How to Write a Cover Letter

In my last post, I wrote all about professional communication. One topic I didn’t cover, however, was the dreaded cover letter. This was on purpose. The cover letter is such a common and essential part of the job application process that it deserves its own post.

And so I bring you today’s article: how to write a cover letter.

I’ll go over everything you need to know to write a killer cover letter or personal statement for any part-time job, internship, or future career path. Let’s get started! Read More…

The Beginner’s Guide to Professional Communication

We’ve written a lot on this blog about how to perfect your writing in the classroom. Whether it’s how to write better papers, how to write papers more efficiently, or how to do the research behind the papers, we’ve got it covered. One area we haven’t touched, however, is the writing you need to do outside the classroom. And no, I’m not talking about your Tinder profile or Twitter bio. I’m talking about professional communication.

If you’re in your first couple years of college, the professional world may seem a long way off  But it will be here sooner than you know it, especially since you’re going to follow our guides and land a killer internship, summer job, or freelance gig before most of your classmates have even written their first resume.
Read More…

Attending a Liberal Arts University: Worth It?

If you’ve ever taken a college tour, you’ve probably heard a line similar to this:

“Our college will change your life. It will build habits of mind that will stick with you forever. You’ll get individual attention unlike anywhere else. When you graduate, you won’t just be a student – you’ll be a scholar.”

These are just a few of the promises that small, private liberal arts colleges use to sell students on attending. The implication is that colleges like this are worth the hefty price tag, since you can get things unavailable at large state universities.

But do these schools really live up to all the hype? Are you any better off at them than at a state university? Most of all, is it worth the extra money?
Read More…

How to Write High-Quality Papers and Essays More Quickly

I’m not gonna lie: writing papers can suck. Even as someone who basically writes papers for a living these days (like this article), I still viewed every college paper with a tinge of dread.

After all, writing a paper isn’t like working math problems or reading a chapter of a book. As frustrating as those activities can be, they always seemed more finite than the monumental task of “writing a paper.” You can’t just open the book and start working: you have to brainstorm, research, outline, draft, edit, and add those pesky citations.

As I moved through college, however, I developed a system for cranking out papers in record time. This let me spend more time on things that I enjoyed, such as writing for this blog and taking long walks through the woods. Today, I’m going to share this process so that you too can write papers more quickly (without a decrease in the quality of your writing). Read More…

The T-Shaped Person: Building Deep Expertise AND a Wide Knowledge Base

I dunno about you, but I’ve never been content just having one interest. I’ve always dabbled in lots of things. Over the years, these things have ranged from swimming to drawing to 3D modeling to rock climbing to essay writing to online business (to name just a few). Throughout all of that, however, writing remained my focus, the thing that I would tell people I was “good at.”

What’s more, I realized that the people I admire were also, generally, into lots of different things, even while specializing in a particular area. Take Henry David Thoreau, for example. People remember him for his writings on nature (Walden) and politics (Civil Disobedience), but the dude was into history, biology, poetry, botany, travel, land surveying, and more.

It wasn’t until recently, however, that I learned there was a name for this phenomenon. I first came across it in an on the Buffer blog, and I’ve since seen it all across the internet (an example of the priming effect in action). What is this magical term? It’s called the T-shaped person, and I think it’s one of the most powerful concepts for anyone who wants to build a diverse skill set while still having valuable specialization. Read More…

Use the Dreyfus Model to Learn New Skills

If you read College Info Geek, I assume that you’re not interested in remaining static. You want to progress and improve yourself. Self-improvement can take a lot of forms, including getting up earlier and beating procrastination. But one of the most powerful forms of self-improvement, in my experience, is learning new skills.

Unfortunately, the process of learning new skills isn’t always clear. It’s easy to Google “learn yoga” or “learn to play the guitar”, but this sort of content can only take you so far. What you need is, and what I’d been searching for a long time, is an approach to keep you going once you get past the early stages of learning. I’m excited to report that I recently found such an approach, and I’m going to share it with you in today’s article. Read More…

A Beginner’s Guide to Library Research

Picture this: It’s 2 am, and you’re on your fifth cup of coffee (or was it the sixth?). You’re crouched at a table in some dark corner of the library surrounded by fifteen open books. Equally as many tabs are open on your laptop, and the clock seems to tick in time with the blinking cursor in the document of your barely begun 10-page paper that’s due in seven hours.

Sound familiar? I know I’ve been there. I hope you haven’t, but I bet you’ve at least been in a similar situation. There are a lot of things that can explain how you got to this point, including procrastination, poor organization, and a messy schedule.

But I think, very often, the problem is also a lack of research skills. I know that my formal training in the actual mechanics of library research was limited to a couple 1-hour sessions my freshman year. Beyond that, I just had to figure most of it out through trial and error. Read More…

How to Create a Great Study Space

Where do you normally study? If the answer is “lying in bed with my laptop propped on my knees while eating deep-fried Cheetos,” then you might want to consider revamping your study space.

And that’s what today’s post is all about. We’re going to look at how to create (or find) a study spot that lets you get in, do your best work, and then get back to having high density fun.

We’ll examine the different types of study spaces, the do’s and don’t’s of study space creation, and the key principles to make sure your study space does what it should: help you study better.

Let’s get started! Read More…

Want more? Join over 150,000 students and grab my free book on earning better grades  →