## Things to do if you're stuck

The college provides a bunch of terrific resources; click on the big link below for a list of particularly useful ones. If you're feeling desperate or out of control, there is free counselling available; click here for more info.

- When reading your notes or the textbook, if a page
takes you less than 20 minutes, you probably didn't
read it actively enough.
After each example, after every proof, close your
reading and try to reconstruct it from memory. You will
probably not be able to.

- Force yourself to generate questions, both of me
and of yourself. For example, one can ask about any
potential
ambiguity in a definition. (π is the ratio of the
circumference of a circle to its diameter.

- The best way to do this is to try to explain to
someone what happened in lecture (you don't need to
go into gory detail -- just enough to get the point
across). A worse, but still OK, alternative is to
(actively!) read over your lecture notes.

- There are several reasons for this. For one thing,
there are only so many hours on a given day which can
be productively used for creative thought. Second, if you
work a
little bit every day, you potentially run across
conceptual difficulties much earlier. This gives you more
chances to talk to me / your TAs / other students.
Moreover, this gives more time to reflect on some of
the more challenging questions. Also, when you have a
whole day ahead of you all devoted to one task, it's
easy to fall into the trap of thinking you're not in
any rush, and to start procrastinating. By contrast,
if you only have an hour or two to work on math,
you will automatically be more focused.