Why goal setting for students is important

Goal setting for students is important and cannot be under estimated.  Not only will this help with their academic success but also with their overall careers and in life.

Recently I was teaching this subject to a group of year 9-12 students and it was great to see the different goals they came up with for their studies as well as for activities outside of school.  Having a mixture of goals is also very healthy.

So what is goal setting?

Goals are visions, outcomes, objectives or expectations.  They can be both short and long term.  The process of goal setting helps a student choose where they want to go.

Another way of putting it is that a goal is an outcome, something that will make a difference as a result of achieving it.  It can’t be too ambitious or be out of reach and also not too simple that their is no challenge.  A goal has to be realistic with a stretch and requires a bit of effort and focus to achieve it. 

Why goal setting for students is important?Quote on why goal setting for students is important so they know where they are going

There are a variety of reasons why goal setting is important for students including:

  • helping to improve academic performance – get the grades they want or need
  • helping to keep motivated and focused
  • allowing one to feel good about themselves when they achieve their goals
  • enabling a student to be more confident.

SMART goal framework is a useful tool for goal setting

The SMART goal frameworks is a great framework for students to understand and allows them to ensure they not only have goals but a plan for achieving them.

S = specific – what you want to achieve?

M = measurable – you can see if you achieve it or not

A = attainable/achievable – with a specific time frame

R = realistic, relevant and results focused – it includes only those things that you can do and follow through with

T = timely and trackable – one needs to dedicate time to it

Key tips on goal setting for students

These are a few of the tips that I like to share with students:

  • Walt Disney quote - if you can dream it you can do itaim for progress not perfection
  • display the goals where they can be seen
  • review and adjust goals as needed
  • their are no failures when it comes to goals – we can all learn something so listen to feedback and don’t see it as failure
  • seek support to achieve your goals if needed
  • share your goals to give you some accountability

The next step is to see if your students have set goals for both study and life – remember balance is important too.

If you’d like some assistance with goal setting then please get in touch – [email protected]