7 Life Points for Today’s College Students

7 Life Points for Today’s College Students
  • Opening Intro -

    College is a big part of many young adults' lives, but its importance sometimes is magnified at the expense of everything else.

    The four years or so you spend on campus will soon be over, leaving you prepared for the workforce.


Getting there means handling life’s challenges along the way including the following points.

1. Time marches on. If you’re a freshman student, it can seem as if you have all the time in the world to complete your studies. In reality you have just four years to get everything done if you want to graduate with your class. You can still have your fun, but never allow your leisure pursuits to trump your academic pursuits.

2. Make the grade. Achieving a “C” grade may be sufficient for some students, but it shouldn’t be for you. Aiming for a “B” grade or higher will keep your grade point average up and qualify you to receive dean’s list or presidential recognition. Sure, sometimes too much weight is put on the GPA, however it is a three-digit score that employers and grad schools look at closely.

3. Challenge yourself. There is no better person to challenge you then you. You know what it takes to get by, but getting by never got a person anywhere. It is best to take a full academic load while in college and add an extra class here or there, perhaps in a bid to complete a double major. Also consider participating in a club, completing an internship, and studying abroad. A part-time job can be beneficial too, especially if it augments your major. By challenging yourself, you’ll learn more and be more marketable upon graduation.

4. Attack with abandon. You’re not going to like or do as well in every class. Some classes will be a breeze, while other classes may make you question your sanity, your choice of a major or even your college decision. Pour your most energy into your high priority classes and less energy into your lowest priority classes. Never allow one class to pull you down — make the grades you need elsewhere especially for your major.

5. Learn it the first time. You’ve seen amongst your classmates and likely have seen it in yourself: it takes more than one lesson or study period for you to learn your assignments. And that is the problem: if you do not absorb material from the onset, then you’ll waste time and will need to devote extra time to studying. This will affect your grades and place unneeded stress on you. If you do not understand something while in class, then ask. Ask during class or seek clarification once the class has ended.

6. Commit it to memory. You can learn something, but you may not retain it for long. You not only want to learn something for a test, but you should acquire knowledge with an eye toward applying it throughout your life. If you have difficulty remembering something, create a pattern to help you absorb what you hear. One popular way is by creating an acrostic — using the first letters of keywords to form a word that represents something. You may be using acrostics without even realizing it. For instance, FIFO stands for First In, First Out — an accounting term. Create acrostics to associate them with what you’re learning and then unpack it to define it.

7. Reward yourself! All study and no fun makes for a very dull college student. If you nail points one through six, then you’re in a great position to pursue the seventh point: have fun! Sure, you’re attending college to learn, but you should also be enjoying the experience. Make friends. Go to sporting events. Watch movies. Go camping. Your down time can help your up time, enabling you to approach your studies relaxed and ready to take on your next academic challenges.

Life Considerations

If you find yourself stuck at any point in college, then reach out to your advisor for help. Your college also provides career, health, and psychological services, benefits just waiting for you to appropriate as needed.

See AlsoCollege Scholarships: December 2013 Edition


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Categories: Study Tips