There are times when our class schedules and our lives do not complement each other. Dropping classes may seem like the only choice, but students must not make a hasty decision to do so.
Only after assessing the situation carefully and being informed should you decide whether to withdraw from a class.
First, be aware of your financial situation. If you receive a Bright Futures scholarship and decide to withdraw from a class, you will have to pay the money back before receiving funding for the next semester.
Also, students without 12 or more credit hours will not to receive financial aid. If withdrawing will drop you below 12 credit hours, the financial aid office may want all the money you spent at Governor’s Square Mall back as well.
When you drop a class that is necessary for you to matriculate through your curriculum, you will have to retake it at a greater expense. Whether you have to repay Bright Futures or take out more loans, dropping a class you need will cost you.
After assessing the financial aspect of the situation, consider your grades strategically. Dropping classes is a difficult decision for some, but for others it has become a habit. The only time you should drop a class is when it is clear you will make a C or lower. A C can heavily damage your GPA, more so than a D or an F. You can retake a class you have received a D or an F in through Florida A&M’s grade forgiveness program, but not with a C. You will have to live with that grade.
It is possible to recover from a poor start in the semester, but it takes extra effort and communication with your professors. Dropping a class may not be the solution to the problems you are having in the class. Retaking it does not guarantee success. You might do just as badly. Extra effort and studying may be the solution.
But sometimes you do have to drop a class. You do not want to mess up your GPA. Some people may think of it as quitting, but at the end of the day, you are trying to win the war of obtaining a degree. Not every classroom battle has to be won. It is better to drop the class today than live with the shame of failing a course.
But do not make a habit out of withdrawing. A transcript with too many W’s will look bad as well. In addition, dropping too many classes places you behind your peers. Make it easy on yourself. Work hard throughout the semester, and if you feel no matter how hard you try, you will not make a good grade, then by all means drop the class and start fresh.
It does have a bright side, though. Once you drop the class, you do not have to worry about it during the semester. You can relax and try again next semester when life is possibly less hectic.
There are ways to lower your chances of having to drop classes in the future. When picking classes, be smart and do not overload yourself. Honestly ask yourself if you can handle the stress of seven classes.
Do your research on the class and professor you are taking. Rate My Professor is a great resource, providing your peers’ recommendations and experiences with professors and their classes. If you know the class will be difficult beforehand, then you will have the mindset to study. There should be no reason you have to drop the class.
Finally, do not make dropping the class an option in the first place. Go in with the mentality that you will pass with an A, and put forth your best effort to do so.