Dear Abe,

I used to think that I’d be able to pass all of my subjects, but I now think I’m going to struggle. I don’t quite get the hang of doing online classes, and find it very difficult to concentrate. Being home alone all the time makes me feel pretty sad and lonely, and I’m finding it really difficult to stay motivated. How can I avoid failing any subjects?

Home Alone


Dear Home Alone,

The most important thing to address is how you are feeling. Go online to eHeadspace to talk online in a group forum, or book a one on one appointment with a counsellor to develop strategies to deal with how you are feeling.

Think about all of the subjects you are currently enrolled in, and figure out which ones you would be able to successfully complete. Remember that most people will overestimate their abilities. If you are on a Centrelink payment or have a study visa, find out the consequences, before you drop any subjects, from an SRC Caseworker.

Withdrawing from subjects now will give you a DF (discontinue fail) grade. However, if you need to withdraw from a subject due to illness or misadventure, you can apply for a late DC (discontinue not fail) grade. Check out the details here: http://srcusyd.net.au/src-help/academic-issues/discontinue-not-fail-dc/. You may be able to argue that it is reasonable for you to get a DC based on the unexpected shift from face-to-face to online delivery. Again, seek advice from an SRC Caseworker on what to include in your application.

Abe