If I Knew Then What I Know Now… MORE MIDTERM ADVICE

As a new feature in the Talk of Townsend blog, throughout the semester we will provide words of wisdom to freshmen and underclassmen. Please check back for advice on midterms, finals, getting involved, and more!

This month’s feature focuses on midterm grades. What do you do if you are not performing as well as you expected? How can you improve your study habits? Upperclassmen share some advice…

“When I first saw my midterm grades, I was satisfied to be completely honest. I had almost all B-‘s! Not bad I thought at the time! I still had half of a semester to bring those minuses up. Honestly, I wish I had set a higher standard for myself at the time. I continued studying the way I had been from the beginning of the year, and even did a few extra credit assignments to bring those grades up. I ended up with 2 B-‘s and 2 B+’s! My GPA however, ended up being a 2.974 which was below the 3.0 required to maintain my scholarship. My advice to anyone who is satisfied with their grades, do more than is required. If a professor offers an opportunity to up that grade by even one point, do the extra work. You do not want to end up .026 away from a scholarship! I have worked so hard over the past four years to bring my GPA up to a 3.5, yet i am still .05 away! Trust me, I am a senior now and I wish I had learned sooner!”

  • I would go to office hours after a test I didn’t do so well on. Many professors give points back, and if even they don’t, I find it’s a really good way to understand the things I didn’t understand when I took the test.
  • I would get at least 2 hours of homework done on a Saturday. Even if you don’t think you have a lot of work, just getting one assignment out of the way will really cut down on your stress level for the coming week.
  • Especially for the more difficult classes, always studying with at least one other person is important. It helps you stay on task, and it’s more likely you’ll figure something out that you don’t understand if you have someone else to bounce ideas off of.
  • For classes where the professor wants you to print out powerpoint slides, it can be annoying to do this before every class, especially now that you have to pay to print at the library. However, I found a big difference in my ability to absorb information in class after I started printing the slides out instead of trying to write everything that was up on the projector. When you have all the info on the slides in front of you already, it’s easier to just make little notes next to them if the professor says anything extra.

-Sarah Cordova


Christy is a graduate of the Biden School of Public Policy and Administration at the University of Delaware with a master's in Public Administration. She is the chief operating officer of a local non-profit, 3B Brae’s Brown Bags and a Communications Specialist for the University of Delaware. Her research interests include issues of social justice, such as nutritional insecurity, community re-entry, and domestic violence. She also volunteers with her local school district and has a deep passion for education policy, as she believes many social injustices stem from inequitable opportunities in education.

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