TORONTO, August 24, 2015 — Skills learned in the classroom are vital to succeeding in the ‘real world’, says York University Professor Thomas Klassen, coauthor of a book that offers tips for being successful in university, landing a great job and having a good life.
“For students who decide to pursue a university education, the years spent on campus are the best training for the rest of life,” says Klassen in the Faculty of Liberal Arts &
Professional Studies. “The skills learned in the classroom such as communication, problem solving, teamwork and adaptability are critical to flourishing in the ‘real world.’”
Published in time for the new school year, How to Succeed at University (And Get a Great Job!): Mastering the Critical Skills You Need for School, Work and Life, is an essential guide for students, whether entering university straight from high school or returning to school years later, according to Klassen and his coauthor John Dwyer, professor emeritus in humanities.
Drawing examples from their own experiences as university students, as well as from the thousands of students they have taught, the authors provide practical advice for mastering the day-to-day tasks that allow students to thrive in the classroom. These skills – locating and sifting sources of information, writing well, conducting oral presentations, working in groups, meeting deadlines, and dealing with people in positions of authority – are also at the core of every interesting job.
The authors provide a wealth of strategies to help students, such as mind mapping and rapid writing. In the chapter on critical skills, the authors show to extract the hidden and unintended meanings from books and articles. Overall, Klassen and Dwyer demystify the path to enjoying university studies, and the road to obtaining fulfilling employment after graduation.
“I initially saw university as an ordeal to be gotten through. When I learned what really counted, everything changed for me,” says Dwyer, acknowledging the life-changing effects of studying with great scholars and teachers.
The authors also write about developing research strategies including effective use of social media that help students navigate from the classroom to the boardroom and beyond.
“It’s the new reality that learning is lifelong. Moreover, learning has never been exclusive to university. Learning in any situation is a set of attitudes, aptitudes and strategies that can apply to all routes,” Dwyer says, noting that the book also speaks to parents, including those who may not have attended university.
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