Resources on campus help students struggling with academics

Brittany Webb

Staff Writer

With syllabus week in the rearview mirror, the crunch is starting for Parkland College students.

While students can find different subjects challenging, there are many resources on campus to help students in a variety of academic areas.

Dr. Britt Carlson, a chemistry instructor at Parkland, says that doing example and practice problems is one of the best ways to keep up in science classes.

“Use the book as a source of practice problems and as a reference for navigating the problems and understanding the why and how behind the problems,” said Carlson.

The sciences can be different, however, in the way a student prepares for them. Val Mitev, anatomy and physiology instructor, says the most important thing in her field is to preview the material before it is taught in class so the material can be thought about in a deeper manner.

“Sit close to the teacher, listen carefully, and take detailed notes,” she said.

Brittany Rhed, in her third year of biological sciences, keeps up with her classes by constantly checking Cobra.

“I also jot down important dates and manage my time accordingly,” she said.

In science classes, it is key to show up for class, on time, and be ready to learn, according to Carlson.

“It is easy to get swept away if you miss a day,” said Carlson.

Mitev added help is always near-by.

“Don’t hesitate to ask questions -seek assistance immediately if you have a problem understanding.” she said.

Mitev also suggests getting involved in study groups and finding your own way to study is crucial when starting out or continuing in college.

“Read the assigned pages in your textbook, and make a good use of the additional resources that come with it.  Discuss the material with others, work with a partner or form a study group – draw pictures, make flashcards and flow charts, quiz each other, participate in discussions,” Mitev said.

Students can have a hard time staying motivated in their school work, especially after one bad grade or missed opportunity to do well. For some students, paying their own way through college is motivation enough.

“My main motivation for going to school is knowing that I am paying for my education. In a sense, it’s me knowing that I’m not throwing my money down the drain.” Rhed said.

There are many sources of help for struggling students on campus.  The Center for Academic Success is located in the D wing, and has peer tutors for nearly every subject.  They offer peer tutors in math, biology, chemistry, physics, accounting, economics, computer science, economics, psychology, sociology, and Spanish.

Located inside CAS is the Writing Lab.  There are faculty tutors (meaning they are instructors themselves) to help with writing assignments, such as that research paper for English or the reading review for literature.

Faculty tutors are available for math Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.  They help in lower level math classes, such as MAT 060, MAT 070 and MAT 080, but are also available to other students if not busy.

There are resources available to students needing help with their schedule, time management, or anxiety related to school available both in CAS and the counseling and advising office, located in U-267.

Rhed recommends getting involved on campus as a way of both staying motivated and keeping up in classes.

“Though it might seem counterintuitive, get really involved on campus! It truly helps with time management because you just learn how to keep up with classes and do something you enjoy. Find your passion and make it known on campus.” she said.

More information on CAS and getting tutoring is available on their website (, through My.Parkland, and in their office, located in D-120.  Information on scheduling, getting personal help, and time management can be found in the Counseling and Advising Office, located in U-267.