More Friends = Better Grades

Popularity pays off!

I really miss the days of screaming down the stairs, “Mom!  Can I go over to Ashley’s house to eat dinner and watch TGIF tonight!?”

No, I’m not reminiscing about Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper and Boy Meets World.  I’m talking about the “my dad will drop us off if your mom can pick us up” type of hang outs favored among middle school girls the world over.  In my house there were rules, though: no seeing friends on school nights, no sleepovers if my grades slipped below B’s.  At the time it seemed so unfair.  And you know what, it was unfair!  Mom and dad were totally salting my game.

Turns out, their best intentions may have actually been hurting my school performance more than helping it. A new study out of UCLA is claiming that more friends equals better grades.  While the study focuses on adolescents, I like to think the same principles can be applied to college students as well.  Seriously, think about it:

1. Intro to Geology.  Rocks (ooh!) and glaciers (ah!) and some kid next to you drooling on your shoulder as he snores through another riveting lecture (…ew!).  You know there’s no way you’re going to make it through an entire semester of this snoozefest alone.  Since habitual skipping and boring professors put you on the highway to SeeYouAgainNextYear-ville, I say round up a posse and brave the storm together.  Good friends are always there to poke you when you zone out and cram with you at 2am the night before the exam.

2.  When you’re four tequila shots in, up on the bar shaking what yo mama gave ya, you want a true friend either a) making a fool of themselves right there along with you or b) standing down below holding their purse against your butt to hide the fact that you didn’t wear undies with your minidress. This doesn’t really relate to grades, but it’s still a good case as to why you should have friends.

3. You know how they say the best romances evolve out of friendships?  Well, I think the best grades and the best romances evolve out of being extra-friendly with your TA!  Instant A!

4.  If one keg equals roughly sixty beers and one party consists of thirty friends, how many kegs do you need to get everyone drunk? See, friends encourage you to brush up on math even outside class!

5.  As an alumna of the Greek system, I can speak from personal experience when I say having a whole house of sorority friends saved my grades on more than one occasion. I present to you the two most beautiful words in my undergrad vocabulary: test files.  It was law that after you took a class, you did not recycle those old binders of notes and exams.  Would you throw away an impossible to find designer purse?  No?  Well then why would you throw away Professor Leery’s legendarily brain-twisting psych exam?   Make your own test file system with your circle of friends and you’re destined for success!



  1. naema says:

    Dang I think this study might be right…I became more enclosed than usual since I started university to make sure i get excellent grades but my plan is just falling appart. I think I better resuscitate my social life.

  2. zerohundred says:

    Correlation, not causation! I have friends, but not a huge group. I have gotten through four years of college without a lot of help from friends, and my grades have been good. It certainly helps to have people to collaborate/corroborate with, but I wouldn't use this as an excuse to ditch studying to hang out with your friends 24/7.

  3. Jenn says:

    I think you have this backwards, your parents plots of not letting you hang out with your friends if your grades were dropping worked because they motivated you to do better because you HAD friends thus proving more friends = better grades.

  4. cat says:

    I think this is just person to person. I was at a college with a ton of friends, in a sorority and surrounded by people all the time…and i got horrible grades. I transferred to a new school where i don't know anyone, and don't really have any friends. It makes me study more, and get all my work done…now i have a 4.0!

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  6. […] Busy Bee: Girl, I know EXACTLY how you feel. Sometimes we are so caught up trying to get amazing grades and beefing up that resume that we often forget about our social lives. I don’t know what your college is like, but at my school, it’s hard to make friends because people are always bustling in and out of class. In addition, I didn’t live on campus my first year of college so I missed out on the late nights and campus diner experiences. If you are living on campus next year, try getting to know your floor mates well. Also, make it a goal to befriend at LEAST one person in each class. That way, even if you don’t become BFF’s with them, it’ll be nice to have someone cover notes for you on days you want to sleep in. Plus, studies say that more friends mean better grades! […]

  7. […] Get a study buddy who knows their stuff: Most college campuses have free tutors and study aids. FO FREE. And no one […]

  8. […] Socialize, socialize, socialize. Being around friends is so important for well-being (and maybe even your GPA!).  If you are feeling extra stressed, put down that textbook and take a coffee break with a […]

  9. alison says:

    i completely agree with naema…

    my grades dropped even as i focused on only school work/homework…

    i'm not saying people should be out partying every night (once in a while) but without a life, you are going to be depressed

    and besides, when you are like 90, you aren't going to care about what grade you got on your final or your gpa.

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