Whenever people hear that someone failed a course or performed woefully in an exam, the very first thought that comes to most minds is that "he or she didn't prepare well."
Indeed, nobody celebrates a failure, and everyone only wants to see you doing well. But when the tides aren't turning for you as a student, it is not uncommon to find your friends, family, and loved ones mocking you.
But is “lack of preparation” the only reason students fail? According to a recent report, it has been revealed that over 68% of students enter their examinations fully prepared, yet only a meager 22% come out of the exam with an excellent score.
What then is the problem? You must be wondering. Why would a student study hard and still fail at their school work? Could they have been studying wrongly? Are the questions too tough or out of the scope of the lessons given? Far from it!
Here are some of the biggest reasons why students study hard and still fail in school.
Many students crash read instead of studying in advance
Many students you speak with today will have you believe that many of the courses they've failed or performed poorly at were courses they truly prepared for. But the real question is, "how did they go about their preparation for those exams?” Did they begin their study a few days before the exam, or do they crash-read all they’ve learned in the course a day before the exam?
The most common style of study amongst students today is cramming and crash-reading. A situation whereby they try to overload their brains with many of the concepts they’ve learned all semester all in one or two nights. Yes, your brain can be so sharp that it takes all that you throw at it, but have you ever wondered why your school curriculum decided to spread the entire semester course work over a span of months?
If they thought your brain could handle the knowledge of those concepts, why not feed them to you all in one class and examine you based on that?
The truth remains that academic knowledge is not something you gain in one night; instead, it is a result of consistent work. And if you want to put an end to the bad track record of studying hard and failing at your exams, then you need to start reading and studying in advance. Pick your books today and start studying; instead of waiting for the exam week!
No study style
Many students today don’t even know the study-style that works for them. As a result, they keep studying hard using the wrong style, and they continue to get bad results. Perhaps your friends are great at studying in groups, and as a result, you have also been studying with them in groups. But how has that been going for you? All students are not created equal! That your friends do it that way, doesn’t mean you have to follow suit and join their reading groups.
Take your time to understand the style that works for you and stick with it. It could be day-reading instead of night sessions, group reading instead of reading singly, reading with past questions instead of guide-less reading. Whatever it is you find your style to be, always work with that!
Over-confidence and lack of trust in God
When students read on their own, they’re planning to fail. More often, students experience retarded success or poor academic performance because they refuse to hook on to the Author of success – God. He’s the giver of wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. And the minute you decide to believe only in your personal abilities instead of God’s strength is the moment you set your path to failure.
Always pray to him before, after, and during your examinations. When doubts start to rear their ugly heads, do not hesitate to talk to your God and believe that he’ll come through for you. To further improve your trust and relationship with God on your academic endeavors, you can check out these bible verses about studying and make them your watchwords.
Lesser retentive memory: difficulty in retaining Subject Matter
All students are not the same. There are those who need less time to understand and retain the subject matter. However, there are also those who, in spite of their hard work, find it difficult to recollect the same during assessments. It is actually one of the very common reasons why students who relentlessly burn the midnight oil still fail.
If you find that you're this type of student, revisit reason #1 above and study in advance. This will help you remember the things you've studied better, as you'll have more time to study the same concepts, time and time and again.
Students who belong to broken families or families with problems often find it difficult to transform their hard work into solid results. The emotional instability around them often has a direct bearing on their well-being in terms of psychological health too. So even though the student might be working hard trying to turn a blind eye to all that is disturbing around him, his subconscious mind might take over and hinder desired results.
Sometimes when the moment of truth comes, students freeze due to fear or anxiety. Yes, test anxiety is very common in students. Nervousness, nausea, or just uneasiness might take over once in the examination hall. At that moment, no amount of hard work comes to the rescue, and things eventually go down the drain. Perhaps in such cases, a psychological consultant to deal with such fears must be brought in the picture; their dreams and aspirations might remain unfulfilled.
If I may ask you: Are you really in the right department? Are you studying a course that interests you or you're being forced into that faculty? Sometimes students are forced into a particular discipline by parents, or at times they make the wrong choice due to peer pressure. Whatever might be the reason, a student who does not have the aptitude for science cannot really do well in it no matter what lengths she travels. Careful choice, of course, is essential in ensuring that a student's hard work is rewarded.
Bad time management
Succeeding in an exam is as much about your time management skills as it is about the number of sleepless nights you've had. All your study times and efforts will count for nothing if you spend more time than necessary on a particular question.
Sometimes a student might be prepared to solve every question that appears in the paper but just then emerges one deal-breaker. Yes, a question that comes into view out of the blue and just doesn't seem to get solved. It is at such questions that students get stuck at, till it gets too late to attempt the rest of the paper well.
To counter this, always begin your examinations by allotting a certain amount of time to each question. Once the time is up for a certain question, move on to the next. But while allotting the question times, make time to go over the questions again, so that you can make corrections, perfect any incomplete questions, and round off all the sessions.
There is only a fine line between success and failure, and your ability to identify this line will make or break your academic career. Take your time to identify which of the above reasons apply to you and work on making necessary corrections. Trust me; you’re just a few adjustments away from becoming the A-student you’re meant to be.