As a nursing student, you likely have a lot on your plate with clinical assignments, labs, projects, and the constant stream of new information. It’s no wonder that many students struggle in college — especially given the time demands of balancing schoolwork and other personal responsibilities. Fortunately, there are strategies and techniques to help improve your grades in college as a nursing student. Whether you are struggling in one particular class or want to improve your performance across the board, these tips can help you get back on track and even exceed expectation
Create a study plan
As a nursing student, you’re already busy enough — so why not start with the very first step in increasing your grades? Creating a study plan gives you a road map for the semester, and can make a big difference in terms of how well you do in your classes. Some of the things you might want to consider while creating your study plan include: Which courses you need to take to meet your program requirements The learning outcomes for each course and the specific topics you’ll cover What resources you have available (e.g., textbooks, online content, etc.) Your personal preferences and how you learn best Your current schedule (including your work and clinical hours) Your current GPA and what you need to do to raise it
Take care of your physical and mental health
While this may sound counterintuitive initially, studies show that students with good health do better academically. One reason for this is that being in good health enables you to focus on your studies and have more energy for your other responsibilities, such as clinical and extracurricular activities. You should also factor in the time you need to rest, eat, and exercise. Physical health: You should, of course, maintain good eating habits. But beyond that, you also need to take care of your other bodily needs, such as getting enough sleep, managing stress, and taking time for your hobbies. Mental health: Good mental health also plays a significant role in how well you do in school. So how do you take care of your mental health as a nursing student? You can do many things to manage your stress, improve your mood, and manage your time, such as carving out time for self-care and connecting with classmates.
Turn in all of your work on time
At the very least, you should strive to turn in all of your assignments on time. Doing so shows your professors that you value their feedback and promptness — and that you take pride in your work. You may have to make some sacrifices to turn in all of your assignments on time. For instance, you might have to reduce the number of hours you spend at work, or prioritize your schoolwork over extracurricular activities
Make use of your resources
Whether you are struggling in one or multiple courses, or want to make sure you are on the right track, there are several resources available to you. Make sure to take advantage of your professors and TA (teaching assistants) and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Your professors are there to help you learn, and TAs are there to assist you with understanding the material. They are there to help you succeed and in many cases, they have experience and insight that can help you improve your academic performance. You should also connect with your classmates and participate in study groups. Not only can working with peers help you understand the material, but it can also help motivate you to stay on track with your schoolwork
Find the most effective learning methods for you
An important factor in improving your grades is finding the best learning methods for you. There are many different learning methods and strategies to consider, such as: Taking advantage of your classes — asking your professor questions, and attending office hours to get clarification on topics that you need help with. Take notes and use mnemonic devices to remember key terms and concepts so you can recall them later without needing to review your notes. Use flashcards and other self-quizzes to test your knowledge regularly. Connecting with classmates and forming study groups. Take full advantage of the resources available to you — such as the school library, online databases, tutoring services, and your professors and TA’s
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
It can be easy to feel like you need to push through your schoolwork and other responsibilities on your own — but you shouldn’t be ashamed to ask for help when you need it. If you are struggling in one or multiple courses, you should utilize all available resources. You should also ask for help when you need it, such as when you’re short on time and have several assignments due within a short period. You may be able to get an extension on a due date or request that a professor provides feedback on an assignment earlier than anticipated. You should also consider getting academic assistance outside of the classroom — such as hiring a tutor to help you understand key concepts, taking an online course, or enrolling in a tutoring center.
As a nursing student, you likely have a lot on your plate with clinical assignments, labs, projects, and the constant stream of new information. It’s no wonder that many students struggle in college — especially given the time demands of balancing schoolwork and other personal responsibilities. If you are struggling in one particular class or want to improve your performance across the board, these tips can help you get back on track and even exceed expectations. However, it is important to remember that doing well in college does not just happen. It requires a lot of time, effort, and dedication. To do well in college, you must be committed to your studies, manage your time well, and find ways to manage stress.