College admission is getting increasingly competitive every year. When it comes to getting into a good college, the most important factors are GPA, extracurricular activities, and ACT scores.
There are plenty of ACT preparation courses out there, and these courses claim to help students improve their scores. But are these courses actually helpful? Read on to learn if an ACT prep course is worth it.
ACT prep courses actually work. Here’s how
Practice definitely helps you get better at anything, and that should be true for ACT preparation classes as well. ACT prep programs put a lot of emphasis on practice and problem-solving. However, this is not just based on common sense. There are studies that show the effectiveness of test prep classes.
According to a study conducted by the ACT, all students who engage in test prep courses improve their test scores. Gender, race or socioeconomic status has on effect on the effectiveness of engaging in an ACT prep program.
When it comes to taking a test, strategy is as important as knowledge. It’s not all about what you know; it’s also about how you approach the test. The best ACT prep websites put a lot of emphasis on strategies. Courses teach students test-taking strategies, which can be useful for solving real-life problems as well.
These programs provide students with performance reports and statistics. These reports and statistics help students learn about their strengths and weaknesses, and make the preparation more focused, precise and effective.
Factors to consider when choosing an ACT prep course
It is very important to be careful when choosing an ACT prep program because frankly, there are plenty of bad ones out there. However, it is not all about the quality of the course; it is also about the level of your preparation.
To improve your level of preparation, you must study hard. But with so many temptations, students these days get easily distracted. In this age of digital distractions, students need even greater self-discipline. Many serious students are using various techniques to improve focus.
Review sites like Edureviewer can help you make an informed decision, but you should not entirely rely on reviews. Here are the three main factors you need to take into consideration when choosing an ACT course:
Know your scoring level
First of all, make sure you take a test and know your scoring level. If you score above the median, don’t enroll in a class primarily intended for low-scoring students. It will lead to boredom and frustration, and you will end up learning nothing.
If you score below the median, a program intended for higher-scoring students may not be suitable for you. The bottom line is, you have to choose a course that is designed for students with the same level of preparation as you.
General philosophy and atmosphere
It is important to make sure that the program you are choosing is in line with your temperament. A course with a casual approach to preparation is not a good fit for a serious student. Rather, a serious student is likely to prefer a course with a rigid approach to preparation.
Most courses now encourage the use of educational apps. The young generation is embracing technology, and it’s making a huge difference in the way we learn and teach things. Identify your weaknesses with the help of your instructors, and use apps that help you overcome your weaknesses.
In general, instructors have a genuine willingness to help students. However, not all instructors have the same level of content knowledge or ability to teach. When you get in touch with a test prep company, let them know your strengths and weaknesses so that they can choose the right instructor for you.
ACT prep courses can be very helpful, but choosing the right course is of utmost importance. While courses are useful, it is you who actually take preparation for the test. If the course suits your temperament and level of preparation, and if you put in the effort, most likely you will notice a significant improvement in your scoring level.
Things to Know about Continuing Education for Engineers
Any post-secondary training or courses people seek after completing their formal education are considered continuing education. Seminars, one-time classes, webinars, online courses, and full-degree programs to earn credits might fall under this category. For instance, continuing education for engineers will enable them to stay current with advances in the engineering field. Advanced degrees and courses prepare them for new responsibilities and are necessary for continuing education in engineering and other professions.
Here are the essential details about the CEU requirements for professional engineers.
Achieving 30 PDH hours per renewal term is a continuing education provision for engineers. They are required to complete two PDHs in engineering ethics per renewal. For instance, if one resides in Nevada, they must acquire one that deals with the Nevada Revised Statutes and Nevada Administrative Code for each renewal.
Based on the engineer’s last name, license renewal happens on odd-numbered or even-numbered years. Here is the complete list of renewal dates.
- From letter A to E: The odd year for candidates with their last name starting with letters between A and E, the renewal date is January 1.
- From letter F to K: The odd year for candidates with their last name starting with letters between F and K, the renewal date is July 1.
- From letter L to R: The even year for candidates who have their last name starting with letters between L and R, the renewal date is January 1.
