Seniors, Beware of Senioritis

Subha Ravichandran, Features writer

Paige Dresow

As seniors finish applying to colleges and eagerly await their decisions, the symptoms of senior slide may have slowly started appearing in even the most highly motivated students. Senior slide, or senioritis, is a phenomenon in which students’ grades drop in their final year. Even dedicated students can be susceptible to senior slide.

Many students in honors and AP classes don’t start their senior slide till May. After completing the dreaded AP exams, most classes no longer teach new material but give students fun projects to do instead. This causes students to ease off homework and put in less effort. If you’re a person who takes both AP and regular courses, you may see this slide translate into your regular courses as well.

Some other reasons students may suffer from senioritis include that they feel as if they no longer have a reason to maintain effort. After many seniors receive their college decisions they have less motivation to exert effort academically since they believe their futures are pretty much solidified. Many students instead attempt to leave a legacy that they can be remembered by even after they graduate. Seniors may try to enjoy precious moments with friends they may not see again or push themselves to excel in sports and extracurriculars. When students focus on other priorities, their grades may start to slip.

One thing to keep in mind is that colleges always have the right to rescind their acceptance. As rare as it may seem, it could be a possibility: According to Huffington Post, thousands of acceptances are rescinded each year. While it’s generally okay to drop from an A to a B average, a significant drop to a C or even D average can lead colleges to take action. Even if they don’t rescind acceptance they can still use other forms of discipline, such as withdrawing some amount of financial aid.

So how do students avoid falling to the perils and temptations of the senior slide? It’s pretty simple. If you feel like you have nothing to work towards anymore, set small goals and take a second look at the consequences. If you catch yourself sliding, reevaluate and try to improve your study habits. If the stress of maintaining all your effort for a couple more months gets to you, take some time for yourself and practice good stress management techniques. You’re going to need them in college anyway.

Remember that while it’s important to enjoy and relish the moments of being a senior, it’s better to read your textbooks than emails from colleges about your diagnosis of senioritis.