Are you an Academic Underestimater

How Learning Skills Affect Grades

Many learners earn grades below potential because they believe they already have all the learning skills they need. They also believe their academic performance is due to factors outside of themselves that they cannot control, therefore learning skills courses, workshops, books, or handouts are not relevant. Because of this attitude, many learners GREATLY UNDERESTIMATE THE IMPORTANCE OF LEARNING SKILLS in learning so badly that they never allow themselves to discover the way to earn better grades. This group composes a large portion of students who never graduate. To see how learning skills fit into the learning picture, examine the model below.

The term LEARNING SKILLS refers to the skills that are indispensable to learning.
The term SUBJECT MATTER refers to the material to be learned.
The term OUTCOME refers to the knowledge gained as a result of applying learning skills to a subject.
The term FEEDBACK refers to the grades that reflect how well learning skills work.

To change how much knowledge is learned and earn higher grades, learners must focus on refining the learning skills indispensable to getting knowledge and grades. If grades are not as desired, then learners must modify skills for learning. It is ONLY via learning skills that learners have control over knowledge and grades. Directing energy toward blaming something or someone else for poor grade performance is a waste of time.

Skill at learning exists in varying degrees in all learners. It is not something “you have or don't have.” There is hope for anyone who wishes to improve academic performance if focus is placed on refinement of the skills for learning. 

University of Central Florida 
Student Academic Resource Center