3 tips to help avoid ‘senioritis’

It’s that time of year for high school seniors when motivation can be nonexistent

Stock image. Photo by cottonbro (Pexels)

It’s a term that sounds like it’s some sort of physical sickness, but it’s a malaise that plagues the mind and one’s actions.

Do you know anyone who suffered from “senioritis” in high school?

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The term actually is listed in dictionaries, and it’s one that every parent of a high school senior will hear plenty from counselors, teachers and principals.

It’s defined in the Oxford dictionary as “a supposed affliction of students in their final year of high school or college, characterized by a decline or in motivation or performance.” Merriam-Webster says the term goes back to 1907.

Basically, seniors who already have their post-high school life sorted out, whether that means going to college, the military, a trade school or somewhere else, don’t feel it’s worthwhile to put forth maximum effort in their final days of high school.

But there is definite value in finishing strong, and even though senioritis can be more of a problem during the last semester of high school and not necessarily the start of a senior year, heeding these tips to avoiding senioritis will make the final year of high school as memorable as it should be, according to the website College Countdown.

1. Don’t risk anything.

This is more for those who plan on going to college after high school, but it can still apply to those who are doing something besides going to college.

Even though a senior might be admitted to a college or university, that institution can always strike back if a student starts slacking off. It’s not out of the realm of possibility for a college to take away any financial aid or withdraw an acceptance letter, should they see a serious drop in production, according to Best Value Schools. A potential employer can also have the same concerns and decide to hire someone else.

2. Keep up with good habits.

As the old saying goes, it’s hard to turn the switch on again once it’s off. Once good work habits that keep the mind going are broken, it’s hard to start them back up again, especially since there is still a summer vacation to deal with once the graduation ceremony is over.

Another motivation for having the foot on the gas academically is that it can help earn college credits before college even starts or lead to better placement in college courses, which leads to an earlier graduation from college, which can mean a little less money spent on tuition.

3. Create self-competition and goals.

Even though acceptance into a college, trade school or military has been accomplished, there’s still more that can be achieved in the final months of high school. Want to be a valedictorian or salutatorian? If that’s not attainable, is there a certain grade-point average you want to finish high school with and forever have on your transcripts? Is there a certain GPA that needs to be attained to secure scholarships? None of that is possible if you succumb to senioritis.

Have any other tips to avoid senioritis? Let us know in the comments below.

This story was first published in 2021. It has since been updated.

About the Author

Keith is a member of Graham Media Group's Digital Content Team, which produces content for all the company's news websites.

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