How to Do Well in College

College life can become a great struggle because students have to balance school, a social life, and sometimes a job as well. The following steps could help the grades of college students.


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    Go to class. Why else would you pay for tuition or pay taxes for financial aid? Don't make excuses, just go. Even when you don't feel like it. Just go. You might get participation points, and the professor will also get to know you better. It will keep you in the flow of the class, and prepare you for anything that might come along. Many classes have in class assignments, pop quizzes, and case studies that only could be taken in class, if you are not there, you might lose points. Besides that, paying attention in class does wonders to your memory. It is never the same as revising it on your own. Some things are best seen, heard and noted down.
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    Stay organized. College is all about multitasking. Planners can really help you to balance homework, due dates and tests. You should try to get your work done early, then you will have less stress. Some colleges have an online learning tool to help you keep track of assignments and the like. If you don't like the internet, try to use the good old assignment notebook. You can buy one at a WalMart or local dollar store for cheap. A binder is the best way to keep your stuff organized.
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    Avoid bringing your laptop to class. Or, if you have to, make sure you only use it for the task at hand. A study has shown that students who did multiple things on a laptop during a lecture scored lower on a test compared to those who did not multitask. Likewise, students who were in direct view of someone multitasking on their laptop also scored lower on a test compared to those who were not. [1]
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    Be business-like about your education. If you had a job you would have to go to your job at 9 AM and stay there until 5PM. The rest of the day would be your own time. If you did the same thing in college, you would do great. Go to class, go to the library, study seriously, at 5pm put away the books and go home. It's that simple. Once in a while you might have to work late, just like at a real job, but in general if you were spending 40 hours a week attending to school you would be a Dean's List student. Act like a professional, adult person. Treat your college education as it's like on the job training.
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    Find your own best method of studying. Everyone studies differently. Some can study with a lot of noise and others want silence. Some like the library and some like to study with friends, or even outside. Studies show that studying with others is best but only if you actually work. They also show that people cannot multitask and performance suffers when you try two things at once.[citation needed] If you find your own ideal study method, your understanding and recall will improve, likely leading to better grades.
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    Balance work, school and social life. Many students start to mess up in college because they want to hang out with their friends every minute. There will always be time for partying in college. Pull yourself away from partying so that you can take care of business.
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    Use your time effectively and efficiently. Do not procrastinate on assignments. Try to make progress every day on what is assigned. For example, if you have a report due in 6 weeks, do not wait until 3 days before it's due to begin working on it. Instead, work on it every day for 30 to 60 minutes. Once you get into it, it will actually be enjoyable seeing the progress unfold versus being stressed out and worried about an important assignment that has been put off and whose due date continuously gets closer and closer
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    Be sure to take care of your health. Ancient Roman poet Juvenal said "una mente sana in un corpo sano" which means "a healthy mind in a healthy body". Join a sports team or exercise, don't overdo the junk food, and try to get as much sleep as possible. Not only will you feel better, you'll be able to think and learn better too.
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    Maintain 100% effort through semester. Some students start better than they finish. They do that in order to give themselves room to slack near the end of the semester, which can be a costly mistake. Push yourself to do your best on every assignment given out and make sure to check your syllabus to see which assignments are due when. Stay on top of your game and don't lose focus.
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    Always try to keep a positive attitude and have confidence.


  • Take notes and quickly review them from time to time. Try to pick out from your notes what you obviously do not know or what you are unfamiliar with. What took an hour to take notes on may only take 5 to 10 minutes to review.
  • When you're writing a paper, give yourself time to breathe. Some of your best ideas come when you give yourself a break. Nothing's worse than sitting at computer trying to think of something to write, and end up with nothing.
  • Take notes to give yourself confidence. Especially at the beginning you may find you have very little homework. However, it is vitally important to see at least some outcome from your class attendance to give you confidence. Take notes in every class and re write them when you get home. Make sure to date them and be consistent.
  • Be a fast writer because you have to take notes in class so you can study.
  • If you miss a class because you were ill or for some other reason, ask the teacher what material you missed and study it.
  • Seek out and take advantage of student support services such as tutoring, counseling, scholarships and services for students with disabilities. Don't wait to ask for help. You are paying for these services. Use them!
  • Consider studying in places that are agreeable and productive for you. For example, consider studying every day in a coffee shop after eating lunch.
  • If you're struggling at the end of semester, give yourself a reward at the end for completing it successfully.
  • When coming up on an exam, objectively evaluate what your weaknesses are and try to quickly get better in those areas that may be on the exam.
  • Take notes about important lectures.


  • Even if you only miss one day of your classes, you fall behind. So, try to show up to every class.

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