Preparing Your High School Student for a Career

« Back  |  

During this important time in your high school student’s life, they’re just beginning to explore their interests and the possible career paths. Your support is vital to making that exploration comfortable and exciting. To aid you in your student’s journey, here are several ways you can prepare your high school student for the career of their dreams:

Offer words of encouragement

As your student goes through high school, they will begin exploring career paths, joining clubs and organizations and participating in extracurricular activities. Throughout this time, your encouragement of their curiosity and hard work is essential. Nurture their passions and give them room to make their own mistakes or decisions. As long as you remain supportive and open, they will feel confident in knowing they can rely on you even when they aren’t sure of which career is right for them.

Stay up to date

The careers of today may not represent those of the future as the job market continues to evolve to meet new challenges and opportunities. It’s important you stay up to date with the latest career trends, developments, and demands to help your student choose their career wisely and ensure plenty of opportunities in the future. Check out our blog to learn how education will shape the future of jobs.

Prioritize internships

Your student is very busy on a day-to-day basis between school, homework, hobbies and jobs. However, make sure to emphasize to your student the importance of internships. Internships are a great way for students to get familiar with the daily operations of different careers and find the one that’s right for them. It’s also a great opportunity to stand out when it comes time for college admissions.

Offer to help them review online internship resources such as Chegg Internships, a site that connects high school and college students to available internships across the country. Practice interviewing skills with your student and give them genuine feedback. Or, help them shop for the right interviewing attire. Your support now can have a huge impact on whether your student is able to get an internship ahead of the curve.

 

Your high school student is about to embark on a journey of discovery. Your knowledge, love, and guidance will be vital along the way, and ASU Prep Digital is here to help. To learn more about career pathways, an essential part of a student’s journey to college, please visit our career pathways page. During this crucial stage in your student’s life, let’s work together to help them prepare for the career of their dreams.

Looking for additional information on helping your child succeed? Check out these blog posts:

Five Activities You Can Do This Summer to Boost Your College Application

« Back  |  

You’ve turned in your last assignments, taken your last final, and bid farewell to the classmates you’ve spent all semester with. This can only mean one thing: summer is here! While it’s the perfect time to unwind and catch up on all the episodes of the latest Netflix crave you missed, summer is also a great time to boost your college application. Here are five activities that will help you stand out from the crowd:

Virtual college visits

One of the best ways to express your interest in a prospective college, and boost your college application, is to visit! While many colleges have temporarily suspended on-campus visits, several institutions are offering virtual tours, including Arizona State University.

Virtual Experience ASU visits are live sessions with ASU enrollment and academic team members held through Zoom. This gives students an opportunity to learn and ask questions about the admission and enrollment process. School visits, even virtual ones, give you a leg up on the competition by knowing exactly what to expect come application season, so be sure to schedule a few this summer!

Learn a second language

We’ve already talked about the top three benefits of learning a second language, so what are you waiting for? Summer is the perfect time to dive deep into a new language, whether it’s Spanish, French, or even German! In fact, ASU Prep Digital is offering world language courses this summer, and Arizona students can enroll at no cost. There are also fun apps you can use, such as Duolingo.

Volunteer your time

Volunteering is an excellent way to give back to your community and show colleges the different causes you’re passionate about. As we continue to battle a global pandemic, there are plenty of ways to safely help the cause, including volunteering at food banks or offering to help make masks to donate. Volunteer Match is a great place to start and will show you available opportunities in your area.

Dive deep into your passion

Colleges like to see that applicants are well-rounded and passionate outside of the classroom, which means taking the time to develop new hobbies and skills. Whether it’s joining a sports team, learning how to code, or picking up an instrument, there are so many ways to explore your passions and show off your talents.

Prepare for the SAT/ACT 

It’s no secret that your  SAT and ACT test scores are vital to your college application, but did you know that scoring well also puts you in the running to earn scholarships? That’s why it’s never too soon to start prepping. There are plenty of resources at your disposal, including practice tests and study guides. And be sure to visit the official ACT and SAT websites for information on testing dates and registration.

