Throughout their schooling years, and especially during the A-levels, students are used to reading, memorising and regurgitating what they learned in class. However, when it comes to university, rote learning and regurgitation is not enough since lecturers expect something more.
University demands students to be able to think critically; they need the skills to research a topic, formulate arguments and develop a stance. In addition, experts agree that university lecturers tend to look for three key things. Firstly, the ability to read and understand information from sources with different viewpoints. Secondly, the ability to conduct research and understand the difference between a reliable and unreliable source. Thirdly, university lecturers expect students to show signs of independent and critical thinking or looking at an idea from multiple perspectives.
When it comes to how to study well, experts recommend lecture notes as the first port of call. Reading lists are another important resource for students. Ultimately, students need to understand themselves as an individual and find out how they learn best in order to maximise their potential.
In my opinion, this is what education is fundamentally about – the ability to ingest information, assess it critically, and apply it objectively. Rote learning has become obsolete and no longer productive. Our students should be analytical and critical thinkers who are prepared for the new economy.
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