12 Ways to Improve Your Academic Performance NOW
1. Talk to the professor.
a. Prepare a list of questions to ask or a list of problems with which you need help.
b. Ask what you are doing correctly, incorrectly & why.
c. Ask what more you can do to improve your performance. Don’t ask about extra credit, but ask what you can do to better understand the content or study strategies they would recommend.
2. Reach out to the Coastal Student Success Center at https://www.coastal.edu/studentsuccesscenter/.
a. Seek a tutor. Tutors may not be available in every subject, but can often be arranged for a number of subjects. Vistit https://www.coastal.edu/tutoring/ for a list of available tutors.
b. Be prepared with your course info, and notes, and be ready to discuss specifically the concepts with which you are struggling.
3. Go to class. If you are struggling, missing class only makes your struggles worse. Listen, take notes, and absorb what you can. (Even if you are lost!)
4. Assess your current study habits.
a. How much time are you studying, exactly? Be sure to do the minimum of 2x the credit hours of the class each week. Example: a four-hour class requires a minimum of eight hours per week of study!
b. What specific things are you doing during that time? Adjust as needed. If you are struggling, it may not be enough of the right thing.
c. What’s working in your other classes? Use those techniques in the class in which you are struggling. Make IMMEDIATE changes.
d. Are you studying where there are a lot of distractions? Study in a quiet room, at a desk without your phone!
5. Read it again. Three times if necessary. Try reading aloud. Take notes on what you are reading. Make flash cards. Color code terms or concepts.
6. Do 25-50 extra practice problems every night in Math. Build math muscle memory!
7. Try explaining it to someone else. This helps clarify what you really know and don’t know.
8. Create two sets of notes. One from a lecture and one from readings, or one from a lecture and one from a lab. Make the connection. How does one support the other and vice versa?
9. Create a mind map, concept web, or timeline. Does it help to see the big picture first?
10. Find a study buddy. Trade notes and practice quizzes, as well as discuss content.
11. Be diligent and disciplined. You may have to work harder than you ever have.
12. Talk to your advisor. Discuss all of your options and implications.
Gupta College of Science Advising Center, Science II Room 210