexible format geared for the adult learner. If a university's tuition and fees are significantly less expensive than other online schools, double check on its accreditation to be sure it is legitimate.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Searching For College Grants The Easy Way

There are a number of tips to make searching for college grants a little easier. The first and probably the most important piece of advice is to apply for as many college grants as you can. The more you apply for, the greater your chances are of receiving some. You could end up with enough college grants to cover all of your tuition fees and maybe more.

It is important to apply for college grants from as many different sources as possible. The most common type of college grants are federal grants or those from the colleges themselves but you should also try looking for other organisations and companies that offer grants and apply for those too.

A great source of information for college grants is the financial aid office of the college that you are going to attend. Your local library will also have a wealth of information available. Another source is, of course, the internet. You will find lots of sites offering information on college grants for free. Don’t be scammed into paying for a service guaranteeing to secure you college grants as these are not legitimate.

There are so many different types of college grants available that there is sure to be some that you are eligible for, even if you don’t think so to begin with. No matter what your financial circumstances are you can still be awarded grants to help pay for textbooks and living expenses. Try looking for specific college grants that match the course you want to take.

You may be surprised at just who offers college grants. Sometimes there are companies and organisations in your home town that would be happy to give financial assistance but a student has never asked. It is worth speaking to business associates of your family and friends about college grants too as they may know other possible sources. There is no harm in asking whether a firm does offer college grants or not – the worst they can say is no.

Every student would love to be given enough money to pay for everything but the reality is that a large number of college grants offered are only for a relatively small proportion of college fees and expenses. Don’t ignore these smaller grants. The chances are that the small ones have less competition for them and you could well end up with a lot of seemingly worthless college grants that add up to be a decent amount of money.

It is important to start your search for any available grants as early as you can. That way you can get ahead of the competition and you will also have more time to apply for the maximum number of college grants possible.

Monday, 30 May 2011

Scholarships for Graduate Students

After a few years in the working world, many graduates find that they just can't advance any farther in their careers without having additional qualifications and credentials. Higher education is so accessible these days that a Bachelor's degree doesn't always bring the prestige and opportunities that it once did. This is particularly true in high technology areas, the sciences and business management.

You are probably going to have to earn a Master's degree or a Doctorate in order to move up the corporate ladder, become a tenured teacher, or get a high-paying job in any number of other fields.

Graduate school costs a lot of money, and if you are still trying to pay off previous school loans how can you possibly get a Master's degree without acquiring a lot of additional debt? One way is to find and apply for scholarships for graduate students.

You might not even have been aware that there are special scholarships available for graduate students. Most people think that scholarships only exist only for undergraduate students, but that's not the case at all.

Many scholarships exist for graduate students and work in the same way that they do for undergrads, except that the awards are specifically intended to fund a Master's degree, law degree, doctorate program, and similar advanced study endeavors. Often these are paid by large companies and corporations but rarely are strings attached relating to future work requirements.

Depending on the size of the award you win, you can either subsidize a portion of your tuition bill or be able to pay for everything and attend school on that coveted full scholarship. 

Finding a scholarship as a graduate students can however pose some problems. The availability of scholarships depends on the subject to be studied and not all awards are advertised through the usual channels. It can take hours of research to come up with just a couple of leads that you could potentially qualify for. This discourages many people and a lot of awards go unclaimed as a result.

That is actually good news for you because, if you are determined, it means there sometimes isn't much competition for a lesser-known scholarship. You will therefore have a better chance of winning an award and making grad school more affordable. But if other people can't find out about these lucrative scholarships, how can you? Well, the easiest way is to register with a company that matches your qualifications to existing awards.

There are a number companies that perform this service for a fee, and you can find most of them online. Though the specific services and fees differ depending on which company you sign up with, you'll generally have two separate options.

First, you can sign up with a company that will personally work with you to find potential scholarships that you can apply for. You will have to fill out an online questionnaire detailing your academic and career accomplishments, as well as your intended field of study and perhaps some personal information such as age, gender, and ethnicity.

These personal questions are important because some scholarships for graduate students are restricted to certain ethnic groups or possibly only women may be eligible for the award.

Once the company has your information, a specialist will then begin the process of matching you to award opportunities. You can then decide which awards you want to apply for.

