How to go from a C student to an A student overnight

a college studetn writing on his notebook

Written by Charaf Mrah

Hi there! I'm a Software Engineering major currently studying in college. The purpose of this website is to share my learnings and insights with you, in the hopes of providing value and assistance to those who may need it.

Updated Aug 23, 2020

While I never cared about the grades that I got in school, I realized that in order to get where I want I would really need to get good grades. I studied in 7 different schools in two different languages back in school. These changes changed my mentality for a couple of years as I went from the top students to literally one of the worst students for a few years. So I went from an A student to a C student and then back to an A student. I don’t feel any regret though, this is because now I have a perspective on all the different thinking patterns of different people at school.

However, in 12th grade (last year), my goals completely changed. I now had one year to graduate, and it’s the most important year in regards to grades when applying to universities. So, I knew I had to get the best grades possible, and so I went from an average student to one of the top students in the entire school overnight and getting an A+. I still think it was pointless to memorize things that I will forget anyway, but I still needed a good grade nonetheless. I would like to share with you some of the things that helped me today:

Start revising today:

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The best time to start revising your lessons is probably the first day of school. The second best time is now (assuming it’s today isn’t your first day at school lol). The earlier you realize this the more likely you’ll change that C to an A and become an A student. Starting early will mean many things:

  • You’ll have more free time overall
  • No stress
  • Easier to memorize information
  • An easy revision week before the exams

I never went full send on my studies, I always had time to relax and do other things (hence why I made this website). Because I started revising earlier, it meant that I would only need 30 minutes (1-hour max) of studying per day except for the final revision period. So I had time to do whatever I want from learning new skills to playing football and video games. There will be times where you’ll spend the whole day studying but they will be much easier than if you haven’t revised those 30 minutes per day.

Slow and steady wins:

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I personally used to sometimes get excited about studying, and so I get this rush and I sit for 3 hours straight solving math problems, and then you’ll never see me do the same for the entire year. Motivation can be a killer, you can either use it as fuel for your consistency or you can use it as the primary tank and end up with no gas 2 weeks into school.

The 30 minutes of studying per day that I talked about are much better than studying for an entire day once a week or month. Your brain won’t even function the same 30 minutes into anything even if you think you’re fine. In college however the 30 minutes might need to be 60, but always have breaks between them to let your brain reset.

Never compare yourself to others:

Photo by Tim Bogdanov on Unsplash

Comparing yourself to others might be the dumbest thing you could ever do. There’s no point in it and it achieves nothing. Going from a C student to an A student shouldn’t be because of other people’s pressure. Your goals are different than what your peers are. Always have an end goal and just look for that. I don’t care if someone has lower or higher grades than me, I just care about what they want to achieve. If your end goal is just getting higher marks to flex on others or so that your parents are proud of you, then you have a bigger problem than your grades. This might sound harsh but it’s the truth.

Nobody cares what Steve Jobs or Nicolas Tesla got in high school or even college. Their true value is in what they provided to the world. Compare yourself today to yourself yesterday, and aim to do better tomorrow. And remember that it’s never too late to change for the better or to start working on your dreams, or even finding your what are your dreams and goals.

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