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Failing a Class in College – What Now?

If you fail a class in college, it may feel like the end of the world, but it won’t be – everyone fails in college at some point. Many professors want their students to pass, so if you are failing a class or retaking one, schedule time to meet your professor and ask, “how can I pass this course?”

What to do if You Fail a Class in College

You can get tutoring, submit late homework, or retake the course. If you are failing a course in college:

  1. Talk to your professor to tell them you want to pass. You can ask to submit late homework or request one-on-one tutoring.

  2. Ask questions during class. It’s easy to lose interest as a professor lectures but concentrating and asking questions will help you learn.

  3. Schedule time for homework. Scheduling a specific time for homework is an easy fix to pass a course.

  4. Drop the class if there is still time. Most colleges provide free tutors who can review assignments and prepare you for the next semester.

What Happens if You Fail a Class in College?

Your GPA will drop, but you can retake the course to increase your GPA. Here is what happens if you fail a class:

  1. Make sure your financial aid will allow you to retake a course and learn what the financial implications will be for failing a course.

  2. Ask the professor to review what you failed so you know how to answer questions in future.

  3. Ask the professor to give you an “incomplete” grade. If you are granted an incomplete, get a tutor immediately and begin learning what you failed in the first semester.

  4. Explore academic support services and free tutoring in your college. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Intelligent people ask questions and seek help when they need it.

  5. Evaluate other academic majors that you can pass. Most college students change majors several times during their academic career.

You Failed a College Class, What Now?

Although failure can make you feel defeated, I will show you how to turn that defeat into inspiration.

Remember that we don’t often get second chances in life. So, we can be happy when the opportunity presents itself and we can give learning another shot. In fact, Henry Ford once said “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”

Even the most intelligent students (I included), have failed a college course. I failed statistics in graduate school. My GPA was 4.0 up until I enrolled in statistics. And, although the “F” was devastating at first, it proved to be the best thing that happened to me and the reason I graduated in a 2-year timeframe. See, only by failing that course did I realize the amount of work I needed to expend in order to pass it. By expending more effort, I eventually understood statistics enough to pass the Core test required to graduate. If I had passed statistics the first time without truly understanding it, I may never have passed the Core exam. So, look at failing as an opportunity

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