Goal setting is a plan that guides a person and, in this case, a student towards a goal.
A well-set goal helps the students to know what they want to achieve, his failures and re-evaluate his/her path and improves academic performance. The goals set should be defined clearly, how much time the student is willing to spend, realistic and attainable.
10 Tips for Setting Successful Goals With Students
Check out these 10 awesome tips for setting successful goals with students:
1) Plan Strategically
Planning goes beyond simply jotting down, “I want to get an A in English”.
Planning strategically and tactically means including the big picture of the plan. Then the big picture is divided into smaller achievable and doable increments that map out a way to accomplishing the plan. For instance, to get an A, there are strategies that come into play.
Steps such as preparing a reading timetable and allocating the tougher subjects more time, attending tuition and tutorials, among others must be included in the plan before the big picture is accomplished. Students should plan strategically with a great picture in mind.
Big goals that are set strategically and tactically helps students to stretch beyond and reach heights they never imagined. Apart from the planning strategically, they should act in a tactical way to break that big picture into an achievable smaller one.
2) Recognize When Help is Needed
Suggestions from others are important in achieving successful goals. Where a student experiences difficulties in school work, he/she should ask for help from tutors, friends or other students who are good in that subject. Rigidness on the part of the students deters growth.
Some goals cannot be achieved individually; the student needs others for group discussions to know where they have been going wrong and how to improve as well as other programs that may render help.
3) Stop and Re-assess
It is important for the student to track progress and get an idea if he/she is going the right way. Circumstances can change that might prevent achievement in the set time frame the student had in mind. Once in a while reassessment of action plans should be done.
If changes have occurred that affect the action plans, then they are adjusted to fit the present conditions. This ensures the student’s goals are always up to date.
4) Plans Should be Regularly Reviewed
Reviewing the action plans helps the student to know whether he/she is doing what is stipulated in the plan. The goals should be checked to see whether they relate to career goals and priorities. Goals should be written where they can be seen to enable the student to reflect on them.
At times, students are vibrant while making plans but after a few days they forget as it is to human nature. Therefore, keeping the plans in a visible place is easier to maintain consistency as they are frequently reminded.
5) Use Verb-Noun Structure
Goals must drive the student to actions and not just a list they feel needs to be implemented. If the goal is to attend every class or finish homework, then this needs to be acted upon. Use of action verbs gives the student a drive to act, whatsoever the situation.
For this reason, action verbs must be used at the beginning of a sentence while making goals to achieve the fore mentioned drive. For instance, “Finish homework each day” shows the determination and motivation to do nothing less of finishing.
Goals should focus on action to be taken in specific classes. For instance, when a teacher returns papers to students after marking, there are comments that are made based on areas of improvement, such as: “provide evidence as a support of a certain claim”, “proofread your work before handing it in”.
The same should apply to students by taking similar action and setting specific goals so as to improve on different subjects.
6) A Timeline Needs to Be Set for Every Goal
A goal could be short-term, long-term or as simple as a student making a decision that ‘I will not allow anyone to do custom essays for me’. Goals can be long-term or short-term while others can be ongoing. Important goals should be timed and synchronized with calendars for best results.
Rather than talking about what you need in future, a timed goal gives clarity of when it needs to be achieved. Also, a timeline prevents postponing and gives a student healthy pressure to accomplish the goal.
7) Identifying the Obstacles that Lie Ahead
To every obstacle, the student should come up with action plans on how to eliminate the obstacles. Just like in the business world where the entrepreneur tries to come up with alternatives, the student should be in a position of drafting solutions.
A student must recognize that the journey to success must have obstacles in it. If they identify the obstacle, consequently, there is a need to dig deeper to determine the cause. For example, if a student wants a B after getting Ds severally, and they identify the underlying obstacle has been not completing assignments.
It is wise to ask the reasons that could cause the student not to complete the homework. Is it due to many responsibilities at home or distraction from a boyfriend or girlfriend or waste of time on social media? After the cause is identified, strategies can be laid to surmount the hurdles and achieve success.
8) Involve parents and families
A cooperative union between students and parents should exist. Parents can restore hope and boost the morale of their children. An action plan that favors the student can be identified when both work together. A plan also offsets any negative feelings that may be caused by parents or teachers.
For instance, with a plan a D student can share his/her plan to the teachers and parents on how she has strategized to achieve a B. Such a plan gives hope to the teachers and parents and when the student sees the parents believe in the plan, more efforts are put to make them proud of achieving the set goals.
9) Progress Not Perfection.
Students should be progress oriented rather than trying to be perfect. It will allow them to maintain the paradigm of what needs to be achieved. The student should celebrate where steps have been taken. Most of the time, success comes gradually; therefore it is important for a student to see progress in their work as it gives hope that finally they will get there.
10) Have fun
Not only should the student set academic goals, he/she should also set goals that are meant for relaxation and having fun. Every achieved goal should be rewarded.
Thanks for checking this article out on tips to help with setting successful goals for students. To recap on the list:
- Plan strategically
- Recognize when help is needed
- Stop and re-assess
- Plans should be regularly reviewed
- Use verb-noun structure
- A time-line needs to be set for every goal
- Identifying the obstacles that lie ahead
- Involve parents and families
- Progress not perfection
- Have fun
What are your favorite tips from this article? Leave a comment below.