Becoming an Effective GCU Student

Becoming an Effective GCU Student


In this Topic, you will learn more about GCU and how you can succeed as a GCU student. The objectives for this Topic, listed in the syllabus, state that after completing this Topic, you will be able to:

  • Examine university and academic policies.
  • Identify the implications of plagiarism and other dishonest acts within the code of conduct process at GCU.
  • Analyze how Title IX impacts university students.
  • Locate peer reviewed sources and their citations by using the GCU Library.

To help you accomplish these objectives, you have been provided this reading document to help guide you, aloctivities will be explained in greaterdetail within the course syllabus and within each particular assignment.  The additional details below should also assist you in knowing how to approach your assignments.

GCU Assignments

This Topic’s worksheet details the components of an assignment. You will complete this assignment in order to fulfill the second course objective listed above.  For each Topic objective in the courses you take at GCU, you will complete an assignment, quiz/exam, or discussion question to demonstrate your accomplishment of that objective.

  • Syllabus:The course syllabus at GCU is provided to inform students about the topics, objectives, and assignments for each course. Notice that the syllabus is divided into “Topics and Weeks” and each section has a set of readings, assignments, and mandatory discussion questions.
  • Objectives:Objectives are brief statements that explain what you, the student, will be able to do by the end of the Topic. Before you start each Topic, pay close attention to the objectives; this will help you to recognize the point of the assignments, which help you to achieve the skills outlined in the objectives.
  • Topic Materials:The Topic Materials are accessible from the Course Syllabus in the LoudCloud classroom.  They include lectures, textbook readings, GCU eLibrary resources, websites, and any other learning materials required for successful completion of each Topic.
  • Assignments:  Assignments are required to demonstrate successful learning of course objectives.  Make sure you are following the assignment instructions carefully as you complete your assignments. Pay attention to things such as the required word count for papers and when the assignment is due. Before you turn an assignment in, refer back to the instructions to make sure what you produced meets the requirements.
  • Rubrics:The assignment rubric (if available) or grading criteria is what the instructor uses to grade assignments. You also need to use the rubric or grading criteria to guide you as you complete assignments. The rubric will specify what needs to be addressed to achieve a certain grade. Using rubrics will make your assignments better. Look over the rubric before, during, and after you complete your assignment so you know you are meeting all the requirements.
  • The GCU eLibrary:To successfully research academic and professional journals, you must learn to navigate the GCU eLibrary.  Access to GCU’s eLibrary may be easily found under the “Resources” tab within your LoudCloud classroom. For more information on how to successfully navigate GCU’s eLibrary, complete the Library Walk Through tutorial.

Tracking Your Progress

Course Calendar

The LoudCloud Course Calendar is an excellent resource for helping you to keep track of what is due in your courses. The calendar will show when discussion question responses are due as well as all of your course assignments.  Reminders are often present within the calendar for lengthy assignments that should be started in Topics prior to the Topics in which they are due. For example, if you have research paper due in Topic 7, you may see a reminder in your calendar.


To keep track of your course progress, you should view your grades in the GradeBook available under the “Reports” tab in the LoudCloud Classroom. Your instructors will record your discussion and assignment grades weekly. You should keep track of your progress and always take the initiative to ask your instructor for areas in which you can improve.

Time Management

Time management is essential when taking on new responsibilities such as attending school. There are some very simple time management skills that can be helpful for a student in a learning environment. Set your goals and then prioritize. The high-priority goal becomes most important to manage. Be realistic. Many times, goals are not achieved, as they are not designed to be achievable. Planning takes time and effort, but it is time well spent.

Limit distractions when studying, reading, or preparing an assignment. As small as a distraction may seem, it can have a great impact on concentration. Find a comfortable, quiet place for study. Dedicate and allow the required time to accomplish the work required.


Assignments are at the heart of what you will be doing as a student. They help test and build the knowledge you have gained. They affect your grades and grade point average (