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  • Writer's pictureThe Next Step

I`m falling behind at university - what now?

Even though university courses are designed to be completed in a specific amount of semesters, students often come across hurdles when it comes to finishing on time.

It is completely normal to experience this - after all the rest of your life doesn`t just stop just because you`re also studying.

Sometimes the reason for falling behind is medical:

  • you sustain an injury or illness that keeps you away from studying for a long period of time,

  • struggle with your mental health and need a time out,

  • or need time away from school due to pregnancy.

But those reasons are far from the only ones:

  • Maybe your work schedule has suddenly been changed and you can`t make it to classes on time,

  • maybe you`re exhausted from balancing a full course load and supporting yourself financially,

  • maybe you got a great professional opportunity but it's in another town..

The possibilities are endless.

The main thing is that your university has ways of helping you cope with all of that!

😓 If you`re just struggling with a couple of classes/assignments it is worth talking to your professor personally to see if you can arrange another way for you to catch up - maybe you have to present a group project, but you`re commuting from another town? In that case your lecturer/professor might allow you to turn in an individual paper instead.

😖 If you can't manage to complete a class or two due to your schedule or workload it might also be possible to simply take them at another year - many universities let you choose which study year you take specific courses etc. You can talk to your professors and student counsellors about this.

😰 If you're battling an illness, need maternity/paternity leave, your or a family member is struggling, you`re doing an internship or have financial difficulties it might also be worth thinking about a leave of absence from university. Usually this leave is granted for 1 semester and allows you to catch up on life outside of university and catch up on your studies privately, before returning to studying.

Every university and every state does things a little differently, so it is always important to check your university policies regarding time off/rescheduling your courses etc. before committing to anything.

Keep communicating with your university, professors and fellow students to have up-to-date information about your options!

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