The Sam Center is offering a study skills class beginning Nov. 4. The last day to sign up for the class is Friday. The sessions will cover procrastination, time management, class note-taking, how to read your textbook, test taking and stress management.The study skills class is designed for a six-week series. One topic will be covered each week. The Sam Center is now running its third six-week series. “Because we realize it is the end of the semester, which equals a lot of stress, we have a list of ‘drop in’ study skills hours,” said Dr. Bernice Strauss, director of Academic Support Programs. The drop-in list is for those that are not able to sign up by Friday or who would like to do last minute salvaging, said Strauss.”I strongly feel that all the six subjects in the series interconnect,” said Strauss. “Properly reading the text will help test-taking, etc. etc.”The Sam Center has had close to 300 students participate in the study skills class this year. “We give students study skills assessment before the class starts and after it ends,” said Strauss, “According to our data, it does appear that study skills are improving.”I developed this program while I was at the SHSU Counseling Center,” she said. “We ran data to see if it was a good program or not and it appeared the students’ study skills improved drastically.”Dr. Pamela McManus, interim director of Sam Houston Counseling Center, said that study skills are something that all students need. The center put out “How to Survive College” brochures, one being a study skills lesson. The study skill lesson is an issue that all students will address at one time or another, said McManus.The three major problems students have with studying are: not studying enough, wasting time with studying and having trouble getting ready to study, according to information provided by the Sam Houston Counseling Center. In order to avoid these problems, students should establish a schedule, allocating more time for the most difficult classes and making sure to allow for recreational and social activities.The information provided by the Counseling Center also recommends that a student should start studying for 10- 15 minutes at a time and then build up to longer periods of time 15-minute increments during the freshman year, 20 minutes during sophomore, 25 minutes for juniors and 30-minute increments for seniors. Take breaks when studying. According to the SHSU Counseling Center information, the average attention span for one task is 20 minutes. Students are recommended to study small portions of material at a time, take a break and then study another 20 minutes.Some type of self-reward after the studying is complete is also suggested by the Counseling Center information.For more information on study skills sessions, contact the Sam Center at 294-4444 or visit its Web site at http://www.shsu.edu/~counsel.