Living on campus could raise GPA

By | September 03, 2008 | News (2)

Living on campus might increase your GPA.

The University of Georgia (UGA) has, in past years, tracked the GPAs of students living on and off campus. Its study has shown that the grades of those students who lived on campus were consistently higher than those who lived elsewhere. According to the research, there are many reasons this is the case, not only at UGA but all across the nation. Students who live closer to classes and the library do not have to worry about cooking or shopping for food.

Other students help form study habits

The most important factor, however, seems to be that living around other students motivates them to study more.

“We do have higher retention rates [students remaining in school] for students living on campus as well as a higher overall GPA,” said Erin Boele, director of housing at University Courtyard, the only on-campus living facility at Fresno State.

Justin Gandelman, a senior business management major, said the convenience of living on campus helped him get to his classes more often, making him a better student. Peer influences also played a role in Gandelman’s study habits.

“Everyone around me was studying, so I did too,” Gandelman said. “I also shared classes with the people I lived with, so we could study together.”

Aaron Encinias, who graduated last semester with a health science degree, lived in the dorms his freshman year and agreed that living on campus kept him focused.

“I was already living on campus, so it was easier for me to get to class,” Encinias said. “The quiet hours helped me study and I never had to worry about parking.”

Tyler Miller, assistant director of housing at University Courtyard, believes that resident advisors also have an important role in providing academic support to the residents.

By enforcing noise violations, providing support in time of need or simply advising students on what courses to avoid or how to best prepare for an exam, resident advisors are there to help students.

Academics becoming part of dorm life

Some schools try to implement their academic standards as much as possible by offering rewards or penalties to their students based on their grades. Some schools, for example, have GPA requirements for living on campus; others give discounts to those who earn good grades.

Fresno State seems to be moving in the same direction. Last year, for example, resident directors met with those students that had a GPA lower than 1.0 to help them find a solution; in the future, the goal is to meet with anyone who does not earn at least a 2.0.

Another example of University Courtyard’s efforts is the Academic Awards Dinner. Organized for the first time last year, this special event was launched to celebrate those students who are succeeding in academics. Every resident during the Fall 2007 semester that earned a 3.5 or higher was invited.

This year a living-learning community — the new big thing — will be organized at Fresno State for the first time. Students in the living-learning community will be taking two of the same general education classes each semester.

“This will be four classes where they can support one another. And when there is a test, the entire floor will know they all need to study, which will help,” Miller said.

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