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Getting Good Grades?

ProphasiProphasi 277 replies35 threads Member
For any class of '08 and above UCD students, how hard is it to get good grades during freshman year?

A lot of fresh out of HS students, regardless of what college they attend, say college is soooo hard. Even average college GPA's are scary. People who used to get 4.0's are gettin 3.0's. But I want an honest answer, is the reason for college being "hard" to people the fact that they party, do IM sports, socialize, don't go to lecture, don't study, etc. I mean, if I hit the books and read, did the h/w, studied until I understood the chapter, went to lecture, went to office hours (all at the expense of a social life), would I be able to get a 3.7+. It just seems to me that so many people confuse self-discipline with difficulty.

When I asked my HS english teacher, who went to UCLA graduate school in the 90's, if college was as difficult as everyone made it out to be, she said, "No, as long as you manage your time properly." I mean, if she could get to UCLA grad school with that mentality, then I think it'd be true.
edited August 2005
7 replies
Post edited by Prophasi on
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Replies to: Getting Good Grades?

  • Mr.BMr.B 1826 replies88 threads Senior Member
    I am not a UCD student...I went to Cornell and somewhere in the middle of the first semester I took my first test. I studied harder than I had ever studied before, took the test, and having anticipated most questions, left the testing area very happy. About a week later when the tests were handed back I was expecting an A and got a C. I checked my answers against what was in the text book and went to complain, I had answered every question like the book. They were ready for me...they showed me a copy of an A test. The answers involved facts from the books, lectures and they were put together with a great deal of original and critical thought. They were clearly better than mine....I learned a new standard and pushed myself harder.

    After school during my first job, I noticed that my dedication to and endurance level for work was relatively high...you want your college education to bring you to a new level. By the time I had graduated, freshman year would have been much easier for me because I had learned to compartmentalize and organize my educational chores. If you take 16 hours of class and do approximately three times that in out of class work... you are describing a 64 hour work week, which is more than some office workers but less than many successful people. If you consider a 6 day work week: 10.6 hours a day for school, 8 for sleep, plenty of time to have fun left over plus one whole day off a week. Learn to form study groups so you can have a social life while you work toward your academic goal. Anticipate project/paper/test deadlines.

    You could make a list of things that will bring you toward your goal and things that will steer you away from your goal....pay attention to the list....if you find yourself cutting classes, borrowing other peoples notes or highlighted text books....it is kind of like being an athelete and watching other people practice and then when the real game starts you won't be prepared. It's not just the grades, or the knowledge it is the skill for acquiring knowledge and using it that is best developed as an undergraduate...good luck. You can do it...you were accepted that means your as good as everyone else.
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  • megathundermegathunder 924 replies90 threads Senior Member
    Whoa, hey, wow.


    Bravo Mr. B, bravo. Great lesson from a personal experience. I'll try my best to use it..
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  • bjwbellbjwbell 171 replies5 threads Junior Member
    If you study for a 4 hours a day I'm pretty sure you'll get good grades 3.5+, I do know of some people that just plain flunked out of a major. An acquaintance of mine was a community college transfer student in physics and failed a class and got a couple C's, then when he switched to Econ he got high A's so it's not just about studying you have to also have the apptitude for a subject.
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  • TTTRTTTR 190 replies23 threads Junior Member
    That's probably going to be the toughest thing for me--learning to manage my time and not procrastinate. And there is no one there prodding me to keep me on task... oh the joys of independence.
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  • PearlinthemistPearlinthemist 695 replies2 threads Member
    I'll be honest & say that if you go to lecture & stay on top of things (i.e. don't put off learning the material until the day before the midterm) you should get good grades. If you just aren't understanding the material, you can go to office hours or the ta's office hours or ask other people in your class that know what they are doing.

    Many people in my dorm freshman year decided college was for socializing not for an education. They never went to lecture.. had slip n' slides in the hallway (seriously)... became nocturnal.. I don't think they studied at all. They got put on academic probation after fall quarter. You can still have friends and go out after class.. as long as you don't ignore your school work completely.

    I'm a 4th year chemistry major. I go to lecture unless I'm horribly sick, or have an important appointment somewhere else. I've only taken advantage of office hours maybe three times. In high school I had a 3.99, and now I have a 3.82. But the difference is also how they calculate GPA.. B+=3.3, A- = 3.7, A&A+=4.0.
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  • ProphasiProphasi 277 replies35 threads Member
    Thank you Mr. B and Pearlinthemist for confirming my assumptions. Thank you TTTR for also pointing out another factor that often sidetracks college students, the independence.
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  • Mr.BMr.B 1826 replies88 threads Senior Member
    Now is not the time to get a new video game or to learn how to play cards. You mind find keeping track of your time in a journal helpful. If you find yourself goofing off too much you will be able to refocus, Good Luck.
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