Why do Intelligent College Students Fail?

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Why do Intelligent College Students Fail?

Have you ever wondered why intelligent college students fail in their academic work?

It is the desire of all students that join college to pass. No single student would be admitted to a college before passing the high school level. However, there are many students that fail in college despite scoring good grades in high school.

There are also many students that have very good IQs but continually fail to record academic results that match their potential. It, therefore, means that good IQ is important for one to pass exams but it is not the only thing that is required for excellence in academics.

The article explores some of the other factors that contribute to the failure of intelligent students.

Six Reasons Why College Students Fail in their Exams

The college students who fail in their academic work fail because of one or more of the following reasons.

1. College Students Fail Due to Lack of Hard work

Hard work is a key catalyst for success in life. Hard work is the ingredient that turns talents to results.

Many bright students fail to put in extra hours of study because they assume that good IQ is all that is required for success.

college students fail exams because of laziness

Others assume that passing the high school examinations is a guarantee for success in life. Every college student should put in a lot of effort in school if success in the examinations is to be guaranteed.

Failure to go the extra mile leads to complacency which results to results that are not desirable.

Bright students should not assume that a pass in examinations will be guaranteed without effort. College students need to put in many hours of reading and research.


2. College Students have Dependency Syndrome

Many students tend not to believe in themselves and end up depending on others. Some depend on lecturers too much. The lecturers are there to offer guidance but should not be consulted too much.

college students fail exams dependency syndrome

Some other students tend to believe so much in their colleagues. Classroom discussions are vital and discussions with the study group members are also essential but should not be over-relied on.

There is a need for personal input and contribution if at all success in the examinations is to be guaranteed.


3. Some College Students are Overconfident

Many intelligent students tend to have overconfidence.

Confidence is good because it boosts the ability of a student to tackle difficult challenges.

However, many bright students tend to take too much risk leaving no room for caution that prepares one for the worst.

college students fail exams because of overconfidence

When an intelligent student becomes overconfident, there is a tendency to take difficult options which may not favor one’s interest. There is also the probability of not preparing enough for examinations and assignments.


4. College Students Fail Due to Lack of Resilience

Resilience is the attribute that allows students to face hardships and emerge as winners. Challenges are a part of life and intelligent students are not exempted.

Intelligent students need to know that they are worthy and can overcome challenges as long as they remained focused on their goals and dreams. Lack of resilience is one of the leading causes of failure in college according to Psychology Today.

students fail because they lack resilience

The failure to focus on the bigger goals and dreams can be a major reason why intelligent students fail in college. Challenges should not weigh a bright student down but it should be an added reason as to why they should work hard to get the full benefits of their talent.

Resilience allows students to have problem-solving skills which when transferred to the academic field, allows students to excel in the academics arena.

An intelligent student should have a sense of purpose and should be optimized to be able to deal with the pressure that comes with academics.

Intelligent students need to earn to solve small challenges so that good grades in the examinations can be assured.

Intelligent students should engage in physical activities to build resilience muscles. Physical activities help students face challenges that stretch the body muscles hence increase the ability to perform.


5. College Students Fail because of Lack of Self Drive

Self-drive is important for all college students because it determines the levels of self-motivation. Self-drive is the element that pushes a student to go the extra mile and beat the odds.

An intelligent student who lacks self-drive may fail in college because there is no initiative college students fail because they lack self-motivationto study and research beyond what the instructor gives in class. Lack of self-drive also leads to complacency.


All college students regardless of the intellectual abilities should be self-driven. Self-drive is the essential factor that determines motivation and hence affects the performance of a learner.

A student who scored good grades in high school should not just rely on that performance but should go the extra mile of reading more because college studies are more self-paced, unlike the high school studies that rely on instruction from a teacher.

Intelligent students that lack self-drive also struggle with maintaining focus. Lack of focus is one of the leading reasons why bright students fail in college.

The ability to say no to activities that take away attention from studies is what helps a student maintain focus and generate high levels of self-drive.


6. College Students Have Poor Time Management Skills

Time management is an important skill that can influence the performance of a student. There are many things that need the attention of a college student.

There is the need to attend classes, some college students do work part-time, some other students have families.

clever college students fail because of poor time management

In addition, there is the extra time that is required for entertainment and recreation. Failure to manage time well can lead to the failure of an otherwise intelligent student.

In order to be effective in time management,  a student should have a time table that is followed strictly.

In addition, there is a need to delegate some tasks or outsource some services. An attempt to do all jobs that need attention can lead to fatigue and hence failure in the academics.

Some of the tasks that can be delegated include assignments and essays.

An intelligent student can do the research and leave the work of editing to research assistants who can help polish up the paper.

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There is a life after college so let us handle the research as you prepare for the examinations.


Final Thoughts

Intellectual ability is essential for good academic performance. However, intellectual ability is not enough to guarantee sterling performance.

Bright students may end up failing in college if there is no hard work if there is too much dependence on others, overconfidence, lack of resilience, lack of self-drive and poor time management.

All college students need to take care of these pitfalls so that a pass in the academics can be guaranteed.

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