 

Looking for more activities that will boost your college application this summer? Check out this post:

Top 10 Summer Activities to Boost Your College Resume

Four Ways to Stay Motivated in Online Learning

« Back  |  

One of the most rewarding parts of being an online learner is the freedom to learn anywhere, any time. However, it can be a bit overwhelming if you’re unfamiliar with a learning environment that requires time management skills and self-discipline. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to stay motivated in online learning that will ensure success all semester long. Let’s take a look at some tips:

Set Realistic Goals

Setting goals is a great way to stay motivated in online learning. However, aiming too high can be the fastest road to disappointment. Make your goal-setting more impactful by creating SMART goals. A SMART goal is a goal that is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time bound.

The objective is to set yourself up for success by utilizing smaller targets along the way to your goal. For every target you meet, you are one step closer to reaching your ultimate goal. For example, let’s say you have a project due at the end of the month. Your goal is to meet that deadline. You plan to spend 1 hour on that project every day until it is done. For a more in-depth explanation on SMART goals, check out this video by Charles Duhigg.

Additionally, at ASU Prep Digital, you’ll be paired with a Learning Success Coach who can help you create and manage your goals and offer support all semester long.

Create An Environment That Keeps You Focused

With online learning, the world is your classroom—your favorite coffee shop, local library or your living room couch.

Pick an environment that’s conducive to your learning style and will promote productivity. Avoid crowded places if you’re easily distracted. Ditch your couch if you’ll be too tempted by the tv remote. Some of the most productive learning environments are those that create a clear separation between work and play. Therefore, getting away from your room or house may be key to making the most of your time as a student.

Consider visiting your public library, obtaining a membership to a co-working space or finding a coffee shop that offers relatively quiet and comfortable seating. Most importantly, once you find the place that works for you, create a routine of going back.

Take A Break

It might seem counter intuitive, but sometimes the best way to stay motivated in online learning is to hit the pause button.

In a study by psychology professor Alejandro Lleras, groups of participants were observed as they performed a repetitive task for an hour. Over time, they became increasingly unfocused due to our brain’s adapted ability to fade out awareness during prolonged stimulation. Lleras found that, with a short interval of rest, participants who received these breaks were much more effective at staying focused throughout the task.

You can apply this to your learning experience by taking intermittent breaks from your work. Even if it’s just five minutes, step away from your computer and enjoy an activity that puts you at ease, like petting your dog, meditating or listening to music. When you come back to the task, you’ll have renewed clarity and focus. To learn more about Professor Lleras study, check it out here.

Reward Your Hard Work

Positive reinforcement has been a well-known method for encouraging behavior since B.F. Skinner popularized it through his studies. Apply this psychological approach to your studies by rewarding your effort and accomplishments afterwards. So the next time you finish a project ahead of schedule, celebrate! Share your accomplishment with friends and family, buy that pair of shoes you’ve had your eye on, or simply use your extra time to relax at home. Visit Psychology Today to learn more about positive reinforcement.

At ASU Prep Digital, we love celebrating our student’s accomplishments. Check out our student spotlight of Olivia Bolles, an ASU Prep Digital student who embodies all of traits of a successful online learner and even shares some helpful tips on staying motivated!

 

Online learning is tremendously rewarding in the freedom it offers students, but with that freedom comes the need for discipline and self-motivation. In times when these skills are tested, rely on the above tactics to keep yourself on track during your online learning experience.

Looking for more insight on being successful in online learning? Check out these blog posts:

What Makes a Successful Online Student?

« Back  |  

You’ve done the research, discussed it with your parents, and decided you’d like to enroll in an online high school. But now another question comes to mind: What makes a successful online student?

Every student may learn a bit differently, but there are tools and tips in place to help you succeed no matter what. Let’s take a look at the characteristics of a successful online student:

Strong time management skills

In a traditional high school, you have a set schedule every day. You go to certain classes at certain times, then go home at the same time every day. In online learning, things are a little different. At ASU Prep Digital, students are given a pace chart to help them stay on track for each class. If you pair that with a planner (you can even personalize your own!) you’ll be able to effectively manage your time each day to avoid feeling overwhelmed. And if you ever feel like you’re falling behind, your Learning Success Coach is a great resource and always ready to help!

