Posts published on January 11, 2018
BY MARTHA KARN
Should college students have credit cards? The answer depends on who you ask. Some worry that credit cards make it too easy for students to spend beyond their means and rack up debt. Others believe credit cards enable students to learn about fiscal responsibility and build good credit. Ultimately, the right answer depends on you, the student.
As long as you can handle this type of responsibility and not get over your head with credit card debt before you even graduate, having a credit card can be very helpful, especially in emergencies. But, you need to make sure that you are getting the right credit card for you. Today we are going to look at some tips on how to choose a student credit card. Let’s get started.
Check Your Eligibility: There was a time when credit card companies were practically begging students to sign on with them, and a lot of students who weren’t ready for this type of responsibility were getting into a lot of credit trouble. Now, thanks to the Credit Card Act of 2009, credit card companies can’t market near campuses. What’s more, applicants must be 21 or older, or have a co-signer, and provide proof of income.
Foreign Transaction Fee: If you are going to be traveling, it is a good idea to look for a credit card that doesn’t charge a foreign exchange fee. Some cards charge as much as an additional three percent per transaction on purchases made in different currencies. If you are studying abroad, make sure that your card doesn’t charge this fee, because it can really add up over time.
Credit Monitoring Tools: Look for a credit card issuer that also offers credit monitoring tools, including free credit scores and credit monitoring. Even if you aren’t planning on getting a credit card right away, it is still a good idea to use some of these free tools so you can keep an eye on your credit rating. If you aren’t eligible for a credit card now, using these tools can help you to build your credit so you will be eligible later on. Companies that offer these tools tend to be the best credit cards for students.
Look for No Annual Fee: The rewards you’ll accumulate with your credit card probably won’t offset a steep annual fee. So look for a card that doesn’t charge one. Chances are, you’ll find a solid no-annual-fee credit card that works well for you. Other fees add up, too, though. So do diligent research to make sure you the card you select has among the lowest total fees, such as balance transfer fees, cash advance fees, expedited payment fees, etc.
Good Grade Incentives: Did you know that some credit companies offer incentives to students for getting good grades? Some companies offer cash bonuses, while others may offer such perks as a higher line of credit once you have made a certain amount of payments on time. Some may even offer to lower the interest rate. The more rewards, the better, as long as they aren’t just smoke screens to get you to take a high-interest credit card that you will never be able to pay off.
There are Other Options
Maybe you aren’t ready to have a credit card, do not want one, or are not eligible. There are always other options to having your own credit card. For instance, some credit companies will allow you to be an authorized user on a parent’s credit card. Potentially, this could be a good way of building your credit. Better yet, you aren’t legally liable for the monthly bill (though you’ll certainly be responsible to your parents). Alternatively, you may want to look into getting a secured credit card — a card that has no actual credit, only money that you deposit into the account.
Martha Karn develops online educational courses and writes for students.
BY ALAINE GORDON
Times are hard and it is not always easy to dive deep into your pockets and spend money on a paid tutor. Students are not rich and can most of the time not afford these kinds of services.
If you are in need of some help in any type of subject, but at the same time you do not have the money to spend, here are 5 ways to learn without having to spend a dime.
- Study Groups
If you haven’t thought of this already, then this idea could be of great help to both you and your friends. Study groups are a great way of socializing and getting to know what you and your friends know best and what you need to focus more on.
Create a common chat and let your friends know that you would like to start a study group on various subjects. The group can consist of however many people you like and the common goal is to better understand the subject.
For the people that already are good at this subject, repeating and explaining it to others can be a great way to make sure they own it and for the ones that are not so good, it can be a way to learn and better understand it.
- Khan Academy
Khan academy is one of the best online tutoring services that offers free courses on a plethora of different topics from math to biology to arts and humanities. It is not only meant for learners but also for teachers and parents too. It is also available in many languages!
You can find courses on subjects for all ages and education levels and the only thing you have to do to learn is watch the free videos they offer that explain the subject and help you learn easily and effectively. When you are done with that part, there are some very nicely made tests that you can take to make sure that whatever you heard you learnt it too.
- Course Teaching Assistants
Course Teaching Assistants or otherwise known as T.A.s are a great asset of many subjects that students rarely use. These are either undergraduate students who have passed your subject with an excellent grade or graduate students who are either taking a masters or PhD program in the same field as your studies.
These people are in contact with your professor and it is very common that you find their contact information online on the course’s outline. You can get in touch with them for free and ask them for help and guidance on the subject that you find difficult.
On top of that, the Teaching Assistants can also most of the time be the people who help your professors grade your assignments, so you might want to keep them close not only to help you better understand that said subject but also to ask for help with any essay writing problems and exams.
Many people do not know this, but Youtube can actually be of great help when it comes to helping you with a subject. You can find a lot of different instructional videos on many different subjects and the best part is that if you can’t easily understand how one person is explaining something, you can easily find another one.
The only problem with Youtube though is that you can’t always know if what you’re learning is right. People on the internet can claim to be whatever they like and on a website like Youtube, where anyone can upload a video, you can’t be certain of the quality.
The best way to make this work is to ask someone who has knowledge on the subject to take a look at the video that you believe is the best. It will only take them a couple minutes and you will be able to study and learn without spending anything.
Udemy much like Khan Academy is an online service that provides plenty of online courses on a variety of different subjects. Demy is also available in many languages and also offers the assistance of instructors. The only difference between them is that Khan Academy is completely free.
On the other hand, Udemy mainly provides paid services. Do not worry though, as there is a good variety of free online courses provided by them in order to help you get a taste of their services. You can use this to your advantage and get some knowledge on the topics that you need.
Udemy is possibly providing a larger variety of topics than Khan Academy, but their courses are mostly targeting professionals than just overall learning for people of all ages. In any case, give the website a try and search for what you need to learn; you might be able to dive deeper into the subject and have a better understanding of it in the end.
No Need to Spend to Learn
If you are on a tight budget, these are just some of the ways you can find to get help with your difficult college subjects. There is no need for you to spend money on tutors to learn since there is such a large abundance of free knowledge online.
Get to trying the methods mentioned before and try seeing what works best for you. In the end, you are bound to find a way that will help you learn effectively.
Alaine Gordon is young and talented content manager. She has been writing professionally since 2010 about almost everything, starting from psychology and to the finance. Alaine Gordon graduated from the University of Colorado with B.A. in Journalism, 2011. She is open-minded, creative person who loves to make the people smile. Her credo is ‘Life is a fun enterprise’. In her free time she loves traveling, reading science fiction and knitting. Her huge dream is to visit every single country in the world.