How to Prevent Failing A Class

It happens. Sometimes a class just kicks you right in the head, and your midterm grade is a clear sign that you need help before the end of the semester. Here are some tips on how to improve your grade.
1. Talk to your professor or T.A. Depending on how big or small your class is, it may be harder to meet one-on-one with your professor, but be sure to check their office hours. If they are just too busy then be sure to talk to the T.A., who is usually able to provide extra help.
2. Visit your school’s tutoring center. Many colleges and universities offer free help to their enrolled students, though someone from your specialty area may not be available at all times. Be sure to check your school’s website to see when someone from the academic area you need help in will be available.
3. Enlist the help of the top student in class. Usually this person is easy to identify, and if they seem friendly and open enough to it, then ask to sit next to them in class and even compare notes. Your problem may be as simple as having someone fill in the gaps from the lecture you may have missed.
4. Check out online resources, including videos. In your textbook there is usually a link to the publisher’s website, which may have sample notes, additional readings for deeper comprehension, sample tests, or perhaps even videos.
5. Talk to others who took the class before. Do you know someone who took that class last semester? How did they study? Do they still have their notes? What were some important concepts they understood and can explain to you in their own words? Sometimes having a friend or acquaintance explain the hard concept in terms you understand in a more comfortable environment than a lecture hall or classroom will make your mind more receptive to the information.
6. If all else fails, speak to your academic advisor. An “F” will be a blemish on your transcript, so make sure before that happens you talk to your advisor. Is there a class just a level below that you can take to build a better foundation? Can another class fulfill whatever requirement you were trying to complete? An academic advisor will be best able to guide you through what you need to complete in order to graduate and what to do if you just can’t seem to do well in one area.
There is also always the option of opting for a minor instead of a major if some of the advanced classes in a certain discipline are too advanced. But if you do decide to stick with the class then be sure to utilize all the resources available to you to make the grade!

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