The second option, at a much lower cost, is to sign up with a company that simply gives you access to a searchable database containing thousands of scholarships for graduate students. You can tweak your searches in various ways to yield different results This gives you greater flexibility in browsing through potential awards.

If you want to get the most out of your career, then grad school is probably the way for you to go. You can take steps now to help defray the high cost of tuition by registering with a company that will alert you to available scholarships for graduate students. You can win a significant amount of money towards your education that you will never have to repay, so check out some of these sites today.

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Scholarships, Fellowships and Government Grants, Oh My!

Nearly every student is eligible to receive free funding for his or her education expenses. Both the U.S. Federal and State Governments, as well as private organizations, offer free money to assist students with paying for a college education.

This is money that never has to be repaid! These free funds come in the form of Scholarships, Fellowships, Internships and also Government Grants. In this article, we will clear up some confusion about what these are and how you can use them to pay for your education.

Your first step should be to obtain a FAFSA document (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). You can acquire one of these applications from the college you plan to attend or, online by following the steps at: http://www.fafsa.ed.gov

You will want to fully complete and send in this document by the deadline. For future reference, you will need to do this every year to continue to remain eligible for government funded financial aid. This single application is the key to numerous federally funded programs. Once your application is processed, you will receive a statement in the mail that lets you know how much funding you are eligible for.

If you find out that the amount of funding you qualify for still doesn't meet your needs, you can pursue additional private and government grants, scholarships and other programs. You can search online for for student grants and scholarships that you may also qualify for. This is often a tedious task, but careful research can uncover some excellent opportunities.

What is the difference between a Scholarship, Fellowship and a Grant?

Scholarships & Fellowships - Scholarships and fellowships are very similar, the term fellowship is generally applied to post graduate studies, while scholarship generally defines undergraduate awards. Scholarships can be funded with either public or private moneys. Oftentimes, you must qualify for a scholarship by having good grades and SAT scores. There are also scholarships that award students for their excellence in sports. You will find that there are also many unusual scholarships and fellowships available that cater to students with various other qualifications.

Government Grants - Government grants for college are government funds set aside to assist people in raising funds for school. There are numerous government grants that students can take advantage of, in conjunction with scholarships to enable you to pay for college. Your best asset here is the FAFSA document, that we discussed earlier.

As you can see, government grants, scholarships and more are available to help you pay for college. All you need to do is due diligence, a bit of paperwork and perhaps some research and you will uncover more funding options than you knew existed.

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Practical Guidelines to Writing Successful College Essays and Term Papers

Research is the backbone of any writing and the sources that you use for your research are equally important. Primary sources include for example, newspaper cuttings, interviews and any source that quotes directly from for example historic witness accounts. These are often considered more valuable than secondary sources. Secondary sources, are as their name suggests, second-hand accounts of events. For example, a history book written by an author using primary sources to interpret an historical event.

Your use of varied sources of research will enable you to see the weaknesses and strengths of your argument. Your paper, in effect should be a response to a debate proposal - for example, “this house believes: that dieting does not work”. You should in your research always be aware of what arguments the opposition are likely to put forward, so that you are responding to these arguments in your writing. For example, the response to the proposal could be, “Weight Watchers is a successful organisation because its members lose weight.” The weakness in the argument might be, “but, how many members successfully keep the pounds off?” just as an audience listening to a debate will have doubts about your argument, so too will the reader, therefore you should always lay out a response to these doubts and expose them as incorrect. You can do this by using quotations from expert sources for example. Using a variety of sources will ensure you present a balanced argument and that you obtain reliable information upon which to base your arguments.

Before you even begin to write your paper you should plan what points you want to make. Planning your paper is vital. It is a true saying that– “if you fail to plan – you plan to fail”. Once you have an idea of the direction you wish to steer the ship, you can then look forward to enjoying the journey! Your plan should specify distinct points that you want to make in a logical sequence. These points should form the basic structure as paragraphs for your paper. Introducing each concept to the reader, developing it and destroying any possible doubts about your arguments will keep the reader interested and help them to see your point of view clearly.

Every piece of writing needs to lead the reader gently into the subject area by way of an introduction and college papers are no different. You would not expect a friend to tell you the punch line of a joke without build up otherwise the joke would fall flat. Equally, if you fail to lead the reader in by setting the scene for the rest of your discussion using an introduction, your college paper may well suffer the same fate and the reader may not want to continue reading. The introduction should aim to summarise and engage the reader.

