6 Ways To Be In Control of Your Final Grade

Let’s face it: there’s nothing more nerve wrecking than constantly refreshing the webpage in hopes that your professor has finally posted your final grade! With your GPA in mind, you think to yourself, “I worked pretty hard this semester, I should be receiving no lower than an A-.” *Many late hours* Grades up! C-!!??

Trust me, I’ve been there. There are many steps you can take on how to handle a grade you are unsatisfied with. Here are some things I do that give me confidence in my work.

1. Make your very own assignment tracker

One of my favorites! We turn in work then receive more work from our professors. Professors also have to grade hundreds of assignments and exams. Having an assignment tracker works in your favor in case your professor loses your assignments or if you want to track your points to help estimate your final grade. I like my assignment tracker to have: the date the item was handed it, date returned, the name of the assignment and grade. You can use a planner, calendar or customize your own like I did!

2. The syllabus is your BFF

Okay maybe not forever, just until the end of the semester. A syllabus tells you everything you need to know about the course and what your professor expects you to learn from the course. One of the important things on a syllabus is the grading scale. It tells you how much percentage your homework, quizzes, midterms and finals are worth. If I know I’m going to be absent, I like to look at my syllabus ahead of time to let the professor know and find out if I’m allowed to turn in the work ahead of time.

3. Get to know your professor

Good communication is key. Don’t wait until the last minute to talk about a concern you’re having. Whether you’re going to be absent, you don’t understand a topic or just want to further discuss something that interests you, talk to your professor.

4. Stay organized

This one’s easier said than done, but once you give it a try and commit to it, I promise being organized will prepare you for anything that comes your way. If you are disorganized it can cause a chain reaction of unnecessary situations. I currently have 2 jobs and go to school full time. I try my best to not let work affect school nor school affect work. If I were disorganized I would probably be stressed out if I did not practice time management.

5. “How can I use this in the future?”

Sometimes I have trouble paying attention in class if I don’t understand the material. When learning, try to keep an open mind and figure out how you can apply what you’re learning to the real world. It also helps when courses relate to each other, so you can use one course to help you excel in the other. For example, I am currently taking Math and Accounting courses. The Algebra I learn in my math course helps me complete Accounting equations. This helps to better my understanding and gives me confidence in what I’m learning.


Obviously to pass a class you have to get good grades, but these A’s will not just be handed to you, you have to put in the work!

  • Study ahead of a time, avoid the anxiety by studying well in advance.
  • Meet reliable classmates you can study and share notes with.
  • Never say no to extra credit, it may save your grade in the end.
  • Try your best to complete ALL assignments.
  • Strive for perfect attendance.

Okay! That’s all for my tips to help you be in control of your final grade. Before I practiced all of these methods, I had a hard time in school. Now I’m part of the dean’s list in my school! Whether this will be your first time attending college, you’re a returning student or just want to improve your grades, you can now control your final grade and have confidence. Warm wishes to you all!

How do you stay in control of your final grade? Share your tips in the comments.


Kimberly Elizabeth Lyons studies at Laguardia Community College as a Healthcare Management Major. Kimberly was born and raised in NYC and her parents are from the beautiful island of Jamaica. She enjoys writing, technology, traveling, learning and sharing new things. The hobbies she enjoys are what inspired her to pursue a job as a Student Ambassador with Cengage. Kim wants to connect with students just like her, in discovering ways to travel throughout their learning journey smoothly. Helping others is a part of working together to build greatness. That’s why Kim hopes to someday open her own wellness center and contribute to society and its’ future. Kim enjoys any and everything creative. In her spare time, she creates makeup tutorials to share tips and the latest trends with family and friends. She also enjoys expressing her creativity through fashion. To stay fit, Kim enjoys doing yoga and meditating.

One of Kim’s greatest strengths is her work ethic. She enjoys setting goals and achieving them. She loves that every job she’s had has helped prepare her for her future career. Kim loves interacting with people from different cultures, so in her spare time, she volunteers at LaGuardia by tutoring ELA students in English. She would like to share a quote by Maya Angelou that she lives by, “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

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