Tuesday, November 16, 2010

How to not fail again or receive low marks

No one likes to fail or get ‘bad marks’ at school. But since we’re humans and make mistakes and blah blah blah, there might be a time (let’s say in our high schooling career for the sake of this blog) when we fail on a test, assignment or even a subject. Without really meaning to.
Frankly, some of my marks for some of my subjects have fell after being in the IB program. I know the same has happened to more than a few of my cohorts. The MLIIB posts on My life Is IB is further evidence.

However, this does not mean you should either a) not to IB or b) drop out of IB or c) become a robot and have no fun by working your metallic but off 24/7. Its life, you succeed at some things and can suck (or fail) at others. So the best thing to do is to suck it up and fix up your mistakes.

Here's a very general how-to

  • Get the correct answers for questions you have answered incorrectly. Do this as soon as you receive your test back.
  • If you don’t understand your teacher’s method/wording, find a classmate to get the correct answer from.
  • Redo the question without looking at the correct answer.
  • If possible, redo the test (at least the incorrect questions) at home, either mentally or writing by it all down.
  • Read the assessment criteria and see where you have lost marks
  • Get feedback from your teacher, even if they have given written feedback.
  • When doing the next assignment, read the assessment criteria and know where your weakness is, so you can avoid it.
  • If a new assignment is similar to your low marks/failed assignment (i.e: commentary for English, lab practical write-up for Biology), refer back to your low marks/failed task to check you're not repeating the same mistakes (e.g: having a poor intro for a commentary, not providing limitations in discussion for Biology write-up)
  • Most likely failed or received a just passing grade due to tests and assignments which have been failed or have received low marks. So do the above do avoid failing them.
  • Talk to your teacher about your weaknesses and how to overcome them (either on report collection day or even at recess/lunchtime)

Note: Confidence in yourself is quite important, as well as actually putting in effort. Stressing and being nervous can also be good, since some people work better under these conditions.