Section Four: Success Strategies
Important Academic Policies
Learning the System
Attending college and managing your academic career can feel overwhelming and complicated, especially at first. Most students find they grow more comfortable with time and experience. They learn to adapt to a new vocabulary and more responsibility.
The best ways to quick-start your abilities are to:
- take Counseling 200, Orientation to College
- browse the Counseling Center's website which is full of useful information, and read their on-line student success seminar.
- familizae yourself with the Schedule of Classes carefully
- familiarize yourself with the De Anza College Catalog for the year you start, especially the sections which describe college policies and regulations, and those about general education requirements and your major's degree or certificate requirements. You may want to download those requirements for future reference.
- read this Handbook thoroughly
- ask questions of your teachers and counselors whenever you don’t understand something
- review the Academic Integrity and Student Success Senate Policy of 5/20/02 which describes in detail the expectations of faculty, students, and administration to mutually contribute to an educational environment that fosters academic integrity, defined "as a commitment, even in the face of adversity, to five fundamental values: honesty, trust, fairness, respect and responsibility."
Importance of Dates and Deadlines
Little happens automatically in college. Most often actions that affect your academic career must be initiated by you. When you have done something, it is best to follow up for confirmation that the action you wanted has taken place. If you submit something in writing or by email, be sure to keep a copy for yourself.
Pay close attention to deadlines which may apply. After deadlines pass, it may be more difficult or impossible to accomplish your objective.
Watch these deadline dates VERY carefully. Registering, adding, dropping or withdrawing from classes, paying for fees for registration, filing forms, applying for credit/no credit, for graduation, etc. all have published deadlines and procedures.
- The most critical dates are always in the Class Schedule on the De Anza website Academic Calendar, Important Dates and Deadlines.
- You may also watch around campus for posts of essential dates or be sure to read the weekly campus newspaper, La Voz.
- If you have provided an email address, you may receive email communications from the College or the DSS or EDC program. Be sure to read them, and don't overlook them in your "spam" or "junk" folder. If you aren't receiving emails, be sure to check with the DSS or EDC office to correct your email address or check change your computer setting redirect them from your "junk" to "incoming" mail folders.
Don’t let the “snooze, you lose” happen to you.
"The Paper Chase"
Even if you keep your computer records in order, a paper trail is still a good method to prevent misunderstandings and correct possible mistakes.
- Always keep copies of important documents, communications, receipts, and records.
- Check your grades in your courses and keep your graded work until after the quarter ends.
- Check your official grade /transcript after every quarter to ensure the grades are recorded correctly.
- Make a file labeled “Important De Anza Papers” and keep all college papers in permanent storage.
The “green sheet,” and/or a course syllabus will be handed out in each class at the beginning of the quarter. Always keep these for at least the quarter and become familiar with their contents, which will include at least:
- the instructor’s purpose and description of the course
- the required materials
- the attendance policy
- the grading policy
- contact information for the instructor
They may also list specifics of the course requirements, including a schedule and details about assignments and exams.