An introduction is vital when writing a college paper for several reasons. Firstly, a competent introduction to a piece dispenses with the assumption that the reader is aware of the subject matter. It also gives them a flavour of what to expect in the development and helps the reader to attune his thoughts to your style of writing. Most important of all, a good introduction should summarise the piece and give some idea of what the conclusion will be. Think of the introduction as a synopsis of the entire work, however long that work maybe. A successful introduction will explain to the reader what the paper is about and prepare them for the development of that idea or argument.

Think of the development section –the middle- of a college paper, as a way of convincing the reader of your argument. Decide what points you want to make. This is where your research comes in. Your research will strengthen and inform your own views and opinions. Your job now is to apply the research to back up your arguments effectively.

The conclusion to your paper should remind the reader why you hold particular opinions and the reasons for them and give them a second chance to agree or disagree with you based on the arguments and facts that you present.

In summary:

- Research the topic

- Be critical during your research - Read with a question in mind, always be critical of the secondary source material that you read. If it is not direct “from the horses mouth”, then question the writer’s motives for holding their opinion, are they biased? For example, is a dieting magazine a proponent of diets, because that is their raison d’etre?

-  Brainstorm - Brainstorming with friends helps to clarify your opinions, if you can argue a subject aloud, you are more likely to be able to argue it on paper.

- Plan your work in logical points

- Write the main points of your conclusion before you develop the paper, that way if you have a map of where you are trying to get to, you will be able to drive there more quickly.

- Use the points from your plan as paragraphs in your paper for each individual idea.

- Develop these points by explaining their rationale to the reader, justify them using your research and eliminate any opposing arguments by backing up yours with the facts not just opinions.

- If you are writing within time constraints of an examination and fail to complete the paper, you will get marks for planning your paper, because the examiner will be able to see that you understand the subject.

- Use an appropriate style for your audience – that means adjusting your language and tone, sentence length and vocabulary to suit the audience.

- Always introduce the topic- Summarise what you are going to tell them: -

- Do not make assumptions - Do not assume that the reader is familiar with the subject matter

- Be aware of your audience:-be aware of whom you are trying to convince and tailor your argument to that audience. This should be reflected in your language and tone and ultimately your style of writing.

- Do your research – you cannot expect to competently argue your point, if you do not have strong facts and opinion with which to back it up.

- Develop your argument- use the research sources and quotations you have gathered to develop and substantiate your arguments.

- Be aware of your own prejudices and make a conscious effort to be objective.

- Conclude the piece by summarising your original thesis, or idea.

- Check the writing for grammatical errors and spelling mistakes as this can let your writing down and irritate the reader.

- Read the paper thoroughly, aloud if possible and make amendments, do not be afraid to shorten the paper if this means that your paper becomes more succinct.

- Remember - the best writing speaks to the reader and wins the reader over almost without them realising it!

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Paying for College - Scholarships and Federal Aid

Well the weekend has come and gone, and I still have no students seeking advice. Please email me your questions, I’m begging you! It’s partly my fault because I’m still slacking on advertising this blog. There’s a lesson for all the students out there. Don’t slack. I slacked a lot of my way through college. It works for the time being, but later on it will come back to haunt you. Try to instill solid work methods now while you still have a chance, or else when you’re twenty-something and working a full-time job, you will only think about ways to get you work done without actually working.

On to today’s topic: Paying for College. Getting the funds for college and living expenses is one of the biggest challenges you will face, perhaps even tougher than getting into college. If you slacked your way through high school and ended up with poor grades, your chances of a scholarship are not as high. But hopefully you listened to your teachers and parents and did well in school.

In Florida we have what is called a Florida Bright Futures Scholarship. Based on your grades, SAT/ACT scores, and community service, every graduating senior attending college can receive a 75% tuition scholarship or a 100% + books scholarship. Florida is awesome when it comes to providing every student the means to attend college. I am not sure how other states work, but I would imagine each state has similar scholarship programs.

Scholarships are what every student needs. Tuition can be very expensive depending on where you go to school and how many classes you take. Out of state schools will cost a student more money. Private schools will also be more expensive. Scholarships give students the ability to attend colleges on someone else’s dime. Pretty sweet deal huh?

