Be the Best


What do the best college students and teachers do?  Find tips below on how to improve learning from the author and renowned academic Ken Bain in his books What the Best College Teachers Do and What the Best College Students Do. (Both books by Ken Bain are available to borrow from the Academy library, 180 New Montgomery St., 6th floor).


  • Get yourself as organized as possible.  Maintain a calendar to plan out times to work on projects before they are due.  
  • Think about connections: classes to classes, classes to previous classes and classes to life and life skills.  
  • Think about solutions that were developed to solve industry problems. Think of better solutions.
  • Keep a notebook to write down ideas and questions that come to you while studying and working on projects or homework.  
  • Be curious and critical of ideas; ask more questions in class of your teacher and classmates.
  • Instead of memorizing, talk about ideas and terms until you can explain them as well as your instructors.
  • Enjoy the process of learning by allowing your mind to examine concepts and principles covered in class.  


Students, for more help with reviewing work, study skills and class projects, contact Student Academic Support (SAS):


Phone: 415.618.3917

Text ARC number: 415.895.0272

79 New Montgomery St., 3rd Floor

Hours: Monday–Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.,

Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.



  • Be as clear as possible about directions for assignments, pass them out in writing or email them.  
  • Help students organize their lives by letting them know about deadlines at the beginning of the semester and showing them how to set-up a production schedule.  
  • Ask them to document their ideas and work processes by turning in drafts and/or maintaining a journal.  
  • Ask them questions about how the ideas, principles and concepts you are teaching are connected to each other, connected to past and future classes, connected to other subjects, and connected to the real world.  
  • Ask them to identify problems that occurred in the past or currently exist in your industry.  Ask them to problem solve and create solutions.
  • Have fun exploring and debating the topics and ideas with your students.


Instructors, for more ideas or help with implementing the above ideas, contact Faculty Development:


Phone: 415.618.3855

The Cannery 2801 Leavenworth St. Suite 305

Hours: Monday–Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.