Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Life > Academics

5 Tips for Academic Success from a College Senior

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SJSU chapter.

As a soon-to-be college graduate, I’ve grown a lot as a student since the first day of freshman year. If the last four years have taught me anything, it’s how to take advantage of the resources offered to me and develop effective habits in the midst of a busy college schedule. 

If you aren’t sure where to start, or need some fresh ideas on how to upgrade your study habits, you’re in luck. I’ve learned a lot of important lessons during my time in college, so I wanted to highlight five tips that have made all the difference. 


It can be difficult to keep track of important dates when you don’t have a good way to organize them, but a planner can help you avoid that. I would be nothing without my planner. I use it to organize everything – from classes and due dates to appointments and personal plans.  

I purchased my weekly planner from Target. I love this one because it has a monthly and weekly view, making everything easy to visualize. It doesn’t matter what kind of planner you have as long as it works for you. 

There are also lots of good digital options like Google Calendar, Notion, and Good Notes. If you choose to go that route, there are countless online planner tutorials that can help you get started.


This may sound obvious, but in my experience, having good attendance in your classes will make a huge difference in your final grade and overall success in the course. 

Although most professors use online platforms to communicate nowadays, attending class gives you the chance to ask questions, learn the material better, and make friends with other students who can help you throughout the course.

Attending class regularly also allows you to build a good rapport with your professor. If you make a mistake or need an extension, a professor who knows you is much more likely to have grace for you than one who barely recognizes you. You can make an even better impression by attending office hours a few times throughout the semester! 


No matter what you are interested in, there is probably a club for it on your college campus. 

Although classes should be your main priority during college, creating opportunities for yourself to have fun and meet new people is critical to having a well rounded college experience.

You’re welcome to join as many different clubs as you want, but I would suggest joining at least one club that is related to your major or future career. That way, you can network with like-minded people and gain valuable experience that will look amazing on your resume. 

It truly is never too early (or too late) to start building your network and preparing for the career you want to pursue after college. Plus, you’ll get to make new friends and have fun while doing it—it’s a win-win!


Throughout my college career, nobody has been more helpful than my academic advisor. 

Choosing classes and making sure you’re on track to graduate is vitally important, but it can also be really stressful. Luckily, your advisor is here to help, and they are specialized in your major and the requirements that go along with it. You can also find advisors to help you with your minor or GE credits. 

When I first started as a transfer student at San José State, I met with my advisor and she designed a detailed two year plan for me to ensure I would take the right courses and graduate by my desired date. 

Nothing’s worse than realizing you signed up for a class that doesn’t satisfy any graduation requirements and now you have to pile on more classes before graduation. In order to avoid this, I’d highly recommend setting up a meeting with your advisor as early as possible to stay on track with your requirements. 


If you’re anything like me and haven’t learned much about career prep during your time in college, I’ll be the first to tell you that creating aLinkedIn account is the key to getting started. 

Looking back as a senior in college, I really wish I would have started prepping for my career a lot sooner. LinkedIn is a great way to make connections in your field of interest or meet people who currently study at your university. 

When creating your LinkedIn account, it is crucial that you make your LinkedIn profile look professional in order to make a good impression on potential employers. This may sound intimidating, but luckily there are a lot of tutorials available on the internet that can teach you how to make an amazing LinkedIn profile. 

Even if you are far from graduating, LinkedIn can be used to find people with similar career goals, mentors, internships, and future job opportunities. If you want to be prepared for life post-grad, I’d highly recommend starting your LinkedIn profile as soon as possible!

Have any other tips for being a successful college student? Let us know, @HerCampusSJSU.

Hannah is a fourth-year student at San Jose State majoring in Public Relations with an emphasis in Journalism. Outside of class, she can be found reading cheesy romance novels, studying at local coffee shops, shopping at Target, or rewatching her favorite TV shows.