An article in the US News college blog called “4 Ways to Bounce Back from a Subpar Junior Year” advised students on how to bounce back from an academically disappointing junior year. Many students are faced with test scores, grades or leadership that isn’t in line with their goals for college, but it’s not too late. US News recommends first acknowledging that you didn’t succeed where you would have liked to, but to “set aside your mistakes and assume a positive attitude. Otherwise, it is nearly impossible to make progress when you dwell too heavily on your mistakes.”
- Acknowledge but don’t dwell on your poor performance
- Determine degree of necessary progress
- Creative a short term plan for summer
- Create a long-term response plan
Hughes College Prep recommends meeting with one of our advisors, in person or online, in order to figure out exactly where you are and how to get you where you want to go next fall. Realistic expectations combined with a dose of optimism and a lot of hard work can help you find colleges that see all your strengths, regardless of one tough year.
Pinpointing the areas that need improvement going into your senior year, particularly in test prep or with your grades, can be the most crucial step. The US News college blog explains that “If your junior-year grades were your principal disappointment, commit to reviewing material for your senior year courses and building on the material you have already learned, such as with math. If your standardized test score was your deepest woe, spend the summer studying more intensively. Set a minimum number of hours per week to study for the ACT or SAT, and then stick to that plan.”
Another strategy we recommend? Seek outside help. If your math grade suffered because of a difference in teaching-learning style, find a tutor or join an after-school math program, and help out both your future math grades and your ACT/SAT score. This can be just as useful with leadership or volunteering. Hughes College Prep can help you determine exactly what your leadership and grade goals should be to align with your college list, and can guide you through a better senior year.
Read the rest of the US News college blog’s advice here, or get started on turning your summer and senior year around and contact us.