10 Ways to Fail College

“Despite entering the labor force at a later age, workers with a bachelor’s degree on average earn well over $1 million more than high school graduates during their working lives, while those with an associate’s degree earn about $325,000 more” (Stinebrickner & Stinebrickner, 2014, p.4). As an individual who started with very little in life, earning a PhD made all the difference in my future. I also taught nursing students at the college level for over ten years. Therefore, I decided to write a post on 10 Ways to Fail College. A post on what NOT to do if you want to graduate!

Exceptions for College Drop-outs

There are always exceptions to the “norm.”

  • Bill Gates
  • Steve Jobs
  • Mark Zuckerberg
  • Tiger Woods

But statistically, the exceptions are a small percentage of people.

media credit: College Atlas

10 Ways to Fail College

  1. Don’t read the syllabus. It may give you all the information you need to pass the class. That’s too easy. The professor makes good money. Ask her/him ALL of your questions. Why should you have to work hard and prepare for class?
  2. Don’t make friends. They may want to study with you. Yikes! What if they remind you of a test or an assignment that is coming up or due? You don’t need to be bothered with these unnecessary messages. You have a social life to keep afloat. These messages would just clog your DM, inbox, or text messages. And what if they want to hang around you on the weekend? You don’t need more friends, right? Stay far away from mingling with your classmates. Oh, and what if they want to share notes? That would be silly. You don’t even take notes (see point 9). You email the professor!
  3. Email your professor 100 times a day. Your professor has nothing else to do. Nothing at all. He/She sits in front of the computer and waits for YOUR 100 messages. Shoot them away. He/She will LOVE you for it. Don’t refer to the syllabus, notes from class, or ask your friends. Oh, no. Go directly to the professor. Fire your emails away.
  4. Skip class. Sleeping and socialization are crucial. You don’t want to miss out on life. Stay up late and go out with your friends (just no new ones because you aren’t supposed to meet new friends, remember?). Sleep in. Class is useless. You can email your professor anyways, remember? Email her and ask her what she covered in class. You get 100 emails to her a day so use them. She will completely understand that you chose to stay out late and skip her class instead. She was waiting for your emails anyhow.
  5. Do not study. The professor loves to spoon feed you information. Drop by his office and ask him to tell you what is going to be on his test. He can’t wait to tell you. If he doesn’t give you every single question in person, email him. He will respond back right away. You don’t need to build on this information for future courses.
  6. Don’t use outside resources. There are resources like Quizlet, Grammarly, Turnitin, and Brainfuse that can help you with exams and writing stronger papers. Brainfuse is a resource your school may pay for where you can submit your papers via email or get access to a free tutor. All of these resources would require extra work from you. Why would you want to do that? Party. Stay up all night long. Email your professor or see him/her in person. Get spoon fed information. You’re on a role to learning nothing. Good job!
  7. Don’t use university resources. Your school should have a writing center, library, and tutoring clubs. Again, this requires more work from you. You are paying for an education. A degree should come easy. Don’t waste your time with extra help. You may learn more than you wanted to.
  8. Don’t read your textbook. You may find all of the answers to your exam questions. Some students have learned from osmosis. They never opened the textbook. Use it as a doorstop and pray the information will float to your brain.
  9. Don’t take notes. You have superhuman powers and can remember everything you hear. Why do you need to take notes? You can also email your professor and ask him to give you all of his notes. He will love you for that.
  10. Don’t fill out the study guide. You’re professor created a study guide because she was bored out of her mind and had nothing else to do. She already answered your 100 emails for the day. If you fill out the study guide from your notes and your textbook, you may learn everything that is needed for the next test. You may not need to email your teacher again. That stinks.


Attending college is a grind, but it can be crucial for earning potential, making connections, and knowledge. You get as much out of college as you put into it. You are responsible for gaining knowledge. Utilize every resource the school has to offer. You pay for it in miscellaneous tuition fees. Please don’t do the ten above things when you are in college, or you will fail! ❤️ I wish you the best in your college studies if you are in that position currently or getting ready for it. 📚

I have 10 more points coming up on Thursday! That will be it for now.

I would love any feedback or stories. Have a great day! ☀️

USC-College-Success-How-to -Fail-College
Hopefully, future college dudes!


Stinebrickner, R., & Stinebrickner, T. (2014). Academic performance and college dropout: Using longitudinal expectations data to estimate a learning model. Journal of Labor Economics, 32(3), 601-644.

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20 thoughts on “10 Ways to Fail College

  1. Wonderful points! I would add, make personal, face to face contact with your professor. It will benefit you because they will see you when they see your work. You’ll be more than just another number or name. There really is a strategy to it!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great advice and a nice piece. But I do think the current class of college grads are caught up in a very difficult situation with the job market. So many are in debt from student loans, working well below their interest or level of education, just to get by. I wonder if that rule of “return on investment” will apply to them ??? I hope things improve.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good point. I do believe that depends on the degree you get. Nurses start out with a descent pay but not every degree guarantees that. It also depends on what school you go to. In state should be cheaper. Thanks for the feedback. Again, great point.

      Liked by 1 person

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