One of the most common things that you will hear in college is that you need to graduate on time with your bachelor's degree. When people say "on time," they mean that you need to stay in college for four years. Some students are so focused on following a specific timeline that they become fixated on doing whatever means necessary to graduate on time.
There are several reasons why others believe that you have to graduate on time. A couple arguments include, "If you don't graduate on time, you have to pay more tuition," or "You are in school longer." I agree with other students who say that you have to pay more tuition if you don't graduate on time. However, if you have a scholarship or you're willing to pay more student loans, then this isn't as much of a problem.
The real problem is that even though a lot of students think that it's important to graduate on time, they forget about the real reason for going to college. It's not about turning graduation into a competition or race for who can get their degree the fastest. It's about getting a good GPA and finding a major that matches the career that you want to have.
There is no set time limit for when you need to get your degree. Some students will complete four years of college for their bachelor's degree and then need to go back to school after they find out that they were in the wrong major. If they had stayed in college longer rather than hurrying to graduate on time, they may have avoided having to go back to college a second time.
I see no problem with not being able to graduate on time. From what I've heard from other students, it's almost impossible to graduate on time for most majors. The number of courses that you are required to take for the Miami plan alone is enough to overwhelm you. Then when you add the courses you need for your major, especially for majors such as education or engineering, it can become very overwhelming.
I am a senior in college, and I am planning on going an extra year in order to graduate with my bachelor's degree. However, I don't see it as the end of the world if I need to take an extra year because as long as I graduate with a good GPA and finish all of my classes, then I don't see it as a problem.
In addition, college can be hard, especially if you are taking hard courses. I had to take calculus one year, and it was the hardest course that I've ever had to take. I had to shorten the number of courses I was taking during the semester so that I could focus on finishing that one hard course.
Some students cannot graduate on time because they may need to retake a difficult course in order to get a better grade. A lot of students will go into a class and at first not be prepared for the difficulty or teaching methods of the professor. However, when they go a second time, they are usually more prepared and do better academically.
There are some students that are so fixated on graduating on time that they will graduate in four years but have a horrible GPA because they refused to retake a class that they should have probably retaken. I would much rather go an extra year to get a better GPA than graduate on time with a bad GPA.
In addition, when you get a job, it won't matter if you graduated on time. Most people who are hiring could care less about whether you graduated in four years or not. They're going to focus on whether you have the credentials needed for the job.
Some students also like to take their time while they're in college to decide what they want to do with their futures. Not every student knows what they want to major in when they start out, so they will often explore a few majors before they come to a final decision. According to Penn State, an estimated 75 percent of students change their major at least once before graduation.
So, to anyone who believes that graduating on time is more important than achieving a good GPA, you should realize that graduating on time isn't as important as what you think. Trust me, the world will still move on if you graduate one year late.
Yes, having to go to college one more year isn't always ideal. But if graduating after an extra year or two is what you need to be successful, then don't worry about another person's opinion. Just go ahead and take the extra year if you need to and don't worry too much because as long as you finish your courses successfully, that's all that should matter.