New Beginnings: A Guide for Adult Learners / Edition 2

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This friendly, accessible, and supportive guide to achieving college success helps users assess their own strengths as a learner, better manage their time, hone good study skills, and write effective college papers. The volume outlines all aspects of becoming a student as an adult such as assessing learning needs and course requirements, identifying college resources, strategies for managing time and stress, developing note-taking, studying, and test-taking skills and strategies for reading, research and writing. For adults interested in pursuing a college education.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780130607386
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 4/20/2001
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 156
  • Product dimensions: 6.92 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 0.31 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Becoming a Student.
2. Assessing Learning Needs and Course Requirements.
3. Identifying College Resources.
4. Strategies for Managing Time and Stress.
5. Developing Note-Taking, Studying, and Test-Taking Skills.
6. Strategies for Reading.
7. Strategies for Research.
8. Strategies for Writing.
Appendix A: Grammar Brushup.
Appendix B: Math Brushup.
Appendix C: Financing Your Education.
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I've taught adult learners and returning students for 12 years. On the first day of class, I always ask my students to write a letter to me introducing themselves as learners. I want to know what educational and life experiences they bring to the classroom. I ask them to tell me why they've decided to return to school. What do they hope to achieve in my class? What do I need to learn about them to help them achieve their goals?

These introductions tell me that most adult students are in college to better prepare themselves for the workforce. They may be pursuing a new career or shaking advancement in their current career. Whatever their goals, this book equips students with skills for continuous learning so that they can obtain and keep a better job.

This book also gives readers what they need to do well in college. I've discovered that adult students often have a feeling of doubt about their ability to succeed in college. If they have been out of school for some time, they worry that their skills are rusty. If they were unsuccessful in past academic settings, they worry that they will repeat those experiences. Adult learners and returning students are concerned with managing time, honing good study skills, and learning to write successful college papers.

Although many programs offer advisors, workshops, and support services, noticed that what my students lacked was a helpful and reassuring guide to college success. New Beginnings is that guide. New Beginnings addresses the specific needs of adult learners and returning students.

The eight chapters in this book will help readers:

  • recognize how their lifeexperiences benefit them as students
  • assess their own strengths as learners
  • choose knowledgeably among the course offerings in their programs
  • a find the help they need when they need it
  • manage time and stress effectively
  • learn new study and test-taking skills
  • practice new reading strategies
  • engage in productive research
  • write successful college papers

New Beginnings is dedicated to all of my students who have worked so hard to achieve their goals; and to all of the adult students reading this book, who are returning to school to make a positive difference in their lives.


New Beginnings will help you build upon your life experiences and practice the new skills that will help you to become a successful student. Here is an overview of what you can expect from the rest of this book.

CHAPTER 1, BECOMING A STUDENT. As you begin your college career, this chapter helps you to identify your strengths as a student, set long-term goals, and learn to feel productive and comfortable in a class environment.

CHAPTER 2, ASSESSING LEARNING NEEDS AND COURSE REQUIREMENTS. Becoming a student means taking responsibility for your own learning. This chapter will give you some guidelines to help you assess your own learning style, establish productive relationships with your teachers, understand a college catalog and course syllabus, understand degree requirements, and choose appropriate courses. It helps you to evaluate your own learning style and to understand degree requirements. You'll learn the differences between types of courses (seminar, workshop, lecture) and find definitions of different disciplines.

CHAPTER 3, IDENTIFYING COLLEGE RESOURCES. Adult education programs often provide a wide range of support services for their students. This chapter outlines and defines those helpful sources so you will know where to find the support you may need during your college career.

CHAPTER 4, STRATEGIES FOR MANAGING TIME AND STRESS. Because adult students need to find time for school in their already busy lives, they need to develop strategies for coping with overload, burnout, and stress. This chapter offers ten hints for time management.

CHAPTER 5, DEVELOPING NOTE-TAKING, STUDYING, AND TEST-TAKING SKILLS. This chapter will help you develop the skills you need to take effective class notes, prepare for and take tests, and understand your grade.

CHAPTER 6, STRATEGIES FOR READING. Reading is the most crucial activity for any course. This chapter offers general rules for reading efficiently and helps you to develop useful strategies for reading a textbook, a theoretical book or article, fiction, and poetry.

CHAPTER 7, STRATEGIES FOR RESEARCH. How do you find information from a library? From the Internet? From interviews? From databases? This chapter gives you the basics of research, including hints for taking notes, documenting sources, and organizing material.

CHAPTER 8, STRATEGIES FOR WRITING. Frequently, writing is the most daunting challenge for adult learners. This chapter guides you through the writing process, offering helpful strategies for generating ideas, drafting, revising, and editing.

APPENDIX A, GRAMMAR BRUSHUP. A quick, painless brushup on the basic grammar you need for editing your own work is found in Appendix A.

APPENDIX B, MATH BRUSHUP. Appendix B is a helpful overview of the skills you need for college math.

APPENDIX C, FINANCING YOUR EDUCATION. A guide to college expenses and different ways to meet those expenses are found in Appendix C.


  • Instructor's Manual
  • ABC News/Prentice Hall Video Library Series
  • New York Times Supplement


My thanks to students Jayne Copley, Linda Karlsson Carter, Wendy Beth Russo, Robert Vilardi, Kimberly Parke, Hopis Colby, Robert J. Matthews, Cynthia Fowler, Keren R. McGinity, Clare Keller, and Susan Bell for their helpful responses. Thanks also to my assistant, Lisa Davis, for her creative and efficient help.

The following reviewers offered valuable feedback toward the development of this book: Tina Pitt, Heald College; Valerie De Angelis, Miami-Dade Community College; Kara L. Craig, University of Southern Mississippi; Glenda A. Belote, Florida International University; John C. Bennett, Jr., University of Connecticut; Nancy P Thompson, University of Georgia; Rosalie A. Vermette, Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis; Elizabeth T. Tice, University of `Phoenix; Ann L. Wolnick, University of Arizona; Charles Dahlstrom, Central b Missouri State University; John S. Nichol, Phoenix College; Bruce Thomas, Gendale Community College; Susan Deese-Roberts, University of New Mexico; K. Kelly, St. Cloud State University; Cynthia B. Leshin, XPLORA Internet Consulting, Training, and Publishing; Jean Beveridge, Johnson and Wales allege; Heather M. Kernen, University of Phoenix; Sandra L. Mickel, Borough of Manhattan Community College; and Cheryl Dorenbush, University of Phoenix.

A special thank you to Don Pierce, Heald College, who wrote the "Math Brushup" in Appendix B for this text.

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