How to Get Better Grades for College Students


These tips on how to get better grades will help college students improve their study skills. They range from letting yourself write a bad essay to breaking assignments into easy chunks.

How to Get Better Grades for College Students

How to Get Better Grades for College Students

The more prepared you are for your exams and essays and projects, my friends, the luckier you’ll be — and the higher your grades will be, too! If you want to get serious about earning A’s, read Becoming A Master Student.





The higher the grades, the happier the college student, right? But remember that “Chance favors only the prepared mind.” ~ Louis Pasteur.

If you have to work while you’re trying to get better grades, read 10 Highest Paying Jobs for College Students. If you can get a job that pays well, you can work less hours. And if you can work less hours, then you’ll have more time for studying! It’s a win-win equation for college students who want to get good grades.

And, here are five tips to help college students achieve their college and academic goals…

5 Tips for Getting Better Grades for College Students

If you struggle to write, read 10 Writing Tips for Science and Math Majors.

Put a time limit on the hardest tasks

If you don’t like a certain subject in school or can’t force yourself to work through math formulas, promise yourself you’ll only study for 30 minutes or an hour. Set aside just that amount of time, and reward yourself afterwards with something you love (with either a school subject you enjoy, or a healthy activity — not chocolate bon bons in front of the TV!). If you struggle with procrastination, read 5 Ways to End Procrastination for College Students.

Write a poor essay or draw a confusing chemistry diagram

Go ahead: create a boring power point presentation, draw a mispresentative representational chart, or write a stupid poem. If you want to get better grades in college, you have to let go of your perfectionist tendencies. Lower your standards at the beginning of your study session, when you’re struggling to get the job done. Then once you get the dreck out of your system and the basics down, you can fine-tune your diagram or chart and edit your essay.

Savor your past academic accomplishments

Remember those academic goals you achieved — that exam you aced, the speech you got an “A” on, or project that everyone loved?

How to Get Better Grades for College Students

How to Get Better Grades for College Students



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To improve your study skills, stop and savor those victorious feelings! Picture yourself feeling those same feelings same when you’re done studying for this exam or writing this essay. Simply enjoying your amazing academic accomplishments can motivate you to study harder and longer in your current college courses.

Work with your natural rhythms

To get better grades in college, do the “hardest” work when you’re least tired. This can mean studying before lunch if you’re a morning person, or studying mid-afternoon if you’re a night owl. Studying or doing homework when you’re tired is much more difficult than when you’re fresh – especially if it’s for a class or subject you dread.

Break the big assignments down

If you have to write a 10 page essay, break it down into small sections. If you have a huge final exam to study for, break the material down into several mini-tests. Separating huge tasks into several smaller ones is a great way to improve your study skills -– and it’ll boost your confidence, too!

If you’re a freshman, you might find Tips for Surviving College for New Students helpful.

Do you have questions or thoughts on how to get better grades for college students? Please comment below…


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7 thoughts on “How to Get Better Grades for College Students

  • April

    I disagree with what Laurie said about not worrying about how you’ll pay off your student loans when you’re in school. I think in this day and age, before you even start college you need to think about it. No don’t freak out, but face your fears by doing some research about how much different schools will cost you in the end, and how much your payments will be upon graduation. Make sure that the line of work you are going into pays on average at least as much as you will owe in student loans and then you will be okay! But always go with your gut, if you don’t feel like you will be in an industry that you can get a high enough paying job and the debt scares you too much, then maybe go part time so you can pay some as you go. Student loan debt is the most dangerous debt if you aren’t aware of what you’re doing, because it is secured (they can come after your house if you don’t pay), and it is not dischargeable in bankruptcy. Knowledge is power!

  • Laurie Post author

    I don’t think you should worry about how you’ll pay off your student loan debt when you’re in school. I think the main focus for college students should be studying and school. Later, when you graduate, you’ll have plenty of time to think about how you’ll pay off your student loan debt!

  • Michael M.

    How do you get better grades when you’re stressing about money? I have academic goals but can’t get close to them because I’m scared about the amount of college loan debt I have. I had to get $20,000 in loans to cover my education costs. I’m going into my fourth year of college, and am scared about not getting a job after I graduate. What if I can’t pay off all my debt?

    I don’t want my last year of college to be ruined by stress, fear, and anxiety. Got any tips for a stressed college student?

  • Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen Post author

    Thanks for your tip about procrastination. Yes, breaking down your assignment is a great way for college students to get better grades.

  • cornerstone university lansing

    Ending procastination once and for all can add a great effect for students to get better grades. Focusing on what should be the first thing to do and breaking down your assignment can make it easier to accomplish.

  • Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen Post author

    Me too, Hank! I get up at 5 am every day…and I get more accomplished by 8 am than most people get done all morning….but this only works if you’re a morning person.
    .-= Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen´s last blog post …How to be Lucky – 10 Ways to Get Luckier in Life and Love =-.

  • Hank

    Mastering your time is crucial. I find that waking up earlier in the day helps set a routine where you’ll get things accomplished. Wake up late and you won’t get much done.Thanks for the tips.