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Overcoming Academic Challenges: Strategies for Improved Performance

May 13, 2023 | 0 comments

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May 13, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments

I fully understand that class attendance is essential to academic success. The past semester, I missed two classes, Business Calculus (MTH 129) and English 200, resulting in poor performance. The reason for missing the classes was the past spring semester; I was severely ill and could not attend or focus on my tests. Furthermore, I was also dealing with many family and personal issues. The doctors put me on medication because I was clinically depressed. My sickness also caused me to be weak, have seizures, and lose 30 lbs. I never thought my sickness would interrupt my studies completely. Last semester, I managed several days in the hospital and between classes. A month into my homestay, I was not fully recovered yet but began to strive to catch up with my lessons. I was not severely affected by depression but had to deal with depressive symptoms at home. I had the time to read at home, attend doctor’s appointments, and work out. When I registered for the units at the beginning of the semester, I had high ambitions of passing my exams at the end of the semester. I later understood that it is possible to leave in the middle of a semester when having illnesses associated with depression compounded with personal family issues.


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My out-of-class study approach is well-planned, and I always follow it to the letter. First, I have a timetable where I go to the library for 2 hours in the evening to read or do some assignments. Moreover, I take notes during class lectures and rewrite them in the school library or at home. During My home study, I also use abbreviations to summarize major points from what I have read. I also have study group meeting meetings in the day in between lessons, for example, every Tuesday and Thursday, where we discuss and ask each other questions.

To get answers to my questions in every registered unit last semester, I participated in class and group discussions where I asked questions and made my contributions. Similarly, I could consult my unit teachers after class, research at the school library, or use internet sources.

Upon my last semester’s reflection and evaluation, the outside classroom factors hindered my work and full academic engagement, including mental health issues. As stated earlier, I was diagnosed with depression due to personal and family problems, which made me lose focus on my studies. My father lost his job, and he had no way of paying his loans, my school fees, my other siblings, our upkeep, and my grandparents. It was a big family problem that also led to my depression and also my siblings. I could not imagine dropping out of school because of the lack of school fees at the university level.

I felt I was not generally prepared for most of the exams, given that I missed some of my lessons and could not understand some concepts. Moreover, given that I had read some of the books, attended group discussions, and consulted my teachers, some areas were still unclear to me because of the vast areas in every unit, especially Business Calculus (MTH 129) and English 200.

I have reviewed my next semester’s course schedule and verified the number of hours for which I am registered, and they do not exceed the academic probation limit of 15.

To improve my GPA, I believe there is a benefit to retaking the courses in which I performed poorly. I will seriously consider Business Calculus (MTH 129) units and English 200 to improve my grades and GPA.

If the proposed units are offered next semester, I will be glad if Dean Wilbers recommends that I join the classes as soon as possible instead of postponing them. I will also be glad to continue with other units if there are no clashes in my class timetables and if it does not exceed the academic probation limit of 15 hours.

Have personal study time- I will draw a weekly study calendar and determine how much time I will have and when I will have it. I will fill in my class time, study time which will be mandatory, meals time, and allowance time for my walking and for games/exercise, sleep, fun, and personal time. This way, I can measure the hours I spend studying and attending my classes.

Have consultation time with teachers and attend group discussions- I will join my class discussions to brainstorm on some of the class or unit issues I have a problem understanding. Moreover, if I miss a concept, I will follow up with the teachers for a consultation or further explanation until I fully understand it. This section will be measurable with the number of times I consulted my teachers and the time I attended group discussions.

Participate in class throughout the next semester- at the beginning of the term, I will read the syllabus the teachers gave. I will also regularly attend classes to ensure I hear the crucial lectures, take notes and understand the readings and given assignments. Moreover, in class, I will take notes by paying attention and ensure I do and submit my assignments.

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