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What I Wish I Would Have Done in College

Lifestyle & Opinion

by Steve Nash

As a college student, you will experience some of your greatest successes and failures at your chosen institution. It is a place where you will grow and learn in order to build a career. It’s also a place where you’ll make mistakes and learn from there. Fortunately, you can also learn from the mistakes of others. Here are a few things I would have done differently now that I look back on it:


One of the most important study tips that I can give you from an experienced standpoint is to get enough sleep. Yes, there will be times were all-nighters are necessary, but getting 6-8 hours of sleep will help your GPA. Ultimately, to get the right amount of sleep, you’re going to have to be able to manage your time. You will have to be able to balance your homework and your social calendar, which can be done by setting boundaries.

Study in Groups

Working in groups is a great way to learn from your peers and get ahead on a challenging assignment that you may be struggling with. Studying in groups will help decrease your workload as well. Working in groups will help you better understand material, and give you a new perspective and understanding on challenging assignments. Who knows? You might even make a few friends in the process! I unfortunately didn’t do this until my final year, and discovered that it vastly improved my test taking skills.

Go to Class

Well, this tip may seem obvious, but you wouldn’t believe the excuses college students make to not go to class. Large lecture classes that don’t take attendance make going to class that much harder. However, you should realize that the best way to prepare for tests is to attend class and participate. Attending class will give you a different perspective on the material that you are learning. Don’t expect to do well by just reading the textbook. Plus, you’re paying for it. Think about how much each course costs, and divide that by the number of classes there are. If your class only meets once a week and you miss one, that’s quite a bit of money you’ve wasted.

Don’t Waste Your Time

As an incoming freshman, you really don’t realize how fast the time goes. You will realize college is a great learning experience, in more ways than in just the classroom and lecture halls. It can be tempting to spend the entire weekend binge-watching the latest show (it was LOST for me), but now I realize I could have been far more productive and had a better social life if I would have managed my time better.

Just don’t get too carried away with your social life. It’s no secret that college students spend a lot of time drinking. Check out this infographic titled “How Much Do College Students Drink?” for some staggering statistics. The worst stat is at the bottom, saying “25% of students report academic consequences of their drinking, including missing classes, falling behind, doing poorly on exams or papers, and receiving lower grades overall.” Be smart about your after-class activities so your grades don’t suffer.

The main thing you can do is try to make every moment count. No one can make these decisions for you, but the one thing I can assure you is that you will learn from each of them.

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