5 answers

How did you move on after failing your first college course?

Asked Fort Collins, Colorado

As the semester is ending. I will have officially failed my first college course related to my major. It seems like the end of the world to me but that's because I overreact most of the time. Failing has slowed my motivation to continue with college. I just want to know how anyone who has been in this position dealt with it. #college #engineering #engineer #stem #classes #college-student #failure

5 answers

Eva’s Answer

Updated New York, New York

Don't let one failure stop you. Everyone fails at times. Give yourself a specific amount of time to feel bad about it. After that, get started on something to move forward. It doesn't have to be big, as long as it is a step towards forward. Sometimes it can be taking a shower and putting on clean clothes.

I would consider why you failed the class to help figure out how to move forward.
-Outside factors taking up time, leaving you not enough to focus - figure out if those distractions will subside or what you can do to control them. Maybe something happened during the semester, maybe you need to take fewer classes at once, maybe you are just adjusting to the independence of college. -Uninterested in the topic - It could be a sign this isn't the right field of study for you. One thing to keep in mind though, just because the academia may not interest you, doesn't mean the job that comes from having completed this field of study doesn't interest you. -Struggling to understand - Just because you struggle, doesn't mean you won't eventually do well. In fact, people who struggle often come out with a much deeper understanding of the topic and ability to persevere through challenges. But you should make sure it's something you want to persevere through.

Good luck!

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very much
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thank you Eva
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so nice thank you
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your answer nice
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Thank you.

Sally’s Answer

Updated Frome, England, United Kingdom

When I failed an important semester in my BA, I wanted to give up college completely. I felt such a failure and it even made me ill. But something inside me said, 'just carry on'. So I did - I didnt want to look back on this experience, in years to come and still feel a failure. I wanted to resolve it by carrying on regardless. So I did and I am so glad that I did.

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thank you
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thank you sally
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Thank you.

Flint W.’s Answer

Updated Dallas, Texas

Augusta,

When I was in college I failed one course not once, but twice. It turned out the third time was the charm, and the material finally clicked with me, and i was able to get through with an "A", setting the curve on almost every exam and quiz. I was massively discouraged, and watched my former class mates move on in the program while I was stuck trying to pass a course that it seemed no one else had an issue with.

The best possible advice I can give is this:

1) Figure out WHY you failed, and don't fall into the trap of attempting to externalize everything. Something that you did kept you from succeeding, and once you've identified that (or those, if more than one) problem you can identify a path forward to eliminate the problem and succeed. For me, it was easy to blame the professor, so the second time around I switched to a different section and took it again, failing again with a DIFFERENT professor. I found out it was HOW I was studying for the course that was causing me to not retain any of the information from homeworks and lessons, once I changed my study habits success was quick and rewarding.

2) Don't dwell on self-doubt or being hard on yourself. Everyone fails, it's inevitable, especially if you're doing something worth doing. Accept that you've failed, and move forward with your life. Dwelling on the negative doesn't do anyone any good.

3) Speak with the professor, AT LENGTH. I know they're probably the last person you want to see right now, but they can give you invaluable insight into what you're doing wrong, where you can improve, and how to move forward.

4) Speak with a tutor in the subject, whether this is through your college, through a third party organization, or even just through a classmate that did very well in the course. The latter was what I did, and he was able to show me what I'd done wrong and help me come up with a studying gameplan to succeed the next time around.

I hope this helps! Hang in there, you got this!

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Thank you.

Ken’s Answer

Updated Cleveland, Ohio

I commend you on seeking help!

The first thing that I would ask is in what year are you in you college career? and How are you doing with your other courses?

There is quite a transition from high school to college. If you have just begun you college courses, you might talk to your professor to get suggestions that he/she might have and you might talk to a school counselor to see if there might be things that you could do to help develop better study habits.

The second thing that I would look at is to determine the appropriateness of your career/major choice.

You might want to revisit you career/major choice. One could go to the head of alumni relations at your school to make arrangements to talk to graduates of that school who are in your intended career/major to see if there is really a match and then talk to a school counselor to investigate your career/major choices.

Those are the two most important things that I would examine. Adjustments can be made in each.

Please let me know how these work, then I will know better what to suggest next. I am sure that you can work things out. I would like to help. This is not the end of the world.

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Thank you for your response. I am at the end of my first year of college. I am doing average in my other classes granted I did have to learn how to learn.
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Best of luck! I would really like to know how this turns out and see if I can help more in any way! I am sure that you have a lot of potential (more than you think), and I would like to see how we can help you succeed!!

Christina’s Answer

Updated Portland, Oregon

Hi Augusta,

Failing is part of the learning process. Don't let it get you down and let it be a chance to learn from it and grow. I failed calculus in college, not once, but twice. After the first time, I adjusted my studying habits, visited the math help center at my college and enlisted a friend with more calculus experience to be my mentor so I had someone to ask one on one questions. I took the class again over the summer at my local community college because there were much smaller classes than at my university. I got a C- the second time around, which was not high enough to transfer back to my university. At that point, I decided to reconsider my Computer Science major because I was going to have to take at least 3 more sessions of calculus if I decided to continue. Ultimately, I changed my major to Telecommunications because it still encompassed the things I was interested in and did not have the calculus requirements.