College is just around the corner for the hundreds of thousands of students who are graduating this year. Transitioning from high school to college academics can be challenging for many (More homework! Longer papers! Lecture notes! Stiffer competition! Fewer grades!), so here are some tips to make the grade.
First of all, remember this: You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to get GOOD GRADES!
To do well in college, perform your best, and get the most out of each class/assignment, it’s important to understand the secrets to academic achievement:
- The first success ingredient is good planning. This involves making a study calendar a few days out. You can find a reproducible homework and study planner on our website. Take an inventory of what you have planned for each week, including social events, and make sure you have enough time carved out to fully complete assignments and studying.
- This means staying committed to your study schedule, becoming a skilled time manager, and finding a study environment that works best for you. You can use the reproducible daily schedule on our website to help with this. Come prepared and, ideally, sit in the front row (it has a way of keeping you awake during those 8:00 a.,m. lectures!). Complete all of your required readings well in advance so you’ll have ample time to review and review and review. Remember, reps are the key to recall! Click here to read about my “Rainbow Highlighter Study Method” (step 3 in the post).
- Deliver what your audience (i.e., teacher or professor) is looking for (play close attention to syllabi and grading rubrics) and enter your exams with supreme confidence that you’re prepared to excel. Be rested, alert, and ready to go. Fuel your body with what it needs for optimum performance and make sure you get enough sleep. And, when you have multiple essay questions, start with the easy one to build brain momentum. It’ll also give you more time to contemplate answers to the more difficult ones.
If you can fully appreciate the need for planning, preparing, and performing, you’ll be well on your way to achieving repeatable academic success. (That’s the best part, adapting these three P’s into your regular study schedule means that you can continuously do well.) In this increasingly competitive world, academic performance is critical!
How have YOU helped the students in your life become organized and disciplined studiers? Or, if you are a student, what have you found works for you? Share your ideas with our online community of parents, educators, and youth organizations; we’d love to hear from you!
Photo: Freedigitalphotos.net, by Ambro