9 Steps to A Great College GPA
Whether high school was a piece of cake or not, college is a whole new game. As an adult, a perfect GPA or a barely passing GPA is totally up to you. And an amazing GPA will require focus and a game plan.
It’s time to start mapping out your path to a high college GPA.
1. Create a study schedule
Whether high tech or a paper planner, keeping track of the important dates in your schedule will help keep track of deadlines and upcoming exams. Sometimes, it’s even helpful to add a notification a week before the big test or research paper.
2. Handwrite your notes
Although usually slower than typing, notes seem to stick in the brain longer when they’ve been handwritten. Handwriting notes also keeps the brain more deeply engaged in the class lecture, even if a few doodles do show up in the margins.’
3. Read through your notes before getting sleep
Before going to sleep, skim through your class notes. Although it might seem weird, studies show that the brain stores recent thoughts into long term memory during sleep. So during the week, try to get to bed at a consistent time, add reading your notes to the bedtime routine, and shoot for 7-8 hours of sleep. Get those winks in!
4. Just keep running
Believe it or not, exercise also helps in maintaining the body, mind, and ultimately grades. Set aside time to join a workout group or a pickup game of soccer, basketball, or football. Since the body and brain are connected, exercise can help students perform better in academics, too.
5. Ask for help
Rather than suffering for weeks trying to figure out that mathematical conundrum or that scientific anomaly, reach out to a professor, a teacher’s assistant, a fellow student, on-campus center, or a tutor for help. The sooner that frustrating concept is understood, the better the upcoming test results will be. Don’t wait to ask for help.
6. Get to class
Although this seems like a no-brainer, students don’t realize that good grades are often related to class attendance. Some professors give more information in the class for upcoming tests and provide extra examples. Class is also the best place for asking questions when something isn’t making sense and getting immediate clarification.
7. Create a study station
Working on homework and studying in a noisy, crazy place like a dormitory room might not be the best scenario for deep concentration. Find a place on or off campus that creates the perfect study environment for you. Obviously, the library and computer labs are a great place for studying and you can even book study rooms for complete privacy or a group study session.
8. Don’t ignore the little assignments
Figuring out how little needs to be done to get the best possible grade for all the homework, papers, and exams get easier with practice. To reach the highest GPA possible, push yourself to do even the smallest assignments and the extra credit options- they can definitely add up. They may not save you from a failing grade, but they can boost an already good one.
9. Motivate yourself
Keeping a goal in mind for any difficult endeavor helps with keeping priorities on track to achieve that one goal. When a test or project becomes overwhelming, remembering that goal can motivate you to push through the hard stuff. Ask yourself, “What’s motivating me to get a good GPA?” Make sure the answer will challenge you to work hard.
Even incorporating only a few of these steps into a college schedule can help any GPA improve. But for best results, use all these steps. And say hello to the Dean’s List and graduating with honors!