You aren’t in elementary school anymore–you can’t get extra credit for bringing in a box of tissues. You aren’t in middle school anymore–you can’t retake a test you failed. You aren’t in high school anymore–you can’t get an easy 4.0 just because you tried. Welcome to college lovelies!
A lot of you have probably just taken your first exams and some of you may not be so thrilled with the results. Even though it’s my second year in college I was still like “wtf?!” when I got one of my scores back. I attended the lectures, read the textbook, studied, went to review sessions and came out of the exam thinking I did really well. But that was not the case…
I need a high GPA to get into a program next year so any little slip-up could potentially hurt me. So I spent almost an entire day complaining to everyone that would listen to me, comparing my score to classmate’s, and whining to my parents. Then I realized that was getting me absolutely NO WHERE! Like I said, you can’t get extra credit for bringing in a box of tissues, you can’t retake a test you failed, and you can’t get an easy 4.0 just because you tried.
Here’s the right way to handle a not-so-great exam score:
1. Get a copy of the exam and see what questions you got wrong.
2. If you don’t understand any of the correct answers, get help.
3. Go to office hours and ask your professor or GSI what you can do differently next time.
4. Attend every lecture and actually pay attention the whole time (that means no facebook stalking or falling asleep).
5. Anytime you don’t understand a new topic, get help right away.
6. Read the assigned readings and take notes in class.
7. Do the practice problems even if they aren’t collected.
8. Don’t cram the night before an exam.
9. Just relax! What’s done is done. Hopefully you will do better next time, and if not, life goes on!
Any other tips, Lovelies? How did your first college exams go?