5 study tips that will raise your GPA

By Leann Indolos
12/03/2015
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At the beginning of every school year, we set goals of getting good grades and maintaining a high GPA. But such goals are sometimes dismantled by busy schedules and stress. Before we know it, our grades have dipped and finals are just around the corner. Here are some study tips to help you ace your tests and raise your GPA.

1. Use professors as a resource

Never hesitate to ask for help. No one will look down on you for asking questions and getting extra assistance. Your teachers and professors are there to guide you, and they understand that you're a busy student with a lot on your plate. Believe it or not, they don’t expect you to grasp everything at once. They realize that sometimes we forget what we’ve been taught and need to brush up on certain lessons. Asking your professors for help gives them the opportunity to explain concepts in a way that uniquely caters to you  and may even provide you with more study tips. This is one of the most valuable ways to study for your exams and raise your GPA.

2. Don’t wait until the last minute to study

It’s hard enough to remember all the information your professors have covered over three or four months, but it’s even more challenging to recall all that information in one night. Don’t wait until the night before, start studying at least four or five days before your test. Waiting until the last minute to study doesn’t allow enough time to ask questions and get extra help from professors and peers. Pulling all-nighters only creates unnecessary stress and low test scores.

Our brains retain more information when we allow time for that information to sink in ... if you study for an hour, allow yourself to rest for 15 minutes, or if you read 10 pages of your textbook, you can relax for 10 minutes before picking it up again.

3. Procrastinating properly can raise your GPA

This one might surprise you, but studies show that our brains retain more information when we allow time for that information to sink in before adding new information. So take a break every once in a while! Give your brain some time to relax. For example, if you study for an hour, allow yourself to rest for 15 minutes, or if you read 10 pages of your textbook, you can relax for 10 minutes before picking it up again. But beware of the dangers of gadgets and social media. You may choose to spend your short breaks on your computer or cell phone, but it’s all too easy to get sucked into social media, making it harder to put it down and begin studying again. Instead, try grabbing something to eat, exercising, going outside, getting a change of scenery, or even taking a quick nap. You’ve earned it!

In a study group you can ask for help, quiz each other, or find new creative ways to study for your exams and increase your GPA.

4. Find a study group and share your study tips

Two heads are better than one, and one of the most valuable lessons you can learn in life is that you are never alone  even in your studies! It’s easy to feel like you’re the only one who doesn’t get it, but the truth is if you look around, you’ll find there are other students in the same boat. While you all may be struggling, a little teamwork can be the solution. Sharing your study tips with others and explaining concepts to those who are having a difficult time will ultimately help you understand the concept better. In a study group you can ask for help, quiz each other, or find new and creative ways to study for your exams and increase your GPA.

Mistakes help you discover areas in which you need help and make you better, as a student and as a person.

5. Learn from your mistakes

Use past assignments and tests to pinpoint challenging problems or questions that you missed. Use your mistakes as study tools. Identify what went wrong, find the correct answer, and analyze how you arrived at that answer. If you’re having difficulties, talk to your professor, ask a friend or another student, or find a tutor and ask them to explain what you should’ve done and what to do next time. Though it may be disheartening to look back at your mistakes, don’t get discouraged! Mistakes help you discover areas in which you need help and make you better, as a student and as a person.

Try out these study tips, and you're sure to increase your chances of acing your exams and raising your GPA.

Did you know that better grades can score more scholarships? Use our Scholarship Match to find scholarships and reward all your hard work.

About the author

Leann IndolosLeann is currently a high school senior from Fort Worth, TX, who plans to pursue a nursing degree in college with a possible minor in vocal performance. While Leann invests much of her time in academics, she also has a passion for music and theatre. Although English has never been her favorite subject, Leann loves to express her thoughts and ideas through her writing.

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