Drifting Along – The Able Student

Perhaps you are a very good student, reading this book to pick up any chance ideas that will help. You may be the type who suffers a let-down in some college classes because the work is beamed at the average. It may bore you. But, like many fine students, you may wrongly adopt the idea that because “grades are grades,” you can relax and drift along. You feel sure of the A.

But is drifting along really the smart thing to do? Would you think much of a track star – a high-jumper, say – if he drifted along because there were no real challengers in sight? What of the competition you face later, the unknown men and women who happen to be elsewhere in challenging situations? They are working like beavers because their competitors are in plain view. Someday you may run up against one of them, and find, like the easy-going high-jumper, that you should have been practicing … hard.

What can you do, if you feel under-challenged? Several obvious things: Explain your wishes to the professor and ask for a special program. Possibly outside reading can be suggested, or a report can take the place of an exam. Some professors encourage top students by having them prepare a 15- or 20-minute portion of a lecture.

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