Failing Univeristy

So I’m in my third year of university and taking my first language class, first year Spanish. I love the language and was super excited to learn how to speak, read and write it. However, after failing all three of my unit tests (44%, 35%, and 25%) I honestly feel like I will never be able to learn it. I need 6 course credits to get my English degree. I’m past the point where I can drop the class, plus if I did I would lose my funding. The course is over half over, but I seriously doubt I’m going to pass.

I’m literally putting all my time and effort into this one Spanish class, which in turn, means I’m failing my other three classes.

Do y’all have any ideas, tips, anything to possibly help? Thanks

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I’m a native Spanish speaker. Just tell me which are the topics you struggle more with and I will be more than glad to help you.

Thank you so much, for me it’s pretty much everything but especially the grammar and writing it. I always want to put too many words, or the wrong words in. For example “no, yo no hablo el español”

Hey, I’m Hannah, I’m new here!
I’m not doing too well in college right now either, and I may or may not have joined this forum as a means of procrastinating… oops

Learning a new language is super difficult and overwhelming, especially with how they’re being taught in schools these days. I’ve been taking Spanish for about 6 years now and I still struggle with it.

What I’ve found that helps me the most is watching TV shows and movies in Spanish. I know this won’t immediately help you to learn enough to get ahead in your class, but it is super helpful in getting more comfortable with the language, how words are pronounced, etc. It’ll also make it easier to learn grammar stuff when those topics come up in class because you’ll recognize the sentence structures or verb forms. When kids learn to speak their native languages growing up, they don’t study vocab flash cards or verb charts, they learn from exposure, which is the most effective way to go about it. It’s easier to start with kid’s shows or movies you’ve already seen dubbed in Spanish. Watch an episode or a scene through a few times and see what you can recognize.

Also, what I struggle with the most in Spanish is perfectionism when it comes to speaking or writing. I feel like I just can’t speak or write a sentence until I’m 100% sure it’s all correct. It’s hard but just practice going for it before you’re sure. Practice by yourself, maybe narrate your daily routine to yourself in Spanish while you’re getting ready and don’t worry if it’s perfect. If you’re comfortable meeting with your professor during their office hours if they offer them that might help to practice speaking and getting automatic feedback without the pressure of messing up in front of your entire class.

Good luck!


Thanks cardh I’ll try that

I struggled a lot at university too. But something that helped me was to turn studying into an actual, practical task. I studied computer science, so I’m not sure how that approach might work for you in languages. But off the top of my head, what I would suggest is to try something like translating a poem or speech or something you like from English to Spanish or from Spanish to English. Then, when you get stuck on something, look it up, figure it out, and keep going. This is the closest thing I could think of to what I did with programming. I couldn’t study worth a damn, so I’d just write small programs using the stuff that I’m supposed to learn.

I think it worked for me because it’s easier for me to work on small, manageable tasks. Also, it feels far more rewarding to complete something, even if it is small, than to attempt studying seemingly endless course materials without getting anywhere.

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Just in response to your first sentence me too dude XD I have a presentation on tomorrow afternoon which my group literally decided to say in person “every man for himself!” so there’s that. For Spanish generally, I agree that when it comes to learning the language, the best way to do so is to practice it outside of the classroom and immerse yourself in the culture and other Spanish speakers. It forces you to adapt and therefore speak the language more frequently, learning it much faster and more easily.

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Hey, dude!
Recently graduated brain here! I just finished a 4-year degree program last spring and it was unholy hell most days of the week. I spent a lot of time nearly failing stuff, on probation, or explaining to my teachers why I only had half an assignment completed. Possibly talk to your prof about accomodations, retakes, or just see if you can bring them a muffin and have an honest chat about your struggs and concerns. The most helpful thing for me to remeber when I was in your shoes is that your teachers, your advisors, mentors, and admin: they’re on your side. Odds are high that they’re in an academic profession becaue they want to help people learn and succeed!! If you can express to them your genuine enthusiasm for wanting to learn and make an effort, that will shine through. Remeber that in university especially, it’s more about learning than grades. People believe in you and want to help you grow as a person. Just reach out and let them. You can totally do this!!

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I also have a friend studying French who finds it helpful to change all of her technology defaults to French so that she’s forced to practice reading in the language any time she’s procrastinating on social media! It’s forced emersion, but it means you’re learning even when you’re trying to avoid learning :wink:

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I was the same too when learning English. I overdid sentences by putting way too much unnecessary stuff. A way to cut that out is to watch Spanish T.V. shows or movies, reading magazines or books in spanish can also help. That way you make it interesting enough for your brain yo actually absorb the knowledge.

Hi reading your post made me think of my old Roman Law lecturer. He thought the class for 47 years and was one of only a few people who could translate latin to Afrkiaans. He once asked the class do you all think Latin was easy to study for me? His response was the first year I only got 14% for the subject. Everyone was shocked.

So what I am trying to say is get a tutor and make friends that would learn you the language. Try making it fun to learn. I love languages myself but I spell phonetically hence I got penalized a lot at school so I can understand your frustration, I wish you all the best and remember

I’ve tried getting a tutor there is literally NONE I can find either at school or elsewhere

As a former teacher. They aren’t in it for the money (because there isn’t much). And like @Mia_Benson177 Said, they are probably on your side! @Mia_Benson177 Was SOOOO right when she said that a muffin and an honest chat about struggs (Stealing that word fyi) will go a long way. IDK your prof, but honesty and vulnerability a la Brene Brown is so disarming even if your prof is jaded.

Hope this helps!

I just finished writing this and realized its an older post… I almost deleted it but now I want to know what happened!!! Hope all went well!

The professor ended up admitting to my face that she’s withholding my accommodations from me (which she signed off on). So I ended up talking with the department head and filing a Human Rights complaint. I found out later the class average was something like 40%

I would start with an academic advisor, and then other campus resources. Sometimes the counseling center or office for students with disabilities can also be helpful. I was in a bad situation myself in undergrad and after talking with my advisor I learned I had options I hadn’t even known. Usually things can be salvaged, but you may have to jump through hoops to make it happen.