Back at school this year..? How to succeed this semester

Here are some points to keep in mind as you set the tone for the year…


1. Take advantage of opportunities and resources

It’s one thing to have to ACCESS to opportunities & resources, but another to actually USE them. Browse your school’s resources. Find ways to enhance, simplify, or change your academic experience. See what you need and adjust.

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A curious mind goes far.

2. Find new ways to study smarter

Reflect on what went well, and what needs changing. Find out your learning style and come up with a plan of approach.

Here’s a fun quiz to find YOUR learning style:

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What worked? What didn’t? Did procrastination get the better of you?

3. Check out One Class:

Save time, get course notes, study guides, and resources for your courses. Here’s the link…

Here’s a great technique to beat procrastination:

Refine your skills: Note taking, studying, researching, reading, writing, summarizing, etc.

4. Set academic goals

Set goals and figure out the best ways to achieve them. Hold yourself accountable.

Goals: Understanding more? Applying the knowledge? Creating your own ideas?

Here’s an amazing educator I’ve personally seen, who knows about setting academic goals:

Michael Mallery Jr.

I’m So Educated YouTube Channel

5. Do Things Differently

Health, Social Life, Finances, Relationships, Interests, Career? What are you bringing to the table that’s different?

What’s going to be different about this year?

More of this, less of that…

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6. Get outside your comfort zone

Growth comes from exposure.

Going outside your comfort zone means: trying something new, testing limits, and exploring the unknown. Intentionally seeking to go outside your comfort zone is a sign of courage, strength, and self-love. You don’t have to take huge strides at first, start small. Try, and build from there.

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Try new activities & take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves. If you see none, CREATE them.

7. Eliminate distractions

Find what distracts you and replace it with a new, positive habit.

If something is taking you away from your priorities, then it needs to be put aside.

To figure out if something is a distraction, ask yourself:

“Is _____________ helping me towards my goal(s)?”

If the answer is NO, then it needs to go.

Technology and Social Media are big distractors.

*Try: Set your device in Airplane Mode while you study, to avoid distractions.

8. Manage your time

Focus on the QUALITY of study time, not QUANTITY. Find ways to make your studying more EFFICIENT. Take advantage of pockets of time. Prepare NOW, to benefit LATER during exam time. Use your time for essential activities, all unessential activities can wait.

Is there a better way to study? How can I prepare TODAY to make learning and studying easier TOMORROW?

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9. Do life planning

As you progress in your academics, take some time to think about the context of your life. Where you see yourself in the future? Think about your next course of action. Start searching for opportunities, and visualize where you may fit in.

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Think about the direction of your life.

10. Deepen friendships | Create new ones

Think about how friends play a role in the direction your life. Reflect and figure out ways to approach relationships. People have an impact on your state of mind, make sure that state of mind is a positive one.

Are the people you’re surrounding yourself positive or negative? How can you give to your friend(s)? Are there new people you want to meet?

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11. Find a mentor

Mentors can enhance your life, and share with you valuable knowledge, wisdom, and fulfillment. Anyone can be a mentor, we all have something to learn from one another.


By Hendrix Taylor
Hendrix Taylor Resident Assistant