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Qualities of a Successful Student

written by: Natasha Stiller • edited by: Wendy Finn • updated: 9/11/2012

Success in students is often measured by their grades, achievements in school and behavior. I believe there is so much more to achieving success as a student...

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    Qualities of Success

    People measure success by a variety of tangible and intangible things. Educators do the same. Success in school is often measured by grades, behavior, and attendance. These are the awards provided for students at the end of every semester, in hopes of motivating them to continue to perform the same.

    What comes to mind for me in education and students within a classroom, in my own experience and that of my children include:

    A willingness to learn. I believe it’s important for students to have a willingness to learn. They can then take information that is being taught and apply it in ways that are meaningful to them, as well as expand upon the information to make it fit into their interests and surroundings. A love of learning is extremely valuable as a student and I believe willingness comes first. Learning in itself is far more important than a score on a test of information that might never be seen again. If the information was truly absorbed and can be applied, this is a true testament to learning.

    Mindfulness and social awareness are great attributes of a successful student. If a person is mindful of their surroundings and approaches situations with social awareness, acceptance, and can fit into their surroundings; the student will be successful at making friends, and working in groups of people. At any age, a person will need to work alongside others, specifically in the “real world".

    Preparation. A successful student is prepared, organized, and has a positive attitude. They are ready to learn new material or skills. They have a positive attitude about the process, even when it might be challenging or more difficult. They are not afraid to try something new or attempt a different strategy because of their mindset and by the nature that they are prepared for what comes their way.

    Time Manager, able to set priorities. A successful student understands what assignments need to come first, and able to prioritize these fitting into their schedule and life. I believe this happens at a very young age, a student understands that they need to spend a specific amount of time on homework or projects to complete them to their standard.

    Critical thinking is essential. A successful student needs to be able to pose questions and work towards finding the answers to information that they are learning, or items that they are interested in. I believe this goes hand in hand with having a love of learning. Once you’re curious about something, you should want to find the answer, just for the thrill of knowing it. Critical thinkers work often outside the box. They are able to find answers in a different fashion than their peers, or they are constantly asking new questions seeking out new information.

    There are surely other attributes that helps explain what makes a successful student, however these are the top of my list of what makes a successful student. I believe students that have these skills and qualities walk away with far more than a grade or a piece of paper awarding them for hard work.