Not all scholarships are based on financial situation like most people think. Generally, students who are in need of financial aid will be given a high priority when it comes to winning a scholarship; however, this is not always the case. Don’t be shy when asking about scholarships. Consult your school counselors, parents, teachers, and friends. You’d be surprised that the company your parents work for probably offer scholarships. Even if it is only for $1000, that is still free money you can’t pass up.

Scholarships are not limited to incoming freshman either. Current sophomores, juniors, and seniors are eligible for scholarships. Often upper level students are awarded scholarships to further their study in their specific major, such as Education majors. Visit your school’s financial aid office for more information.

One of the best, if not the best, resources for scholarship information is FastWeb. Every student needs to visit them. Yes, even you seniors. There are thousands of scholarships that go un-awarded every year. So get off this web page (when you’re done reading of course) and go get one.


Another method of getting money for college is from Uncle Sam himself. No, not your mom’s half brother that you only see on Memorial Day barbeques. I’m talking about the United States Government. The federal government gives out free money to college students. It’s called FAFSA, which stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. FAFSA grants are determined by how much money your parents make. You have to fill out a form in your school’s financial aid department or online via their website, www.fafsa.ed.gov. Every student needs to do this. Even if your parents make $500,000 a year, there is still a chance you are eligible for a free grant. A grant is money you do not have to pay back. Ever.

Let’s say your parents give you $2000 a year for college. You use this for tuition, books, rent, and food (and with all these expenses plus more, $2000 does not go that far). Let’s say you have filled out your FAFSA forms and are given $1000. This is awesome! But wait, it’s been two years and now your little sister is going to college and your parents can’t afford to give you $2,000 each. So they split it up and you each get $1000. What a bummer!! Or is it? FAFSA adjusts your grant according to not only what your parents make, but how many siblings you have in college. The more brothers and sisters you have going to college, the more money you get.

The most dreaded, but probably most popular, method of paying for college are student loans. Almost all students have them, so don’t feel bad if you are forced to get one. If you’ve taken a finance or economic class you’ve probably heard the terms “good debt” and “bad debt”. Victoria’s Secret credit card debt is “bad debt”, while student loans are “good debt”. Student loans offer the lowest interest rates of any type of loans. Often they give you a grace period after graduation where not a single cent is due. Student loans can be paid off over a long period of time with fixed interest rates.

Subsidized student loans are loans you get through your school’s financial aid department that the government pays the interest for. Not a bad option either if you are in need of tuition money. Visit your bank or financial aid office for more information on student loans. All banks offer them, so go ask today.

Finally, the last method of paying for college I’m going to discuss is through good old hard labor. Getting a job can help pay the bills. Waitressing, bartending, retail, and tutoring are all prime examples of college jobs. If you aren’t into working at a restaurant or mall, visit your student career resource center. Jobs on campus are given out to students who are financially needy. The best thing about working on campus is they will fit your work schedule around your classes and tests. You will never have to miss class or work. One of the disadvantages of working on campus is the pay is generally low. You will make a lot more money working at Chili’s than you will your school’s bookstore.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Online Bachelor Degree: Lower Unemployment and Higher Pay

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, unemployment rates fall and earnings rise for people who have more education. Not exactly rocket science — but if you're a high school graduate working a 40-hour week, getting a bachelor's degree may seem nearly impossible. Work, family and financial obligations don't leave much time to attend a college or university full time. But a phenomenon called distance learning now makes it possible to pursue an online bachelor degree from the comfort of your own home.

In a nutshell, dozens of accredited colleges and universities now offer online bachelor degree programs that require students to spend little or no time on campus. The nation's largest accredited private university, the University of Phoenix, offers online bachelor degree programs in business, technology, health care, education, and social and behavioral science. According to the
latest figures (2002) from the Department of Education website, the University of Phoenix had more than 107,000 students enrolled in a variety of classroom and online programs.

Getting a degree from an accredited online university can significantly impact your earning profile and reduce your chances of becoming unemployed. When the Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Quarterly (Fall 2004) compared the median weekly earnings and unemployment rate for full-time workers aged 25 or over, degree holders clearly fared better. While a high school grad earned $554 weekly and faced a national unemployment rate of 5.5%, the holder of a bachelor degree made $900 a week with an unemployment rate of only 3.3 percent.

