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Editorial Welcome
E-mail Tutor
Backwards Planning
First Draft
Speed Learning
Emergency Preparedness
New Tracking Software
Catch the Last Issue!


Welcome to the October 2005 issue of the Learning Center Newsletter!

Dedicated to providing information for learning assistance professionals.

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Editorial Welcome

By Mona Pelkey

Autumn greetings!

October is a wonderful time of year here in the Northeast. Fall means the burgundy, ochre, rust, and orange of turning foliage, seasonal chrysanthemums, and pumpkins. The cool, crisp air, tempered by the still-warm afternoon sun, is punctuated with the spirited cheers of college football fans, as well as the cries of gathering birds as they prepare to migrate south. Our students are settled into their semester routines now, and they are just beginning to realize, as they receive their first feedback from their instructors, that they may need some additional assistance in order to succeed academically. And we, always at the ready, will be there for them, whatever their need...
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In the Spotlight: Establishing Guidelines for the Email Tutor

By Elke A. Kleisch, National-Louis University

Seize the Day: Backwards Planning for Optimal Student Performance

By Mona Pelkey, United States Military Academy, West Point


Technology has broadened the scope of how we deliver learning assistance to students. Casazza and Silverman recognize, "New technology is evident in computer-assisted instruction, distance learning through E-mail, interactive learning experiences with specialized software, and writing networks in which students and faculty share their compositions via the electronic highway" (1996, p. 268). As online learning ...
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"Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives, that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it! I say. Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows." --Michael Landon

I begin this treatise on time management with...
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The Hardest Part is How to Begin:
Tackling the First Draft

By Kyle Cushman, Vermont College of Union Institute and University

The moment is here-you've gone to class, done the reading, taken notes, percolated your ideas (which may have involved time spent vacuuming your car or rearranging the posters on your dorm room wall while thinking over your topic), and maybe you've even tried some pre-writing techniques such as brainstorming or mind-mapping. The deadline for the paper draws near and there is no avoiding the fact that you must sit...
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It Only Takes Seconds in Class to Speed Learning

By Dennis Congos, University of Central Florida

Resources for Emergency Preparedness

By Julianne Scibetta, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia

When Persephone disappeared from the Grecian fields, her mother mourned and nature followed in kind. Across the grades of education we see our own Demeters as late August's sun slips into September. We also see a gamut of students perhaps wishing they could be toted somewhere other than school...
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There are quick activities that instructors may use that have the potential to speed learning. Each of these do not take much time during a lecture and can yield greater results in learning and recall. These are some of the college level skills for learning that students must acquire to learn what faculty have to teach. Each one is easily woven to a lecture....
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By Julianne Scibetta, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia


I don't blame any of you for passing up the opportunity to attempt the Pirate Problem. Let's return to classic puzzles:

1. Spare Part (1 point): At a DIY evening class, the instructor passes around a box in which there are ten screwdrivers, one for each person present, including himself. Everybody takes a screwdriver, yet there is still one left in the box. Explain.

2. Triples (3 points): How many times does the digit 3 appear between 1 and 50?

3. Sister Sister (5 points): If only one of these statements is true, how many sisters do I have?
-I've got ten or more sisters.
-I've got less than ten sisters.
-I've got at least one sister.

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New Testing Center Tracking Software

Engineerica Systems, Inc. is pleased to announce the release of its new testing center database software. AccuTesting was launched during the NCTA (National College Testing Association) conference in August. Its benefits include:

* Tracking tests inventory, including tests info, testing rules, due date, and more.
* Managing the test taking process, including tests checkout and time left (for timed tests).
* Notifying the proctor of test conditions and/or materials that are allowed for each test.
* Notifying the proctor of elapsed time and warning when time expires for a test.
* Automatically notifying the instructor when a test is taken.
* Reporting on the number of tests taken per day and per hour of the day.
* Showing current status of all tests.
* And more!

In celebration of the release of this new software, Engineerica is giving away a limited number of AccuTesting licenses for free! To learn more about AccuTesting and how to get your complementary license, visit the AccuTesting web site at

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Site Last Updated October 10, 2005.