Saturday, April 30, 2011

Repeating a Class

It is an assumption, but I believe most students really don't like to retake a class.  Taking a class and failing can have a very negative impact on a student's self-esteem and attitude toward school.  I will also step out on a limb and say that nearly all students who fail a class do so because of bad habits, such as disorganization, apathy toward school or the class specifically, and simply not turning in work.  Whatever the reason a class was failed and is on your schedule again, you have to make some changes if the same outcome is not to be repeated.  Learn from the mistakes you made the first time.
  1. Commit to a new start.  There is no use blaming yourself or anyone else for failing a class.  Use this experience to learn some better habits and improve yourself.
  2. Be better organized.  Use a specific folder and a planner to keep track of the assignments for this class.  When you complete and hand in an assignment, put a check mark or some symbol next to it so you can see your progress and know you handed in the required work.
  3. Chances are you still have some materials from the class.  Use old tests and quizzes as review material.  Be sure to do the required reading again, but you will no doubt find you can move through the material faster as it will be familiar to you.  While you may not remember all the detail of the important concepts from the first time, you will remember reading about them.  Use your prior knowledge to help you through the material.
  4. Talk to your teacher frequently.  You need to let him/her know you are concerned about your progress.  Whether the teacher is the same or not, you are repeating the class and the teacher will, most likely, know.  A positive attitude and genuine concern for your academic progress will make quite a difference in your experience.
  5.  Try to use other sources to help bring the materials to a level of understanding for you, if you are struggling with concepts.  I recently had to help tutor a biology student in genetics, and I was having trouble understanding the concepts by reading the textbook.  I googled "genetics for dummies" and "simple genetics" and was greeted by a large amount of material.  I was much better prepared to help tutor the student after I spent some time doing a little research.
Failing a class is not the worst thing that will ever happen to you.  Getting stuck in the negativity and allowing the experience to leave a permanent scar is not acceptable.  Learn and grow from your experience.  Know this, however...if you don't change some habits that you know caused problems for you the first time, failing again is probable. 

No comments:

Post a Comment