Repeating a course isn't that uncommon. There are numerous challenges including: medical and mental health issues, personal concerns, time management challenges, university adjustment difficulties, not realizing you should have dropped the course, etc. that can play a role in how successful you are in a class.

Repeating a class

Regardless of your past situation, a repeat option allows you to show that the problem(s) that may have been present when you originally took a course will not impact you now.

Students in class smiling and laughing with professor.

Use your prior class experience

When repeating a class, invest time into thoughtful preparation and reflection. Simply continuing your original behavior, study stratagies, and hoping for “better luck” the second time is unwise. Making changes to your study approach, even small ones, can improve your chances for a better grade.

  • Consider taking the course as soon as you can so that the material is still fresh in your mind. Even if you failed, you learned more than you think you did.
  • Use prior class notes, assignments, and tests as review resources.
  • Consider the pros and cons of repeating the class with the same instructor (if other options are available).

What next?

Get help from the start 

Connect with classmates

  • Compare notes to fill-in any missing information.
  • Clarify understanding of a topic.
  • Ask for notes if you miss a class.
  • Join or form a study group.

Plan your time 

  • Make a study plan at the start of the semester. List the due dates of every assignment, and test. Then plan when you will do your reading, assignments, and reviewing. The assignment calculator can help with research, lab, and speech planning.
  • Identify the topics that you found particularly challenging during your prior class experience. Plan more study time for those topics.
  • Share your plan with family or a friend to help hold yourself accountable.
  • Try to schedule the class at a time of day where you are most attentive. 

Practice good study habits

  • Participate in class, take notes, ask questions
  • Read the required material, note questions to ask the instructor or to discus in your study group
  • Do your assignments and spend extra time on those that are worth the biggest portion of your grade
  • Make studying and reviewing a part of your daily routine
  • Remind yourself of your goals