- From letter S to Z: The even year for candidates who have their last name starting with letters between S and Z, the renewal date is July 1.
The most professional development hours that can be carried over to the following renewal term are limited to 15. Ethics-related continuing education classes must be pertinent to an engineer’s field to boost competency. Law and regulation-related courses should be completed during the renewal duration.
How to Pursue Continuing Education?
Every state retains a minimum requirement for CE credits for professional engineers. It can range from zero to 15 or 30 credit hours of coursework. Communities have a minimum credit requirement to remain a member.
It is necessary for each license holder by the ASCE and the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying to finish 15 professional development hours annually. There is a massive availability of online courses and programs available to assist in continuing education for engineers and earning these credits.
To advance skills and proficiency for licensing, engineering candidates must take particular ethical, management, and technical courses related to their engineering fields. They can attend free online classes and seminars. It is because they will contribute toward your required professional development hours.
To obtain all the permitted PDHs, it is essential to retain document proof from the organization that creates the classes or videos. These activities will be considered self-study when any supporting evidence is absent. For professional engineers, the ultimate self-study is 5 PDHs.
To revive their license, it is vital for PEs to complete continuing education requirements. This training is incredibly beneficial because it assists them in expanding their technical knowledge and keeps them current with new developments. In addition, it upholds the engineering community’s general competency. Continuing education is beneficial for engineers and even employers. There are plenty of CE course types, allowing you to pick the ideal course.
15 Must-Read Academic Blogs for Researchers and Ph.D. Students
When searching the internet for information on a variety of subjects, blogs have rapidly become one of the most common resources. There is a wide variety of content available to read online, ranging from specialized content written by professionals to hobbyist content such as mom blogs and cuisine blogs. The question is, how do you choose which blogs to read when you’re going to write a research paper and seek scholarly and educational information for your research rather than just browsing for ‘write my papers for me’ services?
It is easy to get overwhelmed and lost when searching for academic blogs to read, especially when you are a doctoral student or a researcher. To help make the process easier, here is a list of some must-read academic blogs that will keep you updated on current research, new discoveries, and emerging topics.
DoctoralWritingSIG is a useful forum for anyone interested in doctorate writing to “exchange knowledge, resources, ideas, and dreams,” regardless of where they are in their academic careers. The blog covers subjects such as grant writing, instructions on writing the various components of a thesis or dissertation, grammatical advice, and academic publishing advice in order to establish a foundation of knowledge and abilities surrounding research writing.
Academics Write is a blog run by academics for academics. It engages post-secondary teachers, academic writing specialists, and students to evaluate the significance of writing, self-efficacy, academic writing misunderstandings, and instances in which students can be granted an extension for their projects. The posts are short and concise, making them easy to read at work or on a study break. Thanks to the variety of topics covered and the range of academics writing the posts, this blog can be a valuable resource for doctoral students conducting research, as well as instructors and teachers.
3. The Research Whisperer
The Research Whisperer is dedicated to the topic of doing research in academia. The blog aims to let readers know “what it’s like to do a Ph.D. at the moment when so many voices are shouting that we’re doing it wrong.” The blog features personal stories from researchers and Ph.D. students, as well as reviews of books and films relevant to the research community.
4. The Professor is In
From book summaries to book reviews and recommendations, this blog is a great source for finding the best books to read on a variety of academic topics. This blog is a source of academic advice for students everywhere. From general advice to topics such as grammar and writing, this blog will help any researcher improve their studies.
Dr. Eva Lantsoght, Researcher at Delft University of Technology, manages the blog PhD Talk. PhD Talk publishes blog postings about the “process of doing a Ph.D., the non-scientific skills you need during your PhD,” as well as Dr. Lantsoght’s experiences living and traveling abroad. She also blogs on structural concrete, which is her current research topic. Her blog entries contain research and academic writing techniques, as well as other themes including presenting at academic conferences, life as a Ph.D., being productive, and efficiently managing time. Dr. Lantsoght also welcomes submissions from guest contributors, with a special invitation to individuals who want to try their hand at academic blogging before launching their own website.
