It's GPA saving season!! You know; the wonderful last month of school where you realize your grades are not too hot and all the work you've been putting off is finally due. But fear not! You're not in this alone, because chances are, a majority of students are feeling the pressure just like you and me. But here are some tips to help bring that GPA back from the brink, and maybe next semester they'll help you keep it from ever getting there.
Go to office hours.
Even if your professor seems like a bad teacher in class, spending some one on one time with him may have a different outcome. It can be scary, but this is the person that knows the material and creates the exam. Plus, showing a little interest can go a long way. If your professor doesn’t offer office hours, or you don’t feel that they’re helpful, seek out your TA. This is a student who has already taken the class and done well, so they can help you from the perspective of a fellow student. But be warned. If you show up to office hours without going to class and you know absolutely none of the material, you will likely find them unhelpful.
Find a study group.
This one can also be a little daunting because it might require reaching out to people you don’t know, but study groups are a really great way to learn. Everyone brings different skills and tricks to the table. You might learn a pneumonic device you’ve never been taught before, or someone might have a really great quizlet made that you can study from. Bouncing ideas off of other people who are learning the same material as you are great to help get clarity on difficult subjects. Plus, it’s always more fun than sitting alone.
Start pre-planning time to study.
If you don’t already use Google Calendar, you should. I, myself, was quite the skeptic, but my opinions are forever changed. Google calendar lets you plan out every second of your day and can also send you reminders, making sure you don’t miss that meeting or interview, or even class. If you plan out time to study and review after each class, while the information is still new, you’ll learn little by little instead of cramming everything in a few days before the exam. Plus, if you schedule it just right, you can get everything done during the week and have weekends full of coveted free time.
Use the services offered by your school.
A lot of schools offer a variety of services to help students succeed academically. Free tutoring, group tutoring, review sessions, the writing center, and supplemental instruction are just a few of the ways colleges look to help their students do well. No university wants to see students do poorly, and not nearly enough people make use of the services that are offered for free. It can be intimidating, but it’s better to ask questions and seek help than to let your grades suffer.
Stop going out so much.
I love to go out and have a good time as much as the next college student, but if you’re trying to save your GPA, it might be time to consider cutting back. Skip that Thursday party in favor of some much-needed library time, and you’ll be better prepared for your exam and ready to party hard on Saturday or sleep in on Sunday. Plus, no one is productive when dealing with a hangover.
Go to sleep at a reasonable time.
Sleep is so important. More important than anyone realizes. It keeps both your mind and your body in good shape and ready to work efficiently. If you go to bed at 3 am every morning, you’re setting your body and your mind up for fatigue and lack of focus. Do yourself a favor and call is quits around midnight. You’ll feel a lot better the next day.
College is hard. Finals are hard. Maintaining a solid GPA alongside a solid social life is hard. Hopefully, with a few simple tips, we can all keep our GPAs high and have fun at the same time, because as much as we want college to be one big party, learning is supposed to be our first priority.