Academic Resolutions for the New Year
Congratulations! You’ve made it to 2015. Whether you’ve already got a list of goals you’d like to accomplish this year or are still thinking about what to do tomorrow, don’t leave your academic career out of the picture. When it comes to things like study skills, research abilities, or time management, you can never stop improving—and it’s certainly never too late to start. Consider some of these academic resolutions when you’re setting goals for the New Year.
Stay on top of things. Don’t let upcoming projects get the best of you this year. Make it your mission to stay organized so you know exactly what’s due when, what’s expected of you, and what’s coming up next. This includes keeping track of assignments and test dates (invest in a day planner—or a handy smartphone app), and doing a little bit each day so the workload doesn’t get too overwhelming. You’ll thank yourself when the deadline rolls around.
Get involved. There’s more to school than tests and papers: committing to a club or team is a fun way to meet new people, develop your skills, and make yourself known among your teachers. If you have something to look forward to (aside from your next homework assignment), it’s a positive source of motivation and your academic focus will improve, too. You’ll be surprised at what a positive effect getting involved outside the classroom can have on your grades.
Challenge yourself. Go beyond what’s expected of you. If something in a class sparks your interest, do some more reading or ask your teachers for extra information (or extra credit). Don’t be afraid to set higher goals for yourself: for instance, if you were hoping and praying for a B paper last year (and you got it!), why not try for an A this time around? It may seem difficult to change your mindset at first, but by motivating yourself, you’re more likely to improve—and your instructors will recognize the extra effort you’re putting in.
Learn from last year. Is there a class you were hoping to do better in or an assignment you kind of dropped the ball on? Based on your past academic experiences, think of ways to improve yourself this year. Whether it’s revising your study strategy or just working harder, confronting your past slip-ups is crucial to ensure they don’t happen again. Not to mention that teachers and professors love to see their students taking constructive criticism: prove you’ve learned something from the class, and there’s nowhere to go but up.
Happy New Year and good luck in your academic endeavours!