Strong communication skills

Being a strong communicator will be essential to your success as an online learner. It’s important to be proactive in reaching out when you need help or clarification on an assignment, whether you’re asking a teacher or a classmate. Luckily, you’ll have the chance to improve written and verbal skills in online learning. At ASU Prep Digital, students have a variety of communication tools at their disposal, including video chats, emails, phone calls, and texts.

Basic computer skills

Your computer will serve many functions during your online learning experience, so it’s vital that you know how to use certain programs and tools that will aid in your success. Being familiar with Microsoft Word and PowerPoint is a good place to start, as you’ll be writing assignments and putting together presentations. Since many online courses function like websites, you’ll also want to familiarize yourself with the specific programs your school uses. For example, ASU Prep Digital uses Zoom, a video meeting platform, for live lessons. But don’t worry—students get a crash course before diving right in!

Good Study/Work Environment

One of the benefits of online learning is getting to do school work wherever you want. It’s nice to get a change of scenery, especially when you’re feeling restless, but it’s a good idea to create a space in your home that’s equipped with everything you need to be productive. Make sure you remove all distractions, like TV or game consoles, and stock up on supplies, such as notebooks and pens, that will help you study and complete assignments efficiently.

Self-motivator 

At the end of the day, a successful online learner is independent, responsible, and self-motivating. It’s up to you to get everything done in a timely fashion, and you have the freedom to work ahead or spend a little extra time on difficult topics. But this doesn’t mean you’ll be alone on your journey! Your teachers, LSC, and parents will always be available to help and guide you to ensure you’re on the path to success.

 

Think online learning is the right choice for you? Schedule a call with an admissions advisor to learn more about ASU Prep Digital.

Or, if you’re still on the fence, check out more blog posts on online learning below:

Socialization Myths in Online Learning

« Back  |  

As more students enroll in online high school, socialization myths in online learning increase as well. At its core, socialization is the process of learning how to behave and interact with others in society. 

Education plays an integral role in teaching social skills and cues, immersing students in diversity, and introducing students to different social situations. Because of this, many believe that students who enroll in online schools miss out on the socialization component. 

Here are a few socialization myths in online learning that we’d like to debunk:

How often do online students interact with their teachers and peers?

When people think about online learning, they might imagine students holed up in their rooms doing schoolwork alone, never talking to anyone else. This couldn’t be more wrong! Many online high schools, including ASU Prep Digital, host frequent live lessons. During these scheduled times, teachers connect with small groups of students using online video chat and answer questions, go over class materials, discuss topics, play games and socialize.

Many live-lessons also include break-out rooms where students can collaborate on projects. Outside of the teacher-sponsored live lessons, students are also encouraged to start group chats with classmates and attend virtual study sessions.

Do online schools offer clubs and activities?

Many online high schools offer the same clubs as brick-and-mortar schools, including student government, yearbook, and National Honor Society. These opportunities are open to all students and usually meet once a week virtually so students get to interact with their peers and club advisor.

Students are also encouraged to propose their own club ideas for consideration and implementation. ASU Prep Digital currently has over 12 clubs for students to participate in, such as STEM club, mythology, and world languages.

Do online students ever see their classmates in person?

Students may not sit in physical classrooms with their peers, but that doesn’t mean they never see them. Online high schools will find opportunities to host in-person events for their students and staff, whether it’s a back-to-school orientation or a pizza party.

At ASU Prep Digital, students even get to meet up for special campus tours of ASU! And we have in-person graduation ceremonies, bringing students and staff together to celebrate their accomplishments.

 

The truth is that just like in traditional schools, there are plenty of opportunities for students to socialize. And now that we’ve debunked some of the common myths surrounding online learning, we’ll be discussing how socialization in an online learning environment is different from a traditional school setting in our next post.

Interested in debunking more socialization myths? Check out these posts:

The Best University Courses to Take in High School

« Back  |  

College may seem distant when you first enter high school, but it goes faster than you think. One of the best ways to get a head start is to enroll in university courses as a high school student. If you’re enrolled in a traditional school, you can join our community of learners at ASU Prep Digital and take individual university courses through ASU to earn college credit. Our full-time students work with their personal Learning Success Coach to design accelerated course pathways to college majors and careers.

