How to Succeed in Mr. T’s Course:

Advice from Former Students

After the final exam, I ask students to provide a written response to this question:

What advice would you give to next semester's students on how to succeed in this course? Please give an honest and candid answer. To ensure anonymity, do not put your name on the paper.

These are some of the responses from previous semesters (exactly as written):

bulletThe journey you are about to embark on is far from ordinary. This class will tax, exhaust, exasperate, amuse, delight, and fascinate you. Be prepared for a demanding course and an excellent teacher. Take very detailed notes (Mr. T never says anything unimportant), recopy them frequently (especially before an exam), and start studying for exams at least 4 days in advance. Don’t skimp on study or review time—it will definitely cost you. Above all, enjoy and immerse yourself! You’re in for an exciting ride.

P.S. Bring along a sense of humor and plenty of Hershey’s Kisses.

bulletAlways take notes!! Follow Mr. T closely and never miss class. A good way to study is by re-copying your notes. Hey—it may be time consuming, but it works! Oh yeah, if he offers extra credit, do it!
bulletTake good notes, rewrite them, ask questions, read the chapters in the book (her wrote it, you know!) before they are discussed, during a discussion and after. Study for the test in advance with the Online Study Guide and stick to the material in your notes most of all. Look and study diagrams that are mentioned. Know your map locations.
bulletTake complete and precise notes. Do not shorten words and then not read over your notes (you might not remember what the word is supposed to be!).
bulletNever miss class. Take detailed notes—everything, even if it doesn’t seem important.
bulletStudy your notes a little bit everyday, not all the night before the test. Study your geographic locations in the same matter because there will be geographic questions on ALL of the tests! Finally, take the lab along with the lecture, it helps A LOT.
bulletKeep up in class. There are many exams in this class which are very easy if you keep up. However, when you miss class, you will be missing a lot of important information. If you get notes from another student, make sure they take copious notes, otherwise you WILL BE SCREWED!
bulletPersonally, I very rarely read my book; however, I completed all assignments, some extra credit, and read back over the notes…sometimes. I will most likely get a B. I should have read more of the book!
bulletAttendance is key, if you miss class get notes from classmates. The tests are very detailed and specific, so study your notes, the online study guide, and the book really well. Study for the final early, try not to procrastinate because the final was not easy. Take advantage of extra credit assignments, because chances are you’ll need the points.
bulletPlan on working harder in this class than you ever have. Read the entire chapter of all the topics discusses. Do the online study guide quizzes. Do all assignments and you must be prepared to study A LOT! Good Luck!!
bulletStudy your notes, rewrite them for the tests, show up to class and listen, and just enjoy. Mr. T is a great teacher, take advantage of it!
bulletRead the required chapters of the text. Do all the internet assignments. Take even more detailed notes than what’s on his presentations. Try not to give the instructor a hard time.
bulletWhatever you do, DON’T MISS CLASS! Every day matters—if you miss a lecture or video you will definitely miss questions on the exams. Good Luck!
bulletTake advantage of the online study guide. It is a fun class. Make sure that you take the lab and do all the Internet Assignments and all the extra credit. The final is hard!
bulletPay attention to detail! Don’t assume anything. Arrive on time, stay the whole class, and pay attention to the material presented. Participate in class discussions—when appropriate. Don’t talk in class (it’s rude, you’ll miss an important item, and Mr. Trujillo doesn’t like it). Leave if you think this will be an easy, fun A! Stay if you wish to learn about our oceans and work hard and earn a fun A! Don’t arbitrarily argue with Mr. Trujillo—he is almost always right (he checked it first). Have fun—this is an awesome learning experience.
bulletDo all available extra credit! It helps! Take good notes, which will not be hard because Mr. T is an excellent teacher, he really knows his stuff. And finally, sit back and enjoy the class. You will learn more about the ocean than you probably ever wanted to know.
bulletDo the work: Internet assignments, reports, etc. Do the questions at the end of each chapter and review notes. If Mr. T writes it on the board--know it. Keep an open mind--you will be amazed at all there is to know. It's exciting--be prepared to be amazed.
bulletPay attention. Take good notes. Ask questions if you are not sure. Listen to Mr. T., he wrote the book and knows everything! You're going to love this class so don't drop it!
bulletDo the online study guides. There are exact questions from the real exams.
bulletRead the book, do all Internet Assignments, and extra credit. Pay attention in class. Use the online study thing that comes with the book. Read and look at all of the pictures in the book. Have fun!
bulletFor me, this class has been an amazing experience. Stay on his good side, turn off your cell phone, do the online study guide, and actually look at his book (which I have heard more about than I wanted to know).
bulletMr. T is an awesome teacher--I'll tell you now that you WILL enjoy the course--as long as you take the time to at least skim through the book. When he says something over and over--no matter how dumb it sounds, REMEMBER IT! Use the Websites he gives you--seriously, 'cause it will help. Get involved and have some fun. The lab helps a lot, too.
bulletDefinitely review the Online Study Guide. Laugh at his jokes, they are actually really funny. Pay attention in class. RELAX. Ask lots of questions if you don't understand. Enjoy it, you might learn something. Mr. T is a great teacher but he does expect you to use your brain.

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