30 Inspirational Quotes for Students

Updated on February 26, 2019
K S Lane profile image

K S Lane is a student of science and is deeply passionate about educating others on her favourite topics.

Being a student can be tough. Between cramming for exams, studying until your eyes fall out of your head, and trying to maintain a social life on top of everything, it's understandable that every student needs a bit of extra motivation and inspiration every now and then. This article lists some of the best inspirational quotes for students that have ever been written. One read of the quotes on this list and you'll feel up to studying in no time!

This article lists 30 inspirational and motivational quotes for students.
This article lists 30 inspirational and motivational quotes for students. | Source

"Strive for progress, not perfection." Unknown Author

This quote is great for those perfectionists out there who feel like they can never do anything right. Trust me, I know the feeling. It's important to remind yourself that making mistakes and failing isn't the end of the world, as long as you're making progress and still pushing towards your end goals.

"Failure is the opportunity to begin more intelligently." Henry Ford
So, you failed that big calculus test. So what? All that means is that the next time you take a similar test you're going to be better informed. As long as you're learning from your mistakes, then failure is always a step in the right direction.

"I think it is possible for ordinary people to chose to be extraordinary." Elon Musk
It can be downright disheartening when you find yourself having to work twice as hard to understand a concept than one of those people who just seem to 'get it.' In this situation, it's important to remind yourself that you're no less extraordinary than those annoying geniuses. If you want to be extraordinary, you just have to chose it.

"There are no traffic jams on the extra mile." Zig Ziglar
People who, as Ziglar puts it, 'go the extra mile' are few and far between. If you really want to succeed, then that's what you need to do. Push yourself that little bit further and I promise you'll reap the rewards in the future.

"Genius is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration." Thomas Edison
For some people, things come naturally while for others it's more difficult. However, those who aren't naturally smart actually have an advantage in some regards, because they learn the value of hard study earlier on and, as Thomas Edison so eloquently puts it, true success and genius is mostly down to hard work.

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"I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have." Thomas Jefferson

'It doesn't matter how hard I work because most things just come down to luck anyway, right?' WRONG! You'll find in your studies, and indeed also in life in general, that the more effort you put in the better 'luck' you seem to have. Is this some kind of cosmic reward for hard work or is it just because good luck doesn't exist in the first place? We may never know, but hey, if Thomas-freaking-Jefferson said it, then it must be true.

"Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out." Robert Collier

This is a good one for those times that it feels like every task you have to complete or every piece of homework that you need to get finished is some astronomically complex and difficult mission. As Robert Collier suggests, it helps to remember that getting to the end is just a matter of completing lots of tiny, simple tasks. Worried you won't have your essay complete on time? All you need to do is write one sentence at a time until it's done.

"There are no shortcuts to any place worth going." Beverly Sills

It can be tempting sometimes to take short cuts in regards to your study. Maybe there's a concept that you don't understand and you figure hey, instead of figuring this out I can just skip it because it might not be on the test anyway. Maybe you've been working on a particularly difficult maths problem for the past half an hour and you know that the answer is just a google search away. In times like these, it helps to remember that by cutting corners you're really only hurting yourself.

"Education is the key to success in life, and teachers make a lasting impact in the lives of their students." Solomon Ortiz
Respect your teachers, plain and simple. They've chosen a tremendously difficult career with not enough monetary compensation because they care about you and your education. The very least that you can do is be attentive in class and shoot them a quick 'thanks for that lesson!' every now and then. Besides the fact that they deserve to be praised, developing a strong relationship with your teacher will help you during your studies.

"Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone." Pablo Picasso
This one's a touch morbid, but what else do you expect from Picasso? If you're thinking of leaving something until tomorrow when you really could be doing it today, remember that dying in your sleep is always a possibility. Do you really want to have your teacher stand up at your funeral and announce that you hadn't completed some of your homework? I think not.

"Education breeds confidence. Confidence breeds hope. Hope breeds peace.” Confucius
Confucius says that doing your Science homework will contribute to world peace. If that doesn't get you motivated then I don't know what will!

“Who questions much, shall learn much, and retain much." Francis Bacon
This is a great reminder that study is about more than rote learning a bunch of facts. To really develop your knowledge and understanding you need to question what you see before you and make links between pieces of information. Not only will this approach make you more intelligent but, according to Bacon, it will also help you retain more knowledge.

"Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.” Anthony J. D'Angelo

Learning should stop as soon as you set down the textbooks, or even as soon as you leave school. if you're really passionate about knowledge and learning and work on cultivating your curiosity then you'll find a way to discover new things every day!

“A smart man makes a mistake, learns from it, and never makes that mistake again. But a wise man finds a smart man and learns from him how to avoid the mistake altogether.” Roy H. Williams
This isn't to say that you shouldn't be making your own mistakes and learning from them, but it's important to remember that you can also learn from other people's mistakes. This way you don't have to bumble around making every mistake in the book before you actually learn anything.

"What we learn with pleasure we never forget.” Alfred Mercier

Really make an effort to enjoy your studies and pay extra attention to the subjects or areas that you're passionate about. Doing this will not only make you more excited to study but will help you remember things. Two birds with one stone!

