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Secret Ways to Improve GPA in College

by Jan Archer

While some strategies help you improve your GPA, no secret fixes can elevate it overnight. Anything you do to improve your GPA is going to take work. A GPA is supposed to be a representation of how hard you worked. If you could buy a number or quickly raise it, it wouldn't mean anything. A few simple strategies and ideas can help you keep your GPA in top shape and compensate for low grades.

Use your university's writing lab or writing center. Almost every school has one, and you should set appointments for tutoring help with any writing-related assignment. Tutors are equipped to help you with reading comprehension and with formulating ideas, drafting and revising your work. You'll be surprised at what an hour of tutoring help can do for your grade on a research paper, project or a lab report.

Visit your professors during office hours. The professors are direct sources to finding out what you need to do to improve in their classes, and visiting them shows that you care about your coursework, your learning and your grades. Build relationships with your professors and ask them questions about things you don't understand. You'll find their classes more enjoyable, and you'll be inspired to work harder for your grades when the professors know you by name. Also, when it's time to turn in final grades, the professors will be more likely to give you the benefit of the doubt if they know you're a hard-working student who has put the time into their classes.

Retake classes in which you earned poor grades. According to North Dakota State University, retaking classes for higher grades is the quickest way to lift your GPA because your new grade replaces the old one. Take the time to decide why you did poorly the first time around, and hire a tutor if you need someone to assist you with the material. It may cost money to retake a class, but if you've earned lower than a C, retaking the course can save your GPA from ruin.

Take classes you about which you are passionate. When you're fired up about a topic, you remember the details and absorb the knowledge. Some students think taking so-called "easy" classes will boost their GPA, but if you're not fascinated by the subject matter, you probably won't ace the tests or write quality papers. Instead, study what makes you tick and focus on the way the material applies to other things you know. You'll be surprised at how easily you can earn an A in a subject that sparks your interest.

Tip

  • Don't take a class if you're not ready to handle the material. If freshmen classes are 100- and 200-level classes, don't try to take a 400-level class just to impress your professor. You could end up putting a dent in your grade point average and costing yourself a chunk of change if you have to retake the class. Also, keep your schedule filled with a manageable number of courses. Take a full load if you can handle it, but don't overload classes to finish more quickly unless you know you'll be able to handle the workload and keep your grades high.

About the Author

Jan Archer holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science and a master's degree in creative writing. Roth has written trade books for Books-a-Million and has published articles on green living, wellness and education topics. She taught business writing, literature, creative writing and English composition at the college level for five years.

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