Since my freshman year, I’ve been lucky enough to make the Dean’s List every semester, meaning I earn a 3.5 GPA or higher! It’s taken quite a lot of work and it wasn’t always easy, but with a little trial and error, I’ve been able to keep it up! If you’re looking to raise your grade, here are some tips on how I make the Dean’s List every semester!
Even though a due date for an assignment isn’t for another week, I set an early deadline for myself. For example, if I have a paper due on November 15th, I’m going to set my early deadline for November 13th just in case something comes up or I end up being so busy I can’t get it done. Unexpected things do come up and I can’t tell you how many times I’d wish I’d started an assignment sooner. By setting early due dates for myself I’m working ahead to get so much work done and making sure I’m not overwhelmed with work.
To get good grades, sometimes you have to make some tough choices. Do you go to that party, or do you stay at home and study for your test next week? It’s difficult to make those choices at times, but prioritizing your grades is something you have to do if you want a college degree. Saying no to those fun things sucks, but that doesn’t mean you have to do it all the time! Know what your limits are and if you don’t know a subject, make sure you make the right moves to learn it.
To-Do lists are my saint in this world and I couldn’t get by without them. Every morning I make a list of all the homework I haven’t done and all the other tasks I have to do. Throughout the day, I slowly cross them off as I complete it. These lists keep my priorities and homework in check and remind me of what all I need to get done and when. Even if you don’t use a planner, this helps me get my mind organized.
Make The Most Of Free Time
I have some awkward blocks between a lot of my classes. If you have a schedule like mine, use it to your advantage! After my Political Science class, I have an empty hour block of time before my next class. I use this time to print off any homework I need at the library, write a few blog posts, finish up some journal entries for classes. That’s an hour I used to complete so much work!
Read The Syllabus
The syllabus is your guide to success for all of your classes. This contains all of your class information, points possible, assignment schedule, everything! Keep this paper close because it will be your key to success. I still look at the syllabus for all of my classes and it’s now October! The information is still relevant this late in the semester so don’t just throw it away!
Want to make the most of your syllabus? Check out my post How To Effectively Use Your College Syllabus
Read The Grading Rubric
Another piece of paper that’s crucial in all your classes, is the grading rubric for assignments. This will tell you everything you’re being graded on for assignments and the points that each section is worth. Pay attention to this because this is your key to success. You may have a killer project, but if you didn’t follow the directions of the project, your grade is going to sink. I always, ALWAYS, check the grading rubric before I start my project and after to make sure I didn’t miss any key points.
Talk To Your Professors
This has to be my biggest tip for anyone looking to raise their grade. If you aren’t doing well in a class or you’re not understanding a certain aspect of it, talk to your professor! They are the one grading you and giving you the tests, so they’re bound to know something don’t you think? Before every test, I always make a point to go over the study guide with my professor just to make sure I understand every point.
I even ask them to review my essays before I submit them, and 100% of the time they’ve told me to add something to make my essay better. I got a better grade because of it! This has helped me so much through college so don’t be afraid to talk to them. They’re great people who want you to succeed.
Want to make the most of your professor’s time? Read my post Taking Advantage Of Your Professor’s Office Hours
Although your class may not require attendance, show up. They may be covering some topics in class that you aren’t seeing in the notes or online. One of my professors specifically gives us the answers to extra credit questions in class. The people who never go to class don’t get those answers! You could be missing out on some valuable information.
Look Over Your Notes
Repetition is crucial if you’re studying for a test or quizzes. By looking over your notes every day just for 15 minutes, you’re more likely to remember the information because you’re seeing the material multiple times. Looking at it all the night before won’t do you much good with helping you retain the information.
Studying was something I had a difficult time with my first semester because it was something I’d never had to do before. I took a lot of choir and journalism classes during high school so I never really had to elaborately study for a specific subject. When college hit I knew I had to learn fast, and looking over my notes just wasn’t going to cut it. I learned to look at the material in multiple different ways and to start studying EARLY. Studying the day before may work for some people but not all.
Need some new study methods? Check out my post Study Methods To Ace Every Kind Of Test
Over Prepare, Expect The Worst
When I know about an upcoming test, I expect the absolute worst. Short answer questions, essay questions, impossible multiple choice. So I over prepare. If I think I’ve studied enough, I haven’t. Expecting the worst encourages me to study the material from every angle so I know I can do well on whatever comes up.
Read The Readings
There is a lot of reading in college. So much to the point, my love of reading has died. However, just because the readings may be stupid doesn’t mean I don’t read them. No matter what the reading is, I read it. Even if it’s the same information as what is in your notes, you’re still seeing that information twice. There’s no way it can hurt you except maybe take up more time.
Know When To Turn Technology Off
My biggest distraction in this world is social media. I literally can’t get enough of it, meaning I check it every five minutes. Sometimes you just need to get rid of all distractions, whether it’s turning off your phone, or blocking all social media sites on your laptop. The more focused you are on the material, the more you can get accomplished.
What are some things you do that help you get good grades? Leave a comment below!