Ready to challenge yourself? Here are some of the best university courses to start with:

First-Year Composition

First-Year Composition is a required general education course normally divided between two semesters. It teaches students how to read and write critically in a university setting.

At ASU Prep Digital, we offer the opportunity to take both ENG 101 and 102 through ASU, meaning you can finish an entire year of English courses before you even step on campus!

Biology

Along with the required English courses, you also need to take science courses to fulfill your general education requirements. Why not get a head start by enrolling in university classes as a high school student?

Incoming freshmen typically take biology as their first university science course. ASU offers BIO 101 in the form of BioBeyond, an introductory biology course that caters to every student through adaptive, personalized learning. The best part? ASU Prep Digital students can enroll in the class and earn both high school and college credit. You can check  out our course review here.

World Language

Students are required to take two consecutive years of a second language for college admission. Many high school students only receive high school credit for their language courses, but ASU Prep Digital students have an upper hand thanks to concurrent courses.

You can take either Spanish or French and earn both high school and college credit for the same course. Not only will you not have to take a second language in college, but you’ll also have a handful of college credits under your belt.

 

In addition to these introductory-level courses, ASU Prep Digital offers higher-level university courses where students can start earning credit in their major. Full-time students are eligible to take two free university courses each semester, saving them time and money when they arrive on campus.

Ready to become a Sun Devil? Check out the university course catalog and get started today.

How to Set Yourself Up For Success – Sophomore Year

« Back  |  

You’ve done it! You’ve made it through freshman year unscathed. No longer at the bottom of the totem pole, you’re eager to begin your sophomore year a little wiser, a bit more prepared and ready to slay the next chapter of high school! Conquering daily homework and heavy course loads during your freshman year was no small feat and neither are the upcoming challenges. Keep in mind that in order to grow, you must first have an end in mind. Here are some goals to reach for in sophomore year:

Discover new extracurricular activities

Now that you’ve learned how to balance your course load and social life, it’s a great time to start diversifying your interests. Not only will this introduce you to new ideas and social circles, but it will also give you quality material for your college résumé. These days, a high GPA and diploma might qualify you, but what makes you stand out is extracurricular activities. 

We recommend you focus this year on exploring these options and pick a few to dedicate your attention to. On campus, you could join an academic club, philanthropic organization or athletic team. Off campus, you could take on a part-time job, find an internship or volunteer in a community project. These are just a few examples; there are many more at your disposal. Engaging in extracurricular activities shows colleges that you are a hard-working, well-rounded and active member in your community.

Foster supportive friendships

Freshman year was most likely fueled by late nights, study sessions and new friendships. As your courses get harder and your free time becomes sparse, be considerate of the friendships you are nurturing. Friends that offer genuine love and support have your best interests at heart. They will get you through stressful courses and tough life lessons. 

Look for friends you can study and celebrate with. Be wary of those that never seem interested in anything but the next social event. The friendships you form now can impact the rest of high school, for better or worse, so surround yourself with friends who share the same goals and are making strides to achieve them. 

In the same respect, be a good friend to others. Encourage their successes and help them be the best versions of themselves. Who knows, some of these friends might be here for a lifetime if you choose wisely.

Master life skills

Right now, you probably live with your family. Perhaps you already wash your own laundry, clean your room and cook your own meals. That’s wonderful! However, if you haven’t developed a knack for cooking yet, now’s the time to start. In preparation for college, you should get a head-start on conquering these essential life skills so when you do live on your own, you can rely on yourself to get it done. There’s nothing more frustrating than learning the hard way that whites need to be separate from your colors! 

This is an exciting time. You get to meet new friends, discover new hobbies and learn about subjects that really matter to you. Take advantage of your position as a sophomore and get a head start on the things that will matter in the long-run: your extracurricular activities, your  friendships and life skills. You’ll be thankful later in life that you didn’t delay in working toward these goals. Have a wonderful sophomore year!