Opening your report card knowing not-so-fantastic grades will be staring you in the face is a frightening concept, particularly if your parents expected you to improve your grades and get a better report card

If you are continually seeing poor grade results despite being a reasonably intelligent person that does a fair amount of studying, it’s time to give your study habits a drastic makeover.

Improve your grades and get a better report card

Effective study habits do not involve cramming all night before a big exam or a notebook only half full of notes when every page should be loaded with information.

Improve your grades and get a better report card by making sure you are taking care of yourself physically as well as doing simple things like always attending class and studying a little every day. 

Here are 8 tips to help you improve your grades and get a better report card:

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by going to class. Every Class.

Unless you are deathly ill or are dealing with some kind of family emergency, GO TO CLASS. This may seem like an obvious tip, but there are plenty of students who think they can sail through a semester while making a few class appearances. Besides the fact that poor class attendance generally affects your grades even if you ace the midterm and final, borrowing friends’ notes or talking to the professor about what you missed will never make up for actually attending class. Many professors often use what they discuss in class on exams, even if the material isn’t in the text. Regular attendance is therefore essential to avoid that deer-in-headlights look come test time. 

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by taking notes while in class.

Not only should you be hanging on every word the professor says, you should be furiously taking notes until the bell rings. It doesn’t matter if only you can decipher your notes so long as you understand them. Besides, writing out information by hand is a great way to absorb the material. 

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by concentrating.

When studying, make sure you are 100% focused on the material at all times rather than spacing out about the dog you met in the park or the pair of shoes you want to purchase. Review information as much as needed until it’s drilled into your brain 

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by getting enough sleep.

Bad sleep habits will definitely contribute towards a lower GPA. If you are constantly getting poor sleep or not enough sleep your body will not be able to recharge as needed, leaving you sluggish and making it much harder to concentrate and focus on your work. Try to get seven to eight hours of sleep each night to awake refreshed, full of energy, and ready to take on that physics final. 

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by eating right.

Like poor sleep habits, a bad diet will also interfere with your grades. Diets full of takeout, sugar, and bad fats work as energy succubi leaving you lethargic and therefore not excited to study. Refined sugar can also cause anxiety, hyperactivity and difficulty concentrating, none of which are going to contribute towards good grades. Bad food also puts you at risk for all kinds of health problems, such as heart disease and diabetes. Stick to foods that will give you energy and help you focus, such as leafy greens, whole grains, fruits, and other vegetables including cauliflower, beets, and asparagus. 

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by doing a little bit every day.

Rather than staying up all night to study for an exam or write a paper, do a little bit every day. Pulling an all-nighter is tiring and stressful, and generally does not work. At all. Review the notes you took that day, look over past tests and papers in preparation for the final, and go over what you highlighted in your text. Keeping the material fresh in your mind on a daily basis will result in less panic come exam time, and prepares you for pop quizzes or surprise essays. 

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by getting help if you need it.

Utilize teachers’ office hours or sign up for tutoring sessions. Office hours are for when a student has a question about an assignment or project, or wants further explanation about a concept described in class. Tutoring sessions are also perfect for getting help on a project or subject you are having trouble with, and both are ways to reinforce new material.

  • Improve your grades and get a better report card by scheduling your time effectively.

If you have a spare 10 minutes while waiting for your next class or 15 minutes of free time while taking public transportation, use this time to get some reading done or go over your notes. All that time adds up quickly! Good students will always tell you that budgeting time effectively is very helpful in terms of getting good grades, and it’s amazing how much you can accomplish in those “in between” minutes. 

Put these tips into practice and you will improve your grades and get a better report card!

by Kent Page McGroarty

Kent Page McGroartyKent Page McGroarty is a blogger for TutorDelphia.

Visit TutorDelphia.com for expert tutoring in Philadelphia and more information on how to improve your grades and get a better report card.