The Office of Faculty Development

The First Class - Tips for A Successful Semester

The first class, and the first week in general, are critical to setting tone and expectations for students. It can be more than just a ‘syllabus day’. Use the ideas in this guide to make the most out of the first day and week of a semester. 

The first day is an important time to establish how your classroom is going to work and begin fostering a community within your course. Important areas you will want to be sure to address include:

  • Connection with the instructor
  • Connection with peers (other students)
  • Connection with content
  • Student Learning Outcomes
  • Expectations of students
  • Expectations of the instructor (from students)
  • Course structure
  • How to succeed in the course

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