If figures like these make you eager to explore an online bachelor degree, you'll find links in the resource box at the bottom of this article than can help advance your career. But before you start clicking, here's a three-question checklist that will help you decide if an online bachelor degree is right for you:

1. Do you meet the academic requirements?
Online universities have admission requirements that you'll need to meet before you begin your studies. Certificate and online bachelor degree programs require a high school diploma or GED certificate.

2. What are your goals?
Write down your goals and then research your options with these goals in mind. List the criteria you're looking for in an online college or university and then determine which school is the best match for your goals. All online universities provide free, detailed information about their degree programs. There's also free online access to enrolment counsellors, so take advantage of these no-cost services.

3. Can you afford an online degree?
While the cost of an online bachelor degree is often just half that of attending a brick-and-mortar university, it still pays to make sure you can afford tuition, books and other fees. You may find that you don't have to cover the entire cost of your online education alone. At many online universities, students receive all or part of their tuition from their employer. There are still other financial options available, too, including federal grant and loan programs with low interest rates.

Remember, data show that unemployment rates fall and earnings rise for people who have more education. So, get learning to start earning and investigate whether an online bachelor degree is right for you!

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Introductory course on E-learning

The scope of this introductory article in e-learning methods and practices is to provide the readers with the necessary knowledge to develop e-learning courses. Developers of e-learning courses should be able to:

1) Understand in which cases e-learning constitutes an appropriate educational method
2) Define the educational needs of their learning groups
3) Write distance education materials
4) Choose the adequate ways of communication between students and tutors as well as between students themselves
5) Become effective e-tutors
6) Provide student support, when necessary
7) Assess the students in an effective way
8) Evaluate the effectiveness of their courses


The duration of a course, as well as its exact contents, depend on the educational needs of the specific group of learners. Therefore, the first step in the designing of the course will be to identify the specific needs of the learners. A detailed questionnaire should be distributed to the target group and their answers will be measured qualitatively and quantitatively. The questionnaire will measure the IT level of the learners, their previous experience in e-learning or other distance education methods, their learning and communication patterns, etc. Those answers will form the basis of the course’s planning.

Α bibliographical research in each country’s social, political, educational and technological background is also essential in order to understand the prospective learners and plan a program that fits their needs as well as their customs. Unfortunately, as Robinson (1995, p.225) pinpoints, a significant amount of research and studies based on the subject of student support and communication in e-courses has been developed on the basis of an analogous cultural context: the formal, institutionally-based higher education of the developed world. The imposition of this context has created a false “norm” and has undervalued the importance of diversity in the development of open and distance educational courses.

The aim of this research will be to identify the context-specific factors, which shape the learners’ needs, mainly:

*The geographical distribution of learners
*The technological infrastructure
*The economical capabilities
*The socio-cultural diversity

The study and analysis of the bibliography and the questionnaires will enable the educational team to develop a course, with respect to the diversity of the specific learning community. The findings will be used particularly in the designing of the communication methods and patterns and the system of student support.

The course will be designed in order to provide high levels of interactivity between learners. The students will have a lot of opportunities to communicate with each other in both synchronous and asynchronous ways, exchange viewpoints and, the most important, undertake team-work projects. One of the most significant advantages of the online distributed courses is the ability to bring people from diverse cultures closer by creating multicultural learning communities. Thus, the collaboration between students will add value to the students’ learning experience, since it will offer them the chance to view the world from a wider perspective.      

The projects and assessment exercises that the students will undertake will be practical, in forms of realistic scenarios. For example, in the thematic field “Understanding your learners” (see below), the students may be asked to draw up a list, of which elements are important in knowing their learners and cast interviews on a real group of learners. Since the prospective students of this course are already working in the field of education, they won’t encounter any difficulty in accessing a sample.   

Thematic fields of the course

The suggestive thematic fields of the course are:

1) The historical context of distance education and e-learning
2) The designing of e-learning material: text and multimedia material
3) The communication between groups of learners
  a.    The pedagogical necessity of interactivity between learners
  b.    Forms of communication: synchronous, asynchronous communication and the technological means to achieve it
4) The role of the e-tutors
5) The support of students in e-learning environments
6) The students’ assessment and self-assessment
7) The evaluation of the e-courses

Monday, 16 May 2011

Interested in Learning at Home? Consider an Online Nursing Degree College

The Internet has created a number of ways to make our lives more convenient. One important, and growing way, is through online education. This method of learning is extremely popular, and many respected, quality schools offer online learning options. If you are interested in learning at home, consider an online nursing degree college to prepare you for a career in health care.

