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Senioritis setting in at NIU

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Posted: Monday, November 19, 2012 8:47 pm

The motivation for college students to succeed academically may decrease as they arrive closer to their graduation date.

The phenomenon is known as senioritis. According to Merriam-Webster.com, senioritis is “an ebbing of motivation and effort by school seniors as evidenced by tardiness, absences and lower grades.” Amanda Durik, associate professor of psychology, said her research on senioritis suggests once someone is closer to reaching their goal, they increase their efforts to complete that goal.

“However, most of the research is short term and not long term four-year goals,” Durik said.

Senior psychology major Tasheena Williams said she suffers from senioritis and just wants to be done with school. Williams said she finds herself arriving to class later and later all the time. Sometimes she even skips class, she said.

“I feel like I am lazy when it comes to school,” Williams said. “I am suffering from senioritis because I just want to be done and I do not have the motivation to finish.”

According to College Board, every year colleges put students on academic probation or alter financial aid packages as a result of senioritis. There are several ways college seniors can get active, excited and focused in their school work, according to College Board. Students should maintain a challenging course load, enjoy their last year in college responsibly, try an internship, keep a schedule of their activities and deadlines.

Samantha Shackleton, senior communicative disorders major, said the completion of school seems to be taking a lot longer than usual. Shackleton said once students reach a certain point in their educational career, they start to give up.

“Seniors are taking five years to complete schooling at universities and colleges instead of the normal four years,” Shackleton said. “It can get frustrating because no end is in sight.”

Senioritis can affect grades because people suffering from it only care to do the bare minimum course load to pass the class, she said. Shackleton said for her, motivation is hard to keep.

Senior psychology major Elizabeth Balvaneda said senioritis hits her hard at times.

“I feel it started my junior year and this year it got a little better,” Balvaneda said. “When I was going to school at Triton Community College, I felt like I was more on task with homework and school in general. I also never missed class and now I’ve missed at least one class in all of my courses.”

Balvaneda said she feels this way because of the anticipation of graduation. Laziness has kicked in her for because of graduation approaching, she said.

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