Last year, you started looking at opportunities and exploring different interests. Now it’s time to develop your strengths and skills.

Your checklist



You’re not a stranger to class exams, pop quizzes, or standardized tests. Coursework is getting harder, though, and your teachers are testing you in different ways from middle school and 9th grade. You’re expected to keep up with weekly reading and study on your own. It’s up to you to take charge when you don’t understand something. Meet with your teacher when you need help and assemble peer study groups outside of the classroom. Your grades are important and your study habits will help you succeed.



You’ve grown accustomed to adults and teachers telling you what to do and when to do it. But as a sophomore (and every year in the future), you’re responsible for managing your own workload and keeping track of test dates and deadlines. With this newfound independence, it’s easy to start procrastinating. Our advice? Make a daily and weekly to-do list to avoid night-before cramming and unnecessary stress. After all, college requires balancing your time. The better you are at time management now, the better prepared you’ll be in the future.



It’s important to choose courses that both interest and challenge you. You shouldn’t just choose courses that will help you get into college. If you think you’re ready to take on more rigorous coursework, talk to your school counselor or teachers about advanced options. This will ensure you stay on the right academic path.



College entrance exams - like the ACT and SAT - have critical reading sections that will test your ability to retain and understand written English. What’s the best way to sharpen these skills? Read as much as you can. It’s the best way to expand your vocabulary and increase how quickly and accurately you absorb information. That will benefit you at testing time, guaranteed.