Online reading assignment: helpful/unhelpful Midterm 1 astronomy study tips

Astronomy 210, fall semester 2019
Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA

Students have a weekly online reading assignment (hosted by SurveyMonkey.com), where they answer questions based on reading their textbook, material covered in previous lectures, opinion questions, and/or asking (anonymous) questions or making (anonymous) comments. Full credit is given for completing the online reading assignment before next week's lecture, regardless if whether their answers are correct/incorrect. Selected results/questions/comments are addressed by the instructor at the start of the following lecture.

How difficult do you think this midterm will be?
Very difficult.   ***** [5]
Difficult.   ******************** [20]
Neutral.   *********** [11]
Easy.   * [1]
Very easy.   [0]

In general, I am (or will be) prepared for the material covered on this midterm.
Strongly disagree.   [0]
Disagree.   *** [3]
Neutral.   ************ [12]
Agree.   ********************* [21]
Strongly agree.   * [1]

In general, I understand (or will understand) the basic concepts of the material covered on this midterm.
Strongly disagree.   [0]
Disagree.   * [1]
Neutral.   ********* [9]
Agree.   *********************** [23]
Strongly agree.   **** [4]

Describe something notable that either helped or did not help with studying for this midterm. Selected comments may be discussed in class. (Graded for completion.)

The following are all of the student responses to this question, verbatim and unedited.
"Showing up helps...most of the time."

"Quiz review helps."

"The quizzes we have took are helpful use them to study."

"Example quizzes."

"Something that helps is having the quiz packets of all the optional questions that might be on the test."

"The problem-solving stuff we did in class and going over old notes."

"I studied the planets and their orders a lot."

"Flashcards does help me best!! I make a flashcard for each question from the quiz packets and that typically helps me a lot."

"What helps is printing out blank copies of the quizzes we've previously taken, then retaking them without reviewing any notes or looking at the right answers. It really tests you on what you remember and helps make studying more efficient since you'll be able to focus more on what you don't know."

"Knowing the composition of the telescope and its contribution to the visibility of the sky."

"Student examples of writing or answers are super-helpful to understand concepts. Also, sketches of certain concepts have been very helpful."

"Personally, being able to see diagrams and pictures of what were learning about helps me a lot. I am a visual learner, so being able to see what I'm learning about really helps me grasp the information. what helps for me is when something is explained more than once."

"Previous quizzes seem to cover most of the topics and I feel should help with the midterm that's coming up. I'm a very bad test taker and need tips on ways to study for test and obtain the information."

"The snowboarder's horizon is always east and west."

"Going over all the material in class helps to a lot."

"Re-writing important notes on a subject that is confusing."

"Definitely reviewing all the charts we have made throughout the semester this far. Make time to study the next two days. 🤘🏼"

"Doing an in-class assignment about the material helps a lot, it's like a preview of the test. Something that has been helpful for me when studying are the illustration that we have in our notes."

"It makes it easier to visualize and understand what's going on with certain subjects when it's needed."

"It frustrates me that the answers to practice quiz questions are not made available. The book doesn't offer such either. In math, answers are available, so you try try try until you get it."

"Reviewing all in-class activities is a good way to help review all of the subjects that we have learned."

"Keeping and reviewing all your tests definitely helps because then you know which areas you really need to focus on."

"Study while playing instrumental music; it helps focus my mind & block out distractions."

"Read textbook assignments, ask questions and go over class notes."

"Taking time to study/ go over material will help you get a higher grade for the midterm. actually studying, most people say they do but don't."

"Re-reading notes really works for me."

"Studying helps as it allows me to go over everything that we have covered. I also like to study in a quiet area with no noise, I get very irritated when people disturb my sphere of studying."

"I feel like going though the practice questions helps me a lot because then I'm able to apply my basic understanding on solving questions that I will see on the exam. But then also being able to go to the embedded tutor's hours really does help because if you don't understand something then he can help explain it to you."

"I think not doing anything doesn't help... doing the homework and asking questions in class will help I think."

"Reviewing class notes, previous quizzes, and presentations seem to help a lot more than focusing on the textbook readings, especially if you're more of a visual person."

"Go over your quizzes and review your mistakes. Do all homework assignments. Show up to lectures--things sure do get clarified."

"The quizzes are key!"

"Having our quizzes handy, and filling out the quiz packets you post online. Also, the in-class activities are helpful."

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