There is a strange balancing act that most students are forced to endure.
It’s the balance between school and everything else in life.
Most students want to do well in school. It’s nice to have grades that you’re proud of. At the very least, no one wants to get grades they’re embarrassed about. Good grades mean different things to different people though.
Grades can mean anything from:
- Better futures
- More time with friends
- A way to show off
- Less parental whining
- All kinds of good stuff
It’s not as easy as wanting good grades though.
Grades don’t come free. Typically, they cost time. You need to spend the time to study. You need to spend the time to work. You need to spend the time to organize. Good grades often require you invest some of your time.
How precarious is this balance though? Is there a way to get better grades without sacrificing all your time?
The answers are:
– Not all that precarious really
– You’re damn right there is 😀
How Hard Is This Balance
Students that are properly prepared for the curriculum they’re taking shouldn’t have to struggle to balance great grades with plenty of free time.
Colleges make crazy claims that students should study for 2 hours per credit hour. That means a full time student would need to treat their degree almost like a job.
Many survey based studies (that might as well have been done on napkins) conclude students study similar amounts of time. These studies virtually never control for the time the student is really studying versus when the student is texting their friend about how they’re so busy studying but totally want to go out partying later to see Katie… I mean totally… you know Katie, right? And how Katie is totally bangin’ and blah blah blah blah blah.
It’s sure as hell not studying for two hours when you’re barely doing anything related to the class.
Anyone that’s spent anytime on a campus without rose tinted glasses realizes these numbers are complete bs. The only way they have any credence is when you assume anything that remotely relates to school is considered studying. Maybe… MAYBE… if you include all homework, essays, and out of class work within that study time.
Doing well in school shouldn’t be a full time job. For most college students it’s a reasonably tough part time job. When a student knows what they’re doing with study strategies it can take closer to a dozen hours hours outside of class for a full-time student. (That number is super rough. Tough colleges can increase that number.)
If you don’t think you could work a full time job on the side then something is wrong. The two major culprits:
1. You’re studying wrong
That’s what this blog is all about trying to solve. By studying better you can spend less time studying and working for class while still seeing grade improvements.
2. You’re not properly prepared.
If you put a student that’s never taken Algebra into a Calculus, it’s inevitable they’d struggle. I’m willing to bet your problem isn’t that severe. If you’re struggling to know stuff you should already know then that’s a problem you need to address before expecting a reduction in your study time.
Improve Your Grades Without Spending More Time
This is what this blog is all about. Here are some of my personal favorite resources to lead you in the right direction.
- The Unfortunate Truth About Study Time
- Get Better Grades: 17 Scientific Strategies To Hack Studying
- How To Study A Textbook Without Banging Your Head Against It
- How To Tell You’re Not Really Studying
You do not need to sacrifice much time to get great grades.
To get top notch grades it gets a little bit more complicated.
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