The mid-semester slump… CU students know it all too well. It is the time of year when all of the motivation you had at the start of the year is now out the door, and procrastination and The Hill are becoming your best friends. With these 10 simple tips, you can turn your semester around and get back on the path to success.

1. Calculate your projected grade point average on MyCUInfo

Once on your MyCUInfo account, scroll down to view your schedule. Select the button that says “Calculate Your GPA”, then input the highest grades that you think you can receive in each of your courses.  After finding your highest possible GPA, calculate your GPA using the lowest grades you think you could receive in the class. Finally, average these two numbers. This average is a good way to see what your GPA will look like at the end of the semester, and will motivate you to reach the highest possible GPA you calculated.

When you realize there’s still hope for this semester.


2. Drop classes while you still can, save your GPA and do a Maymester

If you have calculated your GPA and you aren’t liking the looks of it, drop the class(es) that is lowering your grade. A large part of the mid-semester slump is losing motivation because of the hole you have dug yourself into by not keeping up with assignments. By dropping a class not only are you freeing up more time to study for your remaining classes, but you also remove the stress of having a bad grade on your transcript. A Maymester is the best time to knock out those pesky lectures that you are struggling with, as professors in the summer tend to go easier on their classes.

When your fall professor who you dropped is also your summer professor.

3. Take care of yourself first, school always comes second

By the time you hit mid-semester you have been so caught up with school and social events that you have had barely any time to look after yourself! A good way to get motivated and do well in school is to feel good about yourself. Take time to go to the store and get fresh food, go to the gym, and groom yourself in a way you feel most confident. There’s a reason why people say “dress well, test well”!


4. Get your priorities straight

As said above, you come first always. However, school is important and needs to be top priority over other things. Don’t let yourself watch all of Stranger Things: Season 2 before you finish your sapling online. Study for an hour for the test you have in 3 days, rather than watch the new episode of Survivor.

5.  Spend at least 3 hours a week at Norlin Library

It’s easy to get into the routine of coming home after class, getting unready, and sitting down for a night of Netflix-ing and munching. Making yourself spend a minimum of 3 hours a week at the library is a great way to keep yourself focused on your studies. At home there are many distractions, however, at Norlin you have a place to be distraction free. Without distractions, studying goes much faster which allows you to spend more time doing what you want.

The first time you go to the library and you see people you know from each of your classes.

6. Actually go to your classes

Now, I know- no one wants to go to class. However, this is one of the best ways to get out of the mid-semester slump. Chances are you haven’t been going to most early morning classes you have or even lectures, but a great way to start feeling motivated is to attend those classes. The biggest challenge of this is just making yourself do it; yet, once you do it will make your whole day more productive. Being able to attend a lecture and actually understand what the professor is talking about is one of the best feelings and will surely motivate you to knock out the pesky class work you have.

When your professor says its a movie day

7. Go on a hike

Now, this may seem a bit counter-intuitive after spending all of this time talking about doing work and staying focused. Hikes are a good way to disconnect from what is going on around you and keep you from thinking about the first part of the semester. Remove the stress and step into the second part of the semester with a fresh and positive perspective. Being in Colorado, there are so much more opportunities to get active and spend time outdoors. Take advantage of the flat irons, and give yourself a moment to reflect on and relieve your stresses.

8. Party on Thursdays only if you will make it to Friday’s classes

Too many times you will miss out on the chance of doubled clicker points or extra credit questions on quizzes when you miss Friday classes. Often times professors know that most students will not be coming in after a ‘Thirsty Thursday’ or on a game day, so they incentivize coming to class by giving out these extra credit opportunities. When you are stuck in the mid-semester slump you can pick up your grades by getting all extra credit opportunities. So, one of the best bits of advice you’ll get is to skip the late night on Thursdays if you can’t handle your hangover.

When you get invited to a party but you have a test tomorrow

9. Study and work on homework with friends

Being in a group with people working on a common goal will certainly motivate you. By working through problems together and helping each other learn the material, not only will you get better grades but you will be building friendships as well. When everyone can come together and suffer over the same thing it makes you stronger as a group and will better prepare you for tests and homework.

10. Confidence is key!

Even if you can’t pull your grades up for the semester at this point, you need to know that your GPA isn’t everything. As stated above, Maymesters are a great way to recover points that you may have lost during a normal semester. The sooner you realize that grades aren’t the end all be all, the sooner you will be able to fully enjoy college without the stress. Confidence comes when you give something your all, and despite what the end results may be you are still proud of yourself. As long as you are confident that will translate into your school work and your motivation.



Payton Theobald

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