How to Be a Good Student

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HOW TO BE A GOOD STUDENT A practical guide to assist you in maximizing your learning opportunities. Compiled by Mr. G. Dunn

Good students have certain key traits that make them what they are. Chief among them are academic resilience, attending classes, time management, exam preparation, thinks critically, behaves and participates in class. 1

How to Be a Better Student

1. A good student is well rounded and tries to make time studying and social activities. They set up a study schedule so that there studying does not get interrupted by other things. They make time for socializing in order to counter the stress that comes from all their classes. 2. A good student also makes time for their interests because I believe if a student does things that they like it will be easier for them to be successful because they won’t feel so stressed all the time. 3. A good student is not necessarily a student that studies hard and gets the best grades. A good student should be a student that can balance school with a social life. At the same time the student should know when to buckle down and focus on work. 4. A good student wants to learn is excited about what they are doing. They work hard but still are involved in extra activities like dance sports volunteer work. 5. A good student is responsible for their own learning as well as keeping time management skills. A student should also apply themselves to the homework and the activities shown in class to daily life. 6. A good student wants to learn. They want to go to class to learn what the teacher provides for them. They want to develop into a better writer or get better at math. The characteristics of a good student include the drive to achieve their goals in life academically. The student is willing to study independently and ask for assistance when necessary. He/She is also willing to participate in class and be involved in things that will help propel their learning outside of the classroom. 7. A good student is self-motivated independent and focused. A good student is always willing and ready to learn. They take the information learned in class and apply it to the the real world. Self-motivation and enthusiasm are key because with these characteristics they can focus on their own educational goals. 8. Good students listen in class and don't talk to others when they're not supposed to. They do their homework on time and don't cheat. Also they go to class everyday on time prepared to learn.

9. The student must be willing to do their own part at SCHOOL. Which includes being academically involved by doing home work readings and staying on top of all the work along with asking questions that he/she may have. Along with communicating with other students and resources available to them. A good student also:

A. attends class is #1 B. attentive and trying to learn. C. does all the homework on time assists other students D. does extra research to learn more about the topic beyond what is assigned. E. behaves and follows rules in class. F. uses critical thinking and reflection to get well-honed answers. G. does not just parrot what the teacher says. H. participates in class. ACADEMIC RESILIENCE What characteristics separate a good student from a mediocre student? To best answer this question, we need to look at the students' personality more than at their in-born abilities. Characteristics of a Good Student A good student usually demonstrates a number of characteristics. In-born characteristics like intelligence and cognitive skills do play a role; a child must be able to learn in order to achieve academic achievement. But most students in any given classroom have average - and similar abilities. Still, some students stand out more than others, getting better grades and grasping material more deeply. Why? Exposure to material, parental involvement, and contextual factors like the child's school and teachers are important. But psychologists and teachers are increasingly realizing how central a child's personality is to academic success. In particular, an aspect of personality called academic resilience may be key to your tween's success in school. What is Academic Resilience? Academic resilience is a more specific version of the larger concept of resilience. Academic resilience refers to a student's willingness to persevere at academic tasks even when they are frustrated. In other words, academically resilient children do not give up, no matter what faces them.

An Example of Differences in Academic Resilience Let's say that 10-year-olds Roger and Tory have nearly identical math skill sets and intellectual aptitude. Roger, however, has high academic resilience while Tory has low academic resilience. When their teacher introduces a challenging new type of math problem, they probably both experience frustration and make similar errors. Due to his personality, though, Roger is much more likely than Tory to fight to master the new math skill.

Why Does Academic Resilience Matter? Learning anything is an inherently frustrating process. How can it not be? If we knew it all already, we would not be "learning"! Therefore, having a personality that is more likely to plow on despite frustrations - that is, being academically resilient - is a major factor in academic success and in helping a child become a good student. Using the previous example, Roger's success at the math skill is not based on some innate "intelligence" or "talent" with math - as we said, he and Tory are equally skilled - but rather occurs because he has greater fortitude to learn the skill, whatever it takes. As a result, Roger will be more likely to get strong grades and to be considered a "good student" than Tory. Tory may eventually master the new skill, but it will probably take him much longer. In addition, as academic challenges increase in later grades, he may simply give up trying. How you can Support Characteristics of a Good Student in Your child's While personality is partially in-born, it can be greatly influenced by experience. Therefore, you can promote academic resilience in your child and help him become a good student by encouraging him or her to not give up when hard times arise. You can also model academically resilient behavior by demonstrating how you do not give up when you face intellectual challenges - like trying to find an error in your check register, or mastering a new computer operating system at home or at work. Let your child be an active part of your journey through frustration to mastery. By watching you be persistent, they'll be more likely to act the same way themselves.


McTigue, Erin M., Washburn, Erin K., & Liew, Jeffrey. Academic Resilience and Reading: Building Successful Readers. The Reading Teacher. 2009. 62: 422-432.

Characteristics of a Successful Student Many students new to college do not know what it takes to be successful in the college environment. They understand good and bad grades in a general way, and they sense that they should attend classes, but that is where their knowledge begins and ends. Most instructors know what a good student is - and is not. For one thing, a good student is not necessarily the most intelligent individual in the class. The following is a list of some characteristics of good students. This list is a description of what a hard-working student does and what a teacher likes to see. By learning these characteristics, you may better understand the day-to-day and class-to-class behavior of successful students.

The idea is to provide you with guidelines you can follow which will help you get down to the business of becoming a serious, successful student. 1. Successful students attend classes regularly. They are on time. They listen and train themselves to pay attention. If they miss a session, they feel obligated to let the instructor know why before class begins, if possible, and their excuses are legitimate and reasonable. They make sure they get all missed assignments (by contacting the instructor or another student), and understand specifically what was covered in class. Successful students take responsibility for themselves and their actions.

2. Successful students take advantage of extra credit opportunities when offered. They demonstrate that they care about their grades and are willing to work to improve them. They often do the optional (and frequently challenging) assignments that many students avoid.

3. Successful students are attentive in class. They don't talk, read, or stare out windows. In other words, they are polite and respectful, even if they get a little bored. They also participate in class even if their attempts are a bit clumsy and difficult. They ask questions that the instructor knows many other students may also have.

4. Successful students see their instructors before or after class or during office hours about grades, comments on their papers, and upcoming tests. Successful students end up at their instructor's office door at least once during the semester. They'll go out of their way to find the instructor and engage in meaningful conversation. These students demonstrate to the instructor that they are active participants in the learning process and that they take the job of being a student seriously.

5. Successful students turn in assignments that look neat and sharp. They take the time to produce a final product that looks good, and reflects of a care and pride in their work. Successful students seem driven to complete their assignments. All work and assignments are turned in, even if some of their responses are not brilliant.

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