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Develop an action plan (250 words or more) for the goal "Finish with a B or more in four classes this semester." What would you have to do to achieve your goal?

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Felicita Burton eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The stated goal of earning a grade of B in four classes requires a plan that incorporates the smaller goals within it: to earn a grade of B in one class and to repeat this achievement four times. The elements of the plan will depend on a number of factors, including the current grade that you are earning. If the student has completed similar classes in the past, the likelihood of earning a high grade in future will be influenced by past success.

As the goal is looking forward to the semester’s end, one important component is scheduling. Breaking the period into smaller components and establishing a set of milestones will make the project more manageable, thereby increasing success. One early step, therefore, will be to decide on a management strategy, including the appropriate format. For a project with four separate components, a spreadsheet (such as Excel) would be useful; you could create a separate column for each class and rows for the dates of assignments and exams.

For each class, the distinct plan must include prioritization of different components. For example, in the subjects where you typically have earned high grades, you would emphasize maintaining the previous level. If you have scored low in chemistry, for example, you could strategize about the best way to improve your comprehension. The plan should include meeting with your teacher early in the semester to discuss those strategies. Specific actions might include doing additional, non-credit homework or pre-tests and working with a tutor. Be sure to include factors such as adequate sleep and healthy diet that have been shown to stimulate brain activity.

An effective plan should include monitoring and periodic re-evaluation and adjustment. Monitoring and evaluation would ideally be done both before and after the scheduled activities that will affect your grade. Taking non-credit pre-tests before actual exams will offer an indication of the likelihood of achieving the desired grade. After an exam, schedule additional meetings with the teacher, and with the tutor if you have obtained one, to review problem areas. It is generally advisable to clear up existing problems that might inhibit learning new materials or mastering new skills.

Building positive incentives into the plan while maintaining consistency is also important. Schedule each incentive along with the required work. For example, if you earn a high grade, reward yourself by seeing a movie that weekend. Consistency means that if you get an A on your first quiz, do not assume you can stop studying. Trust that your plan is working and stay with it. Conversely, if the strategy chosen does not yield the desired grade, re-evaluate the plan and make necessary adjustments.

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