The Forecast

The health care field is one area where jobs are expected to continue to grow. The medical field offers employment opportunities for many different personality types. Within nursing, there are many choices as well. People interested in the nursing field can incorporate a desire to help others with an interest in technology, medical advances, and management. A nurse may desire to work in a maternity wing in a hospital, in a hospice program helping people die in peace, or anywhere in between where quality health care is needed.

Salaries for nurses vary by degree, but start in the $30,000 range and go up. If you are interested in learning at home, consider an online nursing degree college that offers any type of nursing degree, from a basic entry-level degree such as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) to a PhD in health care. For those wanting a nursing degree option with a lot of flexibility, a Registered Nurse (RN) option is one that will allow graduates to work in a range of settings with a higher level of responsibilities. Master's programs in nursing are abundant online, and provide an excellent opportunity to further one's career.

Learning at Home

If you are interested in learning at home, consider an online nursing degree to enter an exciting and growing career in health care. Online programs are convenient, of high quality, and provide an opportunity for learning to those who do not live near a school offering a desired nursing program. Educational opportunities online are demanding and rigorous, and you will leave with a high quality education. With some research, you can find the perfect online program to meet your needs.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

How to Overcome the High Prices of College Textbooks

Every year students require various college textbooks for their classes, spending a small fortune to purchase them. High standards should be improved in the business deal of purchasing new and used books so that all students would benefit of improved methods of learning. In recent years, college bookstores have begun to lose their monopoly over the market, generating pronounced imbalances regarding the average costs of most study materials.  

Thousands of students who will soon head off to college campuses nationwide are beginning to realize that it takes quite a bit of capital these days to buy textbooks. In the past two decades, college textbooks prices have increased considerably, at twice the rate of inflation. According to government estimates, students and their families have spent more than $6 billion on new and used textbooks over the period of the academic year 2003-2004. During 2002 and 2004, the average college student spent up to $900 a year for textbooks, around 3 percent more than in the last seven years. Recent studies have also revealed the fact that the average student nowadays spends about $100 on a single curriculum-oriented new book and about $65 on a similar used book.

Fortunately, there are various high-standard educational institutions that are currently striving to overcome such topical issues regarding the low affordability of curricular study materials. The University of Phoenix for instance, has corrected such problems by modifying the general curriculum and preparing a lighter course load for attending students. By replacing most traditional textbooks with e-books, the University of Phoenix has become the first “textbook-less” college in the country.

Highly skilled students joining selected programs nowadays benefit for Microsoft's e-book reader software. However, in order to obtain unlimited access to interactive materials and up-to-date texts online, students still have to pay a per-course fee. In present, the University of Phoenix has almost 95,500 students at more than 100 locations across the country, currently striving to integrate all students in the e-book-oriented study program.

In order to achieve a better position on the market, the great majority of booksellers have recently started to sell textbooks at a considerable discount off the cover price. Furthermore, special areas have been created in order to improve the selling of textbooks on the Internet. Another great source for college books are the online used bookstores, which help students find the textbooks of their interest at considerably lower prices.

Students must be very careful when closing a deal on the Web. Considering the fact that textbook prices greatly vary on the Internet, students are advised to closely analyze all possible alternatives before choosing a certain bookseller over another. It is important to note that the purchase price should not be the only considered aspect when buying textbooks online; students should also factor in shipping costs and delivery time before deciding upon buying their desired textbooks on the Internet.

In order to fight the high cost of college textbooks you should double-check for the correct 10-digit International Standard Book Number, or ISBN. This number is situated above the bar code on the textbook's back cover or title page. When you are purchasing online you should check for the ISBN along with the book title, author and edition.

If you simply can’t afford new textbooks, you should consider purchasing used textbooks, as they are considerably less expensive than their new counterparts. You can purchase a used textbook at about 75 percent of the retail price of a new textbook. Prices vary anywhere from $10 to $80, with an approximate average of $40. Due to the fact that used books are a scarce and limited resource, often being sold out by the beginning of the school year, students may need to shop early in order to obtain their required used books. In spite of this fact, used textbooks are still a reliable, cost-effective alternative to new textbooks, allowing students to spend less money for their education.