Despite our different academic capabilities, everyone has the ability to get good grades in college. This is important to take note of as grades are the measure of our college success. However, many college students achieve grades that are somewhat lower that what they are supposed to getting. This is brought about by two main factors, not using the right study methods and placing little importance to your academic work.
In this article, we have gone ahead to give tips on how to get better grades in college. They are:
- Make sure you attend as many classes as you can; Even if your professor is known to follow the textbook closely or could be one of those considered a little boring, your attendance will determine your grade. Here is why, Lectures and discussions help you understand the course content much better and many professors have attendance policies that could have a direct impact on your grade.
- During class attendance; Go beyond just attending and actively participate during class discussions and make sure to seek clarification during lectures if you don`t understand a subject matter. Also avoid activities that reduce attention for example texting and talking to your classmate.
One last point on this, try sitting close to the front, it`s common knowledge that those who do are the best students.
- Don’t overload; It`s never a good idea to take as many hours as the college allows. Take at most five courses each semester and only one major. This allows you to focus on the courses that interest you fully and will reduce your workload.
In any case, it’s better to get high scores across all your courses than having average scores across the many courses you will have taken.
- Note taking; Much of your professor lectures will form a major part of the material tested during midterms and finals. Be an active listener and take good notes. If he or she uses power point or writes down information, pay special attention to it and try following the outline given when making notes.
Maintain your notes in readable and organized form as you will have to study them later on as your course progresses.
- Use the textbook; This does not mean you buy all the textbooks assigned. If you are broke, one textbook will still be fine. The textbook supplements the lectures and discussions from class. When using it, make sure to go through the whole chapter unless told otherwise .That case study or exhibit you skip could form the basis of a test question carrying a huge percentage of the total scores.
You should also take notes and outline the material to get the most of what you are reading.
- Time management; Available time is mostly always not enough for students to accomplish every task. Procrastination is a major issue, and even those who do not could have problems in using the available time wisely. To achieve better results, try using these tips while planning your own schedule.
Tackle harder work first. The difficult work requires more time and meeting deadlines for all your assignments will be much easier.
Incorporate breaks. After a major task, always take a break involving a hobby, for example listening to music. This helps to maintain motivation to complete the tasks and refreshes you for the next bit of work.
Break large projects. In case you have a massive term paper, break it up into smaller chunks and assign suitable deadlines to each part.
Don`t overextend yourself. While clubs and other organizations are generally helpful to students, being involved in many clubs could be detrimental to your grade. This is due to inadequacy of time.
- Get involved in study groups; Study buddies always help in improvement of your grade so long as you involve both individual study and study groups. In case you did not grasp something while going through your work, try getting help from your colleague.
- Studying; No matter what the `A’ students tells you, to get a good grade, you have to study no matter how painful it can be. First establish your preferences. For instance, some study best in complete silence while for others, complete silence could result in them, let’s say dozing off after sometime.
Make sure you study early and often. Do this by breaking your study periods into shorter bits to allow time to absorb material before moving on.
- Tests; Obtain old copies to know what to expect .Also establish the content to be covered and the type of questions to be asked. Read the questions and instructions carefully to know what is being expected.
Pace yourself so as to finish the exam within the stipulated time and complete the most important questions first (those with higher point value)
- Remain focused; In many college courses, the timetable gets more tight at the end. With assignments due in the last month of the semester, a third test, a research or term paper and the cumulative final to be done in the last weeks. These form a huge chunk of your total scores and being focused throughout the semester helps.
- The “extras” If your course have review sessions, rewrites of papers and extra work at the end of the semester, try doing them as they can be a grade booster.
- Homework; they provide applications of learnt concepts, principles and methods of the filed to actual examples. In any case, there is little deviation of the questions` structures from those that come up on the bigger tests.
These guidelines should help achieve higher grades and if you are struggling in some aspect of the course, seek assistance from your professor or a college mate with better understanding on the concept.