By The Editorial Board
With less than a week of classes left in the semester, chances are most students have already pretty much cemented their grade, and as long as you are passing your classes, you shouldn’t be ashamed of a “below-average” grade.
Many students do not roll into finals with a chance to swing up into the next letter grade, despite the long study hours. Know that if you are someone who is about to finish with that annoying C in a class, you are not alone. If you can’t bring it up, you can’t bring it up. It’s that simple.
This is not an argument to stop working hard or start slacking off. It’s the fact that some classes are just hard for different people. Of course, you should always strive to claim a 4.0 GPA every semester, but that is not the reality for most students. Taking the passing grade in a class is perfectly fine and doesn’t diminish your intelligence by any means.
So many students come to Baylor with a perfect high school academic record, but high school is not college. There’s a reason it’s called higher education. If you feel inferior academically or feel unnecessary pressure to maintain a 4.0 GPA in college, let it go. Some classes are meant to be difficult, so work hard, pass the class and be proud of the grade you earn.
It’s true when you hear “Cs get degrees,” but that is no excuse not to put effort into each and every class you take. Strive for excellence, but know that you probably can’t conquer every class. It’s not unfathomable for someone to forget a quiz or cram for a test; these are normal things that college students experience. There are things outside of your control, so control what you can and don’t dwell on poor grades.
The average college grade is rising across the country to be a 3.15 GPA, which is essentially a B average. This has risen from a C average in the recent past, but theories speculate that grade inflation is a real factor in raising the average. If a B is average across the country, how many low Cs are balancing out those A+ students? You are not alone when you escape your hardest class.
And if you’re stressed about your grades playing a factor in attending graduate school — or whatever your next step may be — this message should also resonate with you. Yes, good grades may make you a better candidate for that slot, but admissions counselors know that you are more than a student in a classroom. Be excellent in school, but also showcase other things that you’ve done in college, such as internships and portfolios that add to who you are overall. That C on a transcript doesn’t fully describe who you are — keep that in mind.
Always do your best and work your hardest in each class. If you aren’t satisfied with your grades this year, don’t bring unnecessary pressure on yourself going into next semester. Don’t feel inferior to the people walking to class around you every day. Finish well, rest, refresh and come back next year prepared to control your classes.