Write, Publish, Thrive is a writing, publishing, and intellectual life blog. Dr. Rich Furman, a professor at the University of Washington, manages it. Dr. Furman’s goal is to assist academics in “maximizing their skills and transcending their psychosocial hurdles in order to construct successful careers and prosper.” In light of this, among other resources, Write, Publish, Thrive provides practical strategies for publishing scientific publications and strengths-based counseling for academics.
7. The Skeptical Scientist (Timvanderzee)
Tim van der Zee, a Ph.D. student at Leiden University, manages the blog The Skeptical Scientist. Tim explains the name of his blog: skeptical scientists are individuals who are skeptical about their own research, what they read, and strive to increase evidential value. He discusses research methods, study design, evidence, (statistical) inference, and how we might better science in this site. The Skeptical Scientist discusses issues including how to apply for a position in academia and how to assess confidence intervals.
Athene Donald has been a professor of physics at the University of Cambridge for almost 20 years. Unlike some of the other blogs on this list that take a coaching-oriented approach, Professor Donald’s blog appears to present the ideas and viewpoints of researchers. Her blog entries address issues such as what to do and what not to do during academic conferences, gender disparities in academia, and so on. She also tries to strike a balance by posting a few blog entries about her own life and interests.
9. Dan Cohen
Dr. Dan Cohen is a Vice Provost, Dean, and Professor at Northeastern University and writes articles on current trends in the IT industry, digital libraries, eBooks writing, web cultures, digital humanities, communication trends, science of publishing, and the impact of digital media in our daily life.
10. Happy Academic
The topics range from posts about mental health in academia, lessons learned from teaching, teaching tips, and scholarly articles to helpful study tips, career advice, and work-life balance hints.
11. The Thesis Whisperer
This blog is committed to helping Ph.D. students to complete their thesis. This blog has useful material, therefore if you are working on a thesis, this could be the site for you.
12. Ph.D. Life
While this blog is British, there are loads of advice, tricks, insights, and some humor about the Ph.D. process, postdoctoral work, and life in academia. The author presents articles that are helpful for those starting their doctoral journey, as well as those in the middle of it.
The blog covers topics such as the application of blockchain technology in the writing field, the common grammar mistakes that students make when they write, and the most effective writing styles.
Dr. Jennifer Polk, a history PhD turned academic, life, and career coach for graduate students and PhDs, runs the blog From PhD to Life. Dr. Polk summarizes her work by stating that she assists “PhDs in launching meaningful careers” by assisting them in delving further into their own interests, exploring their possibilities, and dealing with academic pressure. From PhD to Life provides a wide range of tools for PhDs, all of which are targeted at assisting them in navigating their academic careers and living a better life. Dr. Polk considers her Transition Q&A series to be a must-read! This section features inspiring stories from PhDs about their rewarding post-PhD journeys.
15. Inside Higher Ed
Inside Higher Ed is a website that compiles blogs on a variety of scholarly issues and presents them in blog format. There is something for everyone here, from adaptability in educational settings to growth opportunities in the military. In addition to that, it consists of online technologies and digital learning resources that can aid support remote and online learning.
As a researcher or Ph.D. student, you always want to be on the cutting edge of your field. To do that, you need to be reading the latest and greatest academic research. But with so many blogs out there, it can be tough to know which ones are worth your time. Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of the best academic blogs that you should be reading. From blogs about the latest research findings to ones that offer advice on writing and publishing, these blogs have something for everyone. So, take a look and start reading!
There are many thousands of academic blogs out there, so we haven’t been able to try them all nor can we vouch for the accuracy of every post on these blogs. The caliber of writing and the accuracy of any given blog can vary over time so please do not consider this list an absolute ranking of these blogs.
How to Come up with Creative Ideas for Your Research
Sometimes there are not enough ideas for scientific research. It seems like everything has already been studied. Actually it is not. Where to get research topics or how to come up with one – read the article.
