For just three little letters, your GPA has a huge amount of power over your future education or career path. Don’t you owe it to the future you to make sure it’s as high as possible?
The good news is, a few changes to your habits can make a significant difference in your grade point average. Here are five simple things you can do to help improve your GPA and finish the academic year with zero regrets!
- Pace Yourself
It might feel like you have plenty of time before your next exam or essay deadline, but procrastination can quickly kill your academic progress. Spreading your study out more evenly across the semester will give the information time to embed itself in your brain, ready to be retrieved with a last-minute study session.
Choose to spend weeks without working hard outside class and you’re setting yourself up for a very stressful period of ineffective cramming and rushed paper-writing—neither of which will give you the greatest results.
- Set a Schedule
Setting a schedule is key to perfecting the pace of your study. Wait for inspiration to strike, and the weeks will fly by until you’re suddenly faced with an exam, a paper, and a reading list, all at the same time.
Ensure that your schedule works for you by noting the times of day that you’re most productive at completing different types of academic tasks. You can also try coordinating your study schedule with your class schedule to maintain focus on a specific subject area on a particular day of the week.
- Learn to Love the Library
With pretty much all information now easily accessible online, it can be tempting to skip those traditional library research or study sessions in favor of opening the laptop at your favorite coffee shop (or in front of Netflix).
However, making yourself a fixture at your college library has numerous benefits. It’s designed to be conducive to study, with minimal distractions and carefully ordered materials. Helpful librarians can personally assist you in a way that no search engine can compete with, whether it’s with finding the right sources or creating an annotated bibliography. The bookshelves and archives can be a great place to find inspiration, and surrounding yourself with other committed students is a fantastic motivator. You’re also likely to find that simply stepping into a space that’s dedicated to study puts you in a productive frame of mind that you just don’t get anywhere else.
- Ditch the Digital Distractions
Where you study can eliminate some physical distractions such as chatty roommates or the latest episode of your favorite show, but digital distractions can be harder to avoid. Your smartphone offers instant access to music, movies, and social media, and will make you easily contactable via numerous different apps. This time-sucker can cause pretty much constant temptation, as most of us carry them with us wherever we go.
The simplest solution is to either leave your phone elsewhere or switch it off completely. If you feel unable to do that then there are apps that you can install on your smartphone that will block your access to selected apps or functions, or even lock your phone completely, for a time period that you determine.
- Strike a Balance
It’s great to be focused on your studies. However, leading a balanced life is important to your mood, health, and general well-being. Sleep, exercise, and good food should also be a priority, as well as making time for socializing, seeing loved ones, spending time on hobbies, and doing other things you enjoy. Sometimes a day of doing nothing at all is exactly what you needed to recharge, sending you into a new day refreshed and ready to study effectively.
Getting into good study habits from the start should help you to fulfill your GPA potential with a minimum of stress. Don’t forget about the little details that can lose you points on your papers. Properly formatting your work (in APA style, MLA style or Chicago style format, for example), double-checking spelling and grammar, and ensuring that you correctly cite all your sources on your works cited page are three simple things that EasyBib can help with, freeing you up to focus on getting those grades where you want them to be!