DSC Academic Advising: Student With Low Grades
In a Specific Class
Often, students have difficulty with a discipline or a specific class. In these situations, the following suggestions should be helpful:
- Recommend that the student schedule an appointment with his/her instructor. During this meeting, the student could:
- discuss past performance on exams/assignments to determine how to perform differently on the next
- ask the instructor for recommendations on preparing class and exams/assignments
- ask if additional study aides are available (websites, videos, study guides, study sessions, old exams/quizzes, worksheets, mnemonic devices, etc.)
- request assistance in forming a study group
- Recommend Academic Resources
- Refer the student to Peer Education (Pope Center, Dean of Students office) for a tutor or discipline specific web tutorials and computer programs, or help with study skills or time management.
- Refer the student to Academic Coaching for assistance with creating a study plan, time management, and motivation.
- For Math and Natural Science classes, recommend that the student take advantage of the Math & Science Learning Center (SEQ 219)
- For Humanities classes or other courses with extensive writing, suggest that the student utilize the Writing Lab (LIA 315)
- In situations where general anxiety or subject specific anxiety is suspect, refer the student to the Counseling Center (Health Professions building, Room 266) for assistance.
- Submit an Academic Alert
- Issues with class participation, low grades, attendance, incomplete assignments
During an Isolated Semester
In some situations, strong students may exhibit a period where their grades are slipping. Generally, this decline is due to non-academic issues. Here are some of the most common issues reported by students and potential sources for help:
- Low Motivation due to Career/Major Ambivalence - Academic Coach
- Health Issues - refer to physician and/or Disability Support Services
- Mental Health Issues - CARE, Counseling Center
- Family/Relationship Issues - CARE team, Counseling Center
- Grief or Loss Issues - CARE team, Counseling Center
- Financial Problems - Financial Aid (Westcott Hall), Financial Fitness Learning Center (LIA 103)
- Attendance Issues due to childcare issues - refer to Bright from the Start to find a state certified provider
- Attendance Issues due to Work Schedule Change - discuss options (moving to a different section, requesting an incomplete grade, etc)
- Attendance Issues due to lack of transportation - refer those living in Dalton/Whitfield County to Whitfield County Transit Service
Other students may struggle for multiple semesters with little success. This persistent failure could be attrubuted to insuficient college readiness, a lack of motivation, immaturity, poor coping skills, chronic health/mental health issues, unrealistic expectations of ability or time commitment, etc.
In these situations, the student should consider taking time off until he/she has removed the obstacles to success. At the very least, the student should reduce his/her course load.
Resources for Students
Work in Progress - Please check back later
Developing Study Plans
Learning Styles and Strategies