Establishing Achievable Goals For Academic Success
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Establishing Achievable Goals For Academic Success

Learning may be a difficult road with both triumphant and frustrating moments. You’re not the only one who struggles sometimes in school. Many kids encounter challenges while trying to succeed academically. The secret is to identify the underlying causes of the difficulty, establish realistic objectives, and create plans of action to keep moving forward. In this article you will learn what knowledge and skills are necessary to overcome these obstacles and create a more rewarding academic journey.





Table Of Contents

Why Am I Struggling In School?

How Do I Set Achievable Goals?

How Do I Sustain Progress When Things Get Hard?

Does School Ever Get Easier?

How Do I Seek Help?

The Bottom Line





Why Am I Struggling In School?


There are a number of possible causes for your academic difficulties. Some common culprits are as follows (Lodge et al., 2018):



Lack of Clear Goals: It’s easy to get lost and lose motivation when there’s no clear path ahead. A sense of purpose and direction for your studies can be obtained by setting specific academic goals.



Poor Time Management: It can be somewhat demanding to balance your social life, extracurricular activities, and classes. Delays, missing deadlines, and eventually a drop in academic performance are all consequences of poor time management practices.



Ineffective Study Habits: Success cannot be assured by merely devoting hours to learning. There are better ways to retain information and gain a deeper understanding of a subject than cramming the night before an exam or just using memorization.



Underlying Learning Difficulties: Learning disabilities such as dyslexia or ADHD can occasionally hamper academic achievement. To level the playing field, these challenges call for particular approaches and modifications.



External Factors: Your focus and capacity to concentrate in class can be greatly impacted by external circumstances such as stress, worry, or family problems.





How Do I Set Achievable Goals?


Once you know why you are having difficulty, it’s time to make attainable goals. You can get help from the following the SMART goals framework (Lovric & Howarth, 2021):



Specific: Goals should be specific and not broad. It is not enough to say “Do better.” Instead try to get a “B” in your math class or get a higher grade on your history essay. It’s best to be as detailed as possible.



Measurable: How will you know when your aim is accomplished? Getting a particular grade on an exam, doing a predetermined amount of practice problems, or actively participating in a predetermined number of class discussions could all be part of this.



Attainable: Stay grounded. Although having ambition is admirable, aiming too high can be upsetting. Think about your advantages and disadvantages right now and make realistic goals that you can work toward.



Relevant: Make sure your objectives line up with your ultimate academic objectives. Do you want to keep your scholarship eligibility intact by maintaining a high GPA? Or are you trying to get better at writing for a particular professional path?



Time-bound: Give yourself a deadline to meet your objectives. Setting a deadline, whether it be for the end of the semester, a particular exam day, or a set amount of weeks, helps you stay on track and holds yourself accountable.



The SMART Framework helps you come up with goals that are specific to your particular situation.




Photo By : Max Fischer




How Do I Sustain Progress When Things Get Hard?


Even the most committed students have phases when it’s challenging to maintain their motivation. When things get hard, try these tactics to stay strong (Johnson, 2014):



Reward Yourself: Honor your accomplishments, no matter how modest. Did you finally understand a difficult idea? Give yourself a break or a tiny treat as a reward. Acknowledgment sustains your motivation and strengthens productive study habits.



Find a Study Buddy: Studying with a fellow student who is aligned with your objectives can be very helpful. You can test one another, hold one another responsible, and provide support to one another.



Create a Dedicated Study Space: You can concentrate better and get the most out of your study sessions if you have a dedicated space free from distractions.



Develop a Routine: Creating a regular study timetable aids in time management and the development of positive study habits. To prevent burnout, schedule specific study times for every class and make sure to incorporate breaks.



Seek Help Early: Never hesitate to seek for assistance when you need it. Consult with your instructors during office hours and make use of the institute’s tutoring resources.





Does School Ever Get Easier?


To put it briefly, school does get easier. The workload may seem less daunting if you establish productive study habits, enhance your time management abilities, and learn more about the subjects you’re studying.


Nevertheless, the phrase “easy” is relative. With every step you take in your academic career, the content will unavoidably get harder. The secret is to develop the skills necessary to take on increasingly difficult assignments. Never forget that the abilities and information you acquire in your academic pursuits will set you up for success in your subsequent undertakings.





How Do I Seek Help?


Finally, asking for assistance is a sign of strength and perseverance rather than a sign of weakness. Don’t be afraid to ask for help—whether it’s by means of joining study groups, addressing questions with your teachers, or contacting academic support services. Your academic performance is a priority to your teachers. Many provide office hours where you can talk about study techniques, ask questions about the course material, or obtain assistance with certain assignments.


To enhance your understanding, look into additional online materials, textbooks, and educational platforms. There is a wealth of information on the internet that is just waiting to be discovered. Make use of it for your benefit. A few such examples of online resources include Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL), Khan Academy, and Crash Course. These websites provide materials, practice questions, and free instructional videos to help you improve.





The Bottom Line 


The key to academic achievement is setting attainable goals. You can unlock the doors to a better academic future by understanding the causes behind your troubles, creating SMART goals, overcoming obstacles, enjoying the trip, and asking for assistance when necessary.


Keep in mind that although there may be many challenges along the way, success is attainable with perseverance and effort. Thus, dare to dream, embark on your journey, and observe as the seeds of your endeavors grow into the bounty of success.











Johnson, W. L. (2014). Strategies for Improving School Performance.


Lodge, J. M., Kennedy, G., Lockyer, L., Arguel, A., & Pachman, M. (2018). Understanding Difficulties and Resulting Confusion in Learning: An Integrative Review. Frontiers in Education, 3.


Lovric, K., & Howarth, D. (2021). Goals and Priorities.







Written By: Dr. Wasif MD

Edited by: Madison Vargas, BS

Medically Reviewed By: Dr. Kyle Zrenchik, PhD, LMFT

Published : 06/14/24


Disclaimer: ALL IN Therapy Clinic aims to improve people’s lives. We do this through providing effective mental health counseling by passionate professionals. Inspired by this, we write content for your own education. Also, our content is researched, cited, reviewed, and edited by licensed mental health professionals. However, the information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Additionally, it should not be used in place of the advice of a qualified healthcare provider.

Written and reviewed by

Madison Vargas

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