16 Ways to Help Learners That Are Failing Academically

Are you looking for ways to help students that are failing academically? If so, keep reading.

1. Give parents information on test or quiz content (e.g., what content will be covered by the test or quiz, format, types of questions, etc.).

2. Alter instructions to include more concrete examples to enable learning.

3. Observe student performance to detect errors and determine where learning problems exist.

4. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Learners who compete academically and fail may cease to try to succeed and do far less than they are capable of achieving.

5. Give tests and exams to the student when they are more likely to succeed (e.g., after determining that the student has learned the information).

6. Make sure the student has mastery of skills at each level before testing a concept.

7. Praise those students who demonstrate improved test or quiz scores. (It may be best to reinforce privately rather than publicly.)

8. Make sure that all instructions, questions, and explanations are delivered in a clear, concise manner and at an appropriate rate for the student.

9. Find the student’s most efficient learning mode. Utilize it when giving tests or exams to enable the student’s comprehension.

10. Assess the appropriateness of the task to ascertain (a) if the task is too easy, (b) if the task is too complicated, and (c) if the duration of time scheduled for the task is sufficient.

11. Connect with the parents (e.g., notes home, phone calls, etc.) to disseminate information about the student’s progress. The parents may reinforce the student at home for improved test or quiz scores.

12. Draft an agreement with the student stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., improved test or quiz scores) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

13. Give the student increased chances for help or assistance on academic tasks (e.g., peer tutoring, instructions for work sent home, frequent interactions, etc.).

14. Create classroom rules: • Complete every assignment. • Complete assignments quietly. • Remain in your seat. • Finish tasks. • Meet task expectations. Examine rules often. Praise students for following the rules.

15. Talk with the student to explain (a) what the student is doing wrong (e.g., not attending during class, not using study time, etc.) and (b) what the student should be doing (e.g., paying attention during class, asking questions, using study time, etc.).

16. Praise improved test or quiz scores: (a) give the student a concrete reward (e.g., privileges such as leading the line, handing out learning materials, 10 minutes of free time, etc.) or (b) give the student an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

16. Consider using one of the apps and tools from our many app lists. These apps are designed to help students who are experiencing academic difficulties.

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