Last semester has already ended but the effects of a poor show are still there. Bad grades can be discouraging and some bad memories of last semester can adversely affect your next semester too. Right now you are pondering over your bad grades and thinking about what could have been done to score higher marks. Well, this over-thinking can be counterproductive, so stop sulking over spilled milk and start planning for the next semester from now on. You have ample time, and we have jobs for you to keep you busy till your next semester begins.
Be honest with yourself
For students life is not easy, it was never meant to be. When you are studying in college and university, you are at your growing phase. Bad grades should not always be seen as a bad start. Anytime you can make things better. In this blog
, we will teach you ways of getting over this bad phase of your life.
But the first thing first, you need to start with is evaluating why you are stuck with poor grades. Last semester, were you stuck with too many assignments? Is it a constant pattern or just a stroke of luck? One bad semester can happen because of a single wrong move. Ask yourself if it is repetitive; semester after semester incident or just a random occurrence. Try to get answers to, what was different last semester? Why did classes seem more difficult? Did you take up a different study habit? Was it procrastination or too much academic pressure? What caused the downfall? You need to take your time out to process these questions so that you can come up with a logical explanation of what has gone wrong and what you cannot control in this semester too.
Focusing on things that are not in your control can disturb your emotional well-being. On the other hand, concentrating on what you can change and control, especially like what course to choose and how to maximise your strength and necessary deviations in your study habits will offer better outcome this time.
Scoring high in every semester requires more than just attending lectures regularly or visiting the library to complete assignments on time. Are you juggling job and university? If your answer is a yes, then you need to think of ways for cutting back the working hour or need to manage more time for your study at least until your grades get back on track. Achieving good grades requires immense self-discipline, motivation and dedication. Are you ready to make sacrifices? Be honest, when you answer this question to yourself.
Bring down the stress level
This stands as No. 2 on our list for some obvious reasons. It’s because you immediately need to stop over-thinking and start reflecting systematically on your wrong moves of last semester.
“It’s hard to make up your bed while you’re still sleeping in it. Hard to make up your mind for the same reason” ~ Robert Brault
Therefore, until you successfully bring down your inner tension, you will not be able to think of possible reasons with a cool head.
According to Peter Gray, PhD, a research professor at Boston College, increasing number of students especially young adults are suffering from emotional breakdown at much higher rates than in the past. He has pointed out some reasons for the increasing emotional fragility of university and college students, in a post named Causes of Students’ Emotional Fragility: Five Perspectives published in Psychology Today. He mentioned five distinct reasons of higher rate of emotional distress in students; the prominent one is excessive pressure created on them by parents and teachers to get good marks.
Do not let others’ expectation act like a negative catalyst. You need to stop yourself from being over committed towards your goal. Moreover, prioritising your tasks and breaking a bigger task into smaller one can actually benefit you in the long run.
Know your learning curve
What more you can do to save your GPA from sinking in the next semester? Once you are done with the honest post-mortem of the last semester, you will have a better understanding of your flaws. In addition, you will be able to clearly differentiate what you can control and what is beyond your reach. Let go of any circumstances that you cannot have power over, but you need to turn your wishes into your goals, for which you plan and about which you are going to be true to yourself about your drawbacks. One semester does not decide your fate. Bouncing back from the rocky start is definitely possible.
Since everyone is unique, no common, learning style can work for everyone. Some students are good at memorising; some others have a mechanical mind and cannot grasp any concept without visualising the idea in their mind, so they learn with the help of illustration and reflection. Study hours vary from person to person as well. The learning curve is also dissimilar for different individuals. So in order to improve your grades, you need to identify your comfort zone.
You need to know how your mind prefers to cope with difficult lessons. Does it take ten pages a day or its catch up only with two? Even if you are a slow learner, you do not need to be frustrated and over stress your mind in order to take up others’ learning curve. You just need to muster all your patience and give your mind the time it takes to conceptualise a tough matter. Do not get indulged into senseless competition with others. Do not push yourself too hard as that may lead up to making you feel burned out just before the examination starts.
Done with self-reflection? Now move on and get closer to your professor
Backbenchers have earned this name due to their usual sitting spot one year after another. If you are serious about scoring high in the next semester, you need to start sitting in front seats. Professors can help you with lots of stuff, like formats they are expecting to see in your assignments, they can give you useful tips on from where to get more information about the particular subject matter.
You can frequently go to office hours with your queries. By talking to them, you will be able to anticipate what is likely to be in the test. Always prepare your notes from the scratch and not with what is written on reference reads, but with what your professor is emphasising on. His words while giving lecture can be your way out from any sort of academic mess.
Control the clock
Although it becomes too obvious to mention that in order to deal with tough subject matters, you always need to plan how you are going to spend your time. Do whatever it takes to make a planner, days before starting the next semester. However, do not be too rigid while makingplans; you can always make necessary changes in your planner. Your planner needs to have everything written in it, like when you are going to visit the library, which day of the week is your group study day, etc. With a planner at your side, you will gradually learn to manage increasing workload.
However, while making the planner, do not set impossible goals for you. You need to set some realistic objectives while managing time for your social life as well. On the internet, you will get plenty of post on how to manage time, try to take tips from there. Studying with precision does not mean ditching your social life forever; you can still have time to go out with your friends. As long as you manage your time wisely, you are good to go. Earning good grades is all about balance.
Prioritise your task
There is also a deadline for every task if there is not; you need to set a date for everything. When you are dealing with assignments, try to prioritise on what you need to work on first. For the bigger task, try to set aside a significant chunk of time and then work on rest of the tasks. Don't forget to plan your study breaks those are essential to make your brain more productive.
Therefore, from the very first day of your next semester, you need to be serious about managing time for every task and prioritise important task before start working on easier one, so that you can work on tough assignments with a fresh mind.
Get rid of the mid-year slump
Some courses will ignite that rare spark in your mind; will make you confident about your future, while some others courses will make you wonder what to have for your lunch. You blankly stare at the professor, at the clock, at the board, at your notebook. As the time flies gradually, you lose interest in your course and everything related to it.
Next time when you find yourself becoming bored with your subject, always try to find a way to relate it to your interest. Once you find what interests you, that semester will be over even before you know it. Another tip to score high in the next semester is staying motivated and avoid mid-year slump by finding what excites you and what does not.
Some Parting words
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”
- Albert Einstein
This post comes down to two main points:
Bad grades aren’t the end of the world. It can happen to anyone
You need to become resilient to your failure and adopt new ways, which will help you to adopt critical skills to do good in the next semester.
At the end of each academic year, schools take time to honour the highest GPA, and this gives a false impression to young students that grades mean everything in the real world. It is not at least when you are in your high school. However, when you are a university student, grades shape your very near future.
Do not be one of those persons for whom one failure leads to fading out every good thing in life. Setbacks are common, and everyone faces it. You just need to adapt lessons from your breakdown and hit back with double force. As long as you do not give up, failure will just make your smarter, stronger, and more ready for the future.
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