How To

How To Set SMART Educational Goals

How To Set SMART Educational Goals-SMART goals are well planned goals which have a higher chance of success and it is an acronym for what your goals should involve and also how you should set your goals.

Setting SMART educational goals will increase your chances of performing well academically as a student as you will know what to do and how to do it. With SMART educational goals, you turn dreams and intentions into clear, measurable and concise objectives.

It is very important that you learn how to set SMART educational goals and also for you to be able to adjust these goals to get SMARTer as it will help you perform better in school and also in life generally.

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In this article, we are going to show you how you can set SMART educational goals and what your goals should entail for it to be considered as a SMART.

Table Of Content

  • What are SMART educational goals?
  • How to set SMART educational goals
  • Final note

Let’s proceed…

What Are SMART Educational Goals?

SMART educational goals are goals that are established using a specific set of criteria and evaluations to ensure that the objectives are attained within a time frame.

SMART is an acronym for (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant/Realistic and Timely). SMART educational goals has all these criteria to help you focus your efforts and resources and increases the chances of achieving your goals.

When setting SMART educational goals, you should know what you want to achieve, why you want to achieve the goals, if the goals are even achievable and the estimated time to achieve the goals.

Let’s look at the characteristics of SMART educational goals:

  • SMART educational goals are Specific

For you educational goals to be SMART and have an increased chance of being achieved, it must be clear and well defined. It is good to have big dreams and goals but you should do well not to make the goals ambiguous so as not to get confused or lose the motivation of working towards achieving the goals.

  • SMART educational goals are Measurable

Setting can be easy but do you have an indicator to show that you are on track and making progress with your goal. You have to be able to measure your progress, know when it has been achieved and completed.

  • SMART educational goals are Achievable

Like we mentioned earlier that it is good to dream big but you have to set goals that are not impossible to achieve. You shouldn’t build castles in the air in the name of setting SMART       goals.

There should be clear task or actions to take towards achieving your goals; you must have the resources and capability of achieving the goal you set.

  • SMART educational goals are Realistic

When we say realistic, we mean that the goals you set should be within your reach and be relevant to your life purpose. You must be able to know if the goal can be achieved within the time frame and with the resources available.

A realistic goal is one which you are committed to achieving.

  • SMART educational goals are Timely or Time bound

It is very important that your goals should have a deadline or timeframe so as to create purpose and urgency. The goal should have a starting date and also a target date for completion to help you focus on achieving the goal.

How To Set SMART Educational Goals

Making SMART educational goals as a student is very important for you to perform well in your academics and life in general. We are going to look at some ways you can set SMART educational goals as a student to improve your performance. They are:

  • You should look at what you really want

Why most people fail to achieve the goals they set is that they are not able to identify what they actually want for themselves. It is not about setting goals but what do you really want to achieve for yourself.

Deciding what you want for yourself is the first step in achieving your goal and in doing this; you have to be honest with yourself. You have to set a goal that is personally meaningful and based on your personal interest as this will motivate you towards working to achieve the goal.

  • Set goals around what you can achieve

For you to achieve what you have set as a goal, let what you desire or want be what you can achieve. We said that SMART educational goals are achievable and so you shouldn’t build castles in the air because you are trying to set a goal.

Channel your goals to your ability and potential as this will help you to chase your goals and also overcome setbacks you may encounter in the process of achieving your goals.

It is good to set big goals and think big but why think big when you don’t have the capacity to see it through. You will have to start from somewhere. See how you can break down the goals into bits if they are big so that you can follow them one after the other and not get caught up in the process.

  • Define your goal and be specific

SMART educational goals do not move you around in circles, what it does is to put you on a direct course of action and help you channel your energy towards achieving your set goals. So it is important to define your goal.

Be précised and understand what you are about to do and its importance. It is not about trying to achieve everything; it is about achieving one thing that will add value to both yourself and the society.

  • Be realistic

What is the reality of your goal? What do you stand to gain in achieving this goal? What exactly are you going to do to achieve your goal? If you want to be realistic about your goal, these are some questions to ask yourself.

You have to look at the things that you need to do in order to achieve your set goal. Highlight the mini-goals or sub-goals in achieving your main goal and also the steps or actions to take.

  • Set measurable goals

The ability for you to measure the progress of your goal, the more determined you become in achieving the set goal. Set measurable goals either by working with deadlines so as to avoid procrastination or divide your goals into smaller goals so that as you can complete them one after the other, you tend to assess how close you are to achieving your main goal.

Even when your goals might seem difficult to measure, try setting a yardstick with which you can assess your progress.

  • Set priorities

Arranging your goals according to how important they are will help you achieve your goals faster and also manage your time efficiently. Arranging your tasks according to their relative importance will help you concentrate better and finish the task given to you in time.

Trying to work on every area of your life at once without having a priority or focus will make you do everything and achieve nothing. So if you have many goals, it is advisable that you arrange them in a scale of preference dealing with the most pressing and relevant goal then move to the less pressing goals. This will help save your time.

  • Write your goals down

Writing your goals down and in details will help you understand the importance of achieving such goal. You should write out your goals, how you intend achieving your goals and also why you need to achieve the set goal. For every goal you set, there should be a deadline as this will help control laziness and procrastination.

After writing out your goals, you should do well to put it where you can always see it and get motivation. You can paste it on the wall of your room, door or window; somewhere you will always see it. It will help you keep in mind that you have something to achieve.

  • Identify possible challenges

You would be unrealistic if you say that everything will go smoothly even if you wish so. Mistakes are part of life and be sure to encounter challenges in your journey to achieving your goals. So it is better to also identify possible challenges and hindrances, spot them out as you are writing out your goals.

These challenges could be internal or external. When we say internal, we mean that the challenges could be as a result of your weaknesses, addictions or fear. The external challenges could be threats from around you; may be competition or some other disadvantages that can affect you. Also as you have identified the obstacles, still identify the possible solutions to overcoming those obstacles or roadblocks.

Final Note

SMART educational goals are very important to improve your academic performance. Setting goals can be challenging which might lead you to setting unrealistic goals but if you use the framework of the SMART goals which are (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely), you are going to set sound goals that will improve your personal and professional life.

We have highlighted some tips to help you in setting goals to ensure that your goals are SMART.

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