international student life

international student

College Class Environment

Class Environment for International Students, Relaxed, Food in class, Technology, Grading, Flexibility and more.

In other countries, colleges are very strict about students' conduct in class. You can only bring your books and writing supplies to class, listen to the professor, and sometimes participate.

Making noise and other distractions are prohibited. You are also not allowed to bring food and drinks to class. International student in the US are surprised to find their class environment very different from what they knew in their home country.

The class scene is more open and relaxed. It's not uncommon to see students bring drinks and food to class and eat while the teacher is teaching. The first time I saw this, I thought the student was very rude and would surely get in trouble. However, I learned that it's no big deal here.

Technology is part and parcel of education here. Most students will have the latest technology including laptops other gadgets to use while in class. Actually some colleges now insist that every students should buy a laptop.

Another popular gadget that is gaining popularity and has potential to save students a lot of money is the electronic book reader. College books are very expensive and one usually uses them for a semester and then has to sell them used for a very low price. With Electronic book readers like the Amazon Kindle, one can buy electronic books a lot cheaper and get to keep them in your reader forever. A typical reader can hold up to 1500 books. This will also save you space to store books and you will be able to carry all your books wherever you like.

Online education is another great innovation an international students will discover. It is a cheaper and very efficient method to deliver education. Even in regular college classes, most of your tests and notes will be done online. There is little need to write notes in class except for the very essential points you may want to jot down. The teacher will usually email you the material that he/she is teaching and you can read it later on your computer. With totally online education, you can take a course without ever physically attending the college. This is delivered entirely online and all your exams are done online. It is a very effective and cheap way to educate yourself. You can also take classes from colleges that are hundreds of miles from where you live.

If you attended college in your home country before becoming an international student, you will be surprised to discover that exam grading is much easier at an American university than at universities in other countries. I attended college in my country first and had to work very hard to get A's and B's. When I came here, I was surprised to find that I could get A's very easily. If you do your work and understand the material, it is very easy to succeed in an American college. Another good thing is that grading is not only exam based. You get to do labs, discussions, project, papers and presentations that all count towards your final grade.

In many other countries, college education is very competitive and many students compete for few college spots. The consequence of this is that students are expected to choose a Major they want to study and when they are admitted, they cannot change to another Major even if they later realize they don' t like what they initially chose. In American universities, this is not the case. One can drop a major any time if they don't like it and can enroll in another major. This is great because one doesn't want to be forced to study something they don't like just because they chose it initially.

Another interesting thing you will notice has to do with gender. In many countries, you will find more men than women attending college. For example, there were about 70% men to 30% women in the technical college I attended in my home country before coming to the U.S. This may have been partly because it was a technical college, but also because of the unfortunate fact that men get more education opportunities than women in many countries. In the U.S. you will realize there are more women students than men in almost all colleges.

These are just a few things that you will notice while attending college here as an international student. Take them in stride and try to learn as much as possible.