The topic often grows out of what excites and touches us to the core – not only at lectures and seminars, but also outside the academic environment: it can be a fact of your biography or a problem that worries.
You can use essay writing service to order the essay you need. To come up with a theme:
- think about what issues discussed in class are important to you;
- address disputes and conflicts between different researchers (classical and modern, in books and at conferences), try to understand different points of view and find your own approach;
- reflect on topics that hook you in the context of social issues and personal reflections.
Record your thoughts in the simplest possible way in a notepad or in a special application. The first idea can be very general and be expressed in one phrase – it is important to catch this blank for future work.
It is useful to have an electronic or paper notebook at hand during the entire course of work, depending on what you are used to. Our consciousness can throw a thought at any moment, and if it is not written down, it will be lost. At best, you will remember that you had some good idea; at worst, you won’t even remember that.
Do You Need to “Get Sick” with the Topic?
It’s good if the topic of an essay or dissertation arouses interest and emotions: love, passion, joyful excitement, or misunderstanding, irritation and anxiety. Such emotions are an invigorating driver that will not allow you to quit what you have started and will help you go through all the formal, routine and difficult stages of work: placing links, designing a bibliography, searching for sources, correct citation, etc.
There is another way to build relationships with text. The topic may not evoke any feelings – neither delight nor hatred. This means that you are rationally rather than emotionally building your path. Perhaps research on this topic will earn you a grant, or this paper needs to be written in order to complete a certain course. You have to live with your work for many hours, days, and sometimes months. If you are not indifferent to the topic, it will be easier for you to realize at every single moment why you are doing it. But there is a risk of entering into a “difficult (or even, as our interlocutors say, abusive) relationship with your own project both with a complete lack of interest and with excessive emotional involvement.
How to Choose a Topic according to Your Strength?
Think about it “lift”. A common mistake inexperienced researchers make is an optimistic view of time and opportunity. There will definitely be hitches, slowdowns, rewriting. Start from pessimistic forecasts. At best, you will have time, at worst, you will be mentally prepared.
You will need time to read and think about what you have read. If the research includes field work, it will take time to pilot and develop a draft (and, remember, to rewrite it). Allow time for all stages of research development, and not just for writing the final text.
Consult with the supervisor: ask if you have time to write a paper on the topic you are taking on. Teachers work a lot with texts, they will help to assess the amount of work, and, if necessary, narrow it down.
How to Make a Topic Unusual and Relevant?
This is necessary if you want to add an atypical field to your field, say something new, or go into interdisciplinarity. Try asking original questions. One of the scientists who started asking strange questions in sociology was Georg Simmel. For example: How does simple chatter happen and about what? How do people flirt? How do they have lunch? How do doors work in houses? Why does the picture have a frame? Such things simply could not come to the mind of serious researchers – but it turned out that this is possible.
Science fiction can serve as inspiration: it often describes what our world would look like if things went differently.
Relevance is the significance of a topic for your potential readership or for the general public, depending on the specialty. This is getting into the discussion that is being conducted around the issue of interest. You don’t write your paper in a vacuum: by writing you enter into a big conversation that takes place in your scientific field. The topic should be significant for someone – for 7 people, if you are dealing with an extremely exotic issue, for 50-300-500 people, if you write within the framework of some studies. Find conferences for researchers in your field or specialized journals. Look at the discussion going on there and think about what your topic might be of interest to your colleagues.
How to Combine Personal Interest and Relevance?
Yes, it sounds strange: on the one hand, you have to do what others do, because science is a team effort. On the other hand, you have to do something new, something new. On a field trampled down by thousands of researchers, you need to find a site where something valuable is hidden that others missed. Going and not repeating what others have already done is a creative task. To begin with, you can disagree with some of the researchers whose texts you read. You will need to find arguments to argue with these authors or offer something that they missed.
You do not know how your work will end? This is a big plus. You don’t have to pose a problem knowing how you’re going to end up solving it. The research task is precisely to discover the previously unobvious – for you, those around you and the discipline as a whole. Do not waste your time on everything that is understandable. You sit down to write a text to learn more and say something new, so cling to your questions.
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