How to Avoid Senioritis and Maintain Your GPA Before College

Test Prep & Grades
January 27, 2020
Senioritis Hits Us When We Least Expect It…

What is senioritis? This mythical affliction seems to hit a vast majority of students sometime around the time they submit their last college applications. Signs include homework left untouched, the desire to “coast to the finish line”, and the call of beautiful spring weather distracting you from your studies.

Thankfully, you can prepare to avoid senioritis beforehand. By committing to making the most of your entire senior year, you can not only make the transition from highschool to college not only smoother, but also prepare yourself for your college future.

What You’ll Find In This Article

Why Your Grades Still Matter After Submitting College Applications

It’s normal to feel like a huge weight has been taken off your shoulder once you finally submit your last college application. College application season is a stressful period for most of us, and it can be tempting to coast through the rest of senior year once it’s over. After all, haven’t you earned a little break before you head off to college?

While it’s essential to take time to relax and reward yourself for your hard work on your college applications, you can’t let yourself lose sight of the ultimate goal: preparing for your future. Your grades and test scores after you’ve submitted your college application are still very important for several reasons.

  1. Many colleges will ask applicants to submit a mid-year report or transcript once they become available in the spring.
  2. One of the best traits to show off as a college applicant is consistency. You don’t want to give off the impression that you’ll coast through college once you’ve been accepted.
  3. Studying, and learning in general, is a skill that requires practice. If you fall out of the habit of learning due to senioritis, your freshman year of college will be more difficult than it needs to be.

Thankfully, it’s possible to strike a balance between taking your last few months of high school easy and maintaining your grades. While anyone can fall victim to senioritis, it is possible to cure with careful planning and support.

The Consequences Of Senoritis

Colleges take your commitment to your education and future seriously. In many acceptance letters, the admissions office will make a point to state that you’re expected to maintain the same academic and extracurricular performance as you presented on your application. While a slight decline in your grades may not be noticed, if your transcript comes back with several C’s and D’s instead of the straight A’s you had when you submitted your application, you may have to face the consequences of senioritis.

Admissions officials can and will send warning letters about poor performance and, in extreme cases, your admission offer may be rescinded.

Every college will have a different process for how they handle students whose grades fall in the last semester of their senior year. Some schools may allow students the chance to explain their poor performance. Other schools and extreme situations may result in a student getting no chance to explain at all before they’re suddenly scrambling to find another college to apply to.

How To Avoid Senoritis And Maintain Your GPA

Preparing for senioritis, even if you think it won’t be a problem for you, can help make the last half of your senior year much easier. Because your senior year will be so busy, being prepared to raise and maintain your GPA is essential. If you’re not prepared, you may not notice your grades are falling in time to do anything about it. Thankfully, it’s not hard to avoid senioritis!


Open up your favorite note-taking app or grab a piece of paper, because writing down your goals for the last few months of high school can help you beat senioritis. You only have a few months left, so there’s no need to set major or life-changing goals. The best final semester goals are those that give you something you can work toward and feel a sense of accomplishment from once you’re done.

Example goals include maintaining a certain GPA, leading a study group, training your student council replacement, reading a certain number of non-fiction books, or finding a volunteer opportunity.


Senior year can get crazy busy, and when it finally starts to die down the last thing you’ll want to do is be a “responsible adult.”

Still, you should keep in mind that once you’re off to college, you’ll be in a new and exciting place where you’re expected to be a responsible adult. If you can get a headstart on taking care of yourself with good habits while you’re still at home, surrounded by your support group, it can make the transition to college much easier.

Go to sleep at a reasonable hour. Go outside and take a walk. Choose a homemade meal over fast food. Choose homework over binging The Witcher. It sounds awfully unexciting, but you’ll thank yourself for it when you start college with a solid “responsible adult” foundation.


Once you’ve gotten a handle on being a responsible adult, you can take advantage of the time you have left in your senior year to train yourself for college. If you can convince a few friends to join you in your endeavor, it can become a great way to say farewell to highschool together.

Think about everything you know about what it takes to succeed in college, and see where you can improve yourself with good habits. Never attended a study group in your life? Start one and commit to it just as you would an afternoon with your sweatpants and favorite YouTube channel. Have no idea how to manage your free time to get your studying and homework done? Start making awesome calendars now and daydream about the one you’ll put up in your dorm room.


If you’re still struggling to finish your homework before it’s due, you can always fall back on the age-old tactic of scaring yourself to snap out of it.

One of the easiest ways to scare yourself is by making a copy of your acceptance letter and hanging it somewhere you’ll see it every day. Highlight the sentence where your college politely tells you “if you don’t keep your grades up, we reserve the right to rescind this acceptance.”

If that fails, try leaving yourself sternly-worded notes throughout the house. Google “rescinded from college stories.” Whatever it takes to remind yourself of the consequences of slacking off, do it as often as necessary to motivate yourself.

Note: This is not an encouragement to obsess over your application being rescinded because your grades are on a slight decline. Colleges understand that we’re all human. In all but the most extreme circumstances, students facing a rescinded acceptance will be given a chance to explain their performance well before the college makes a final decision.


Sometimes, we don’t understand why we’re struggling with something. No matter how much we ask ourselves, we can’t even explain the problem, let alone solve it. Senioritisis often feels like this for many students; in a period where we should feel energized and excited about the future, it makes absolutely no sense for our brains to switch on autopilot.

Thankfully, an outside perspective can often help us pinpoint these vague problems. For some students, it may be fear of the unknown causing their senioritis. Other students may be confused about their next step. Yet others may benefit from a challenge to spark their motivation.

We’re all different, and senioritis especially affects us all differently. Reach out to those who know you best, including your teachers and your counselors, to ask for advice on how you can beat your senioritis.

Your Senior Year Of High School Should Be Energizing!

As you can see, there are consequences to senioritis that can have a real effect on your future.

While it’s rare for colleges to rescind an application, it can happen to even the best of us if senioritis takes over. This is why it’s essential that you plan around the temptation to slack off in your senior year.

When you’re well prepared for the senioritis, you can motivate yourself even when everyone else is counting down the days until graduation. Your senior year is the last chance to prepare yourself for the transition to college, and every day can help you learn important lessons and prepare yourself with good habits.

Of course, senioritis likes to appear when we least expect it. If you’re struggling to motivate yourself through college application season and beyond, reach out to our college counselors. We’ve been in your shoes before, and we’re determined to help every student we can prepare themselves for college while still having a fantastic senior year!

Shake Off Senioritis By Remembering What Your Education Is All About: Your Future.



Need more Information?

Gain all the information you need by getting in touch with our admissions team or booking a free 30-minute counseling session.