VIU Advising Team walking on campus

Tips for Academic Success


Let's reframe the idea of failure...The F Word student video

1. Ensure you are in the right program for you

Starting in a program does not mean that you must complete it if it is not the right fit for you and your present or your future. Is it time to complete a Career Matchmaker assessment? When did you last try one? Don't delay in talking to someone about what your options are if you have any questions or doubts. You may find that you have more options than you think. 

2. Carefully Choose a Course Load 

Course load is a very personal decision.

Know the Last Day to Drop a Course for 100% refund of fees date each semester and adjust your course load within two weeks of the start of the semester.


  • funding requirements
  • length of time to complete credential
  • work, family and other commitments in life
  • what you know about yourself as a student
  • what is best for your health and well-being

3. Choose support

4. Connect with people, opportunities and information.

4. Learn - Recommended Resources:




If you are starting the year on Academic Concern:

  • Recognize that even though you may have had a tough semester or two there are some little victories you have experienced.  What were the factors that led you to this point?  What good skills or strategies can you keep?  What needs to change in life or in your student life?  What are the things that you can control?  What are the things you can’t control?
  • Relax into your next steps moving forward.  Deep breaths.  What are your relaxation and stress reduction strategies?  Don't have any?  Try out some options as these skills will help you as a student.
  • Review the year that did not end with the minimum GPA.  What went well?  What was positive?  What things need to change?  Gather all the info you need so you can make the best decisions for you!
  • Release.   It's time to let go of the past.  We can’t change it but we can move forward from today with a positive mindset.
  • Regroup.   What are some strategies that can help you be successful moving forward.  Do you have your team in place?  Do you have a plan in place?  Classes, numbers, how will you deal with adversity as you move forward.  Program fit? Do you want to go to school?  Determine what you want to do when you are done with school.  Establish your wish list of all the academic, life & personal criteria you want from school and rate them from most to least important. 
  • Refocus. Remember your why.  Why are you doing this?  How can you break down your year into smaller goals?  Plan your work and work your Plan.
  • Ready.   You are now ready and excited for the next chapter.  Time to move forward with a positive, 'can do' attitude.