Sometimes, the attention that surrounds the college essay, letters of recommendation, and standardized test scores clouds the most important part of your admissions profile, which is your academic achievement. Your high school academic record speaks volumes about what type of a student you are and how well you’re likely to perform academically in college. Here are few steps you can take now to improve your GPA and show prospective colleges that you’ve got what it takes:

  • Participate in class discussions. This is a surefire way to ensure your teachers notice you, and will likely work in your favor when it comes time to assign you an overall course grade. Teachers appreciate students who demonstrate an eagerness to learn, and your enthusiasm can potentially help make up for any shortcomings you may have when it comes to test-taking, essay writing, and so on.
  • Sit in the front of the classroom. Numerous studies show that simply sitting in the first few rows can cause you to participate more frequently in class discussions, which not only impresses your teachers but also helps you retain information better
  • Show up for class. Of course I mean physically – but also mentally. Enter classes rested and ready to learn. Turn your phone off (if you’re allowed to carry one), save figuring out your weekend plans for lunch period, and devote the marginal amount of time you actually have to be in class to paying attention to the subject matter at hand.
  • Complete assignments. Even though daily homework may seem boring and redundant, the grades you receive by doing it contribute to your overall GPA. Discipline yourself to turn in everything your teacher assigns, even if some of it seems unimportant.
  • Get enough sleep. This may seem obvious, but adequate sleep escapes most busy high school students. Turn off your cell phone at night, avoid caffeine late in the day, and make it a habit to get some daily exercise to help establish good sleeping habits.
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