“Everybody’s a teacher if you listen.” Doris Roberts

Sometimes your classroom teacher's way of teaching or explaining things just doesn't gel with your way or learning, and this is okay! Seek help from other sources; your friends, other teachers, your parents, anyone! If you just ask you'll find that everyone's a teacher in one way or another.

“Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” Malcolm X

Malcolm X is telling you to study, so you'd better get to the books right now! You don't want to be turned back from the future because you're missing your metaphorical passport, do you?

"Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..." Dory, Finding Nemo

There are those days when it feels as if you're drowning in the amount of work and study that you have to get through. On these days, it helps to remember a particularly famous, classic quote that you might remember from childhood. Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming...

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced." Van Gough

This quote applies to more disciplines than just painting. If someone's trying to put you down and telling you that you'll never be good at a certain subject or that something that you're passionate about isn't worth the time, the best way to prove them wrong is by doing exactly what they told you was impossible. And trust me, the sweet satisfaction of seeing the stupid look on their face as they watch you succeed is the best revenge you could ever dream of.

"Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time." Thomas Edison

Another poignant Edison quote- that man was an inspiration machine! He's completely correct in saying that the best, and only, way to succeed is to just keep trying.

Knowledge is power!
Knowledge is power!

"Procrastination makes easy things hard, and hard things harder." Mason Cooley

It can be so, so tempting to leave things until tomorrow. After all, there's a really important youtube video that needs watching and a friend that you want to catch up with. There's no harm until leaving things until a bit later, right? Wrong. Every second of that youtube video that you watch you'll be subconsciously worrying about that task you left undone, and hanging out with friends isn't nearly as fun when you have uncompleted homework hanging over your head. Getting things out of the way is the best way to avoid this extra stress.

"The expert in everything was once a beginner." Unknown

It's easy to despair that you'll never be able to measure up to your academic idols and that you're just not smart enough. However, as this unknown author points out, the very best man or woman in the field that you're interested in was once a beginner just like you. Everyone has to start somewhere!

"Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did." Newt Gingrich

When you feel like you can't do anymore, its the exact right time to knuckle down and study harder. This relates to the Zigler quote included earlier in this list; "There are no traffic jams on the extra mile." When you feel like giving up and like you've hit your limit then you know that if you push just a little further you're getting ahead.

"It always seems impossible until it's done." Unknown

How many times have you been puzzling over a seemingly impossible problem only to finally solve it and realise that it actually wasn't so difficult after all? If you apply this sort of philosophy to every challenge you come across during your schooling career then I promise that you'll be unstoppable.

“You have to believe in yourself when no one else does.” Serena Williams

Sometimes people will doubt your ability to achieve goals; it's a fact of life. The sole purpose of your friends and family isn't to be your own personal cheer squad and you shouldn't blame them for not being so. Instead, be your own cheer squad. You're the one that knows yourself the best and you know what you can and can't achieve. Don't let other people impact your self-belief.

Libraries are great places to study if you're in need of a bit of inspiration. Being surrounded by all those books is a fantastic feeling!
Libraries are great places to study if you're in need of a bit of inspiration. Being surrounded by all those books is a fantastic feeling! | Source

"The purpose of our lives is to be happy." Dalai Lama

This one doesn't relate directly to study or hard work, but it's important all the same. If homework is really getting you down, it's okay to take a break. There's a line between procrastination and self-care, and once you find it you'll find that your student experience changes for the better. It isn't healthy to be bent over your books in every free moment that you have; make sure you take some time to work on hobbies and see friends. If you're not happy, then what's the point?

“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.” Bruce Lee

This is great advice for life in general, but you can also apply it specifically to school and study. When you're coming up with strategies for time management or study it's helpful to use this kind of mindset. Bruce Lee is the man!

“A year from now on you may wish you had started today.” Karen Lamb

This is especially poignant around exam time. if you wait until the last minute to study, you're going to wish that you'd started months ago. When deciding these things it's important to question what your future self will feel. Sure, you don't want to study right now, but if you don't then your future self will wonder what the hell you were doing three months ago. Stay accountable to yourself!

“Only you and you alone can change your situation. Don’t blame it on anything or anyone.” Leonardo DiCaprio

'Yeah I got a bad grade this time around, but that's because my teacher sucks. And yeah I'm the bottom of my class, but that's because everyone else gets private tuition because their parents are rich. It's not my fault.' While circumstances like this can affect your performance, they should never be used as an excuse unless you're already working the hardest you possibly can. If you're only putting in 50% effort, then it's no one's fault but your own.

"The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows." Sydney J. Harris

Of all the fantastic quotes on this list, this one has to be my favourite. Sometimes it's easy to lose sight of why you're trying to get an education and why you're trying to work so hard. As Harris says, your education will help you to see the world more clearly. It will allow you to break free of your own bubble and see things as they truly are. It will change your life. If that doesn't motivate you to study, then I don't know what will.

These bored students could definitely use some inspiration!
These bored students could definitely use some inspiration! | Source

In Conclusion:

And there we have it; 30 inspirational and motivational quotes for students. If you still don't feel motivated to study then fear not, because I have more lists of inspirational quotes that you can access here and here. Now stop procrastinating, finish your homework and, in the immortal words of Dory the fish, "just keep swimming, just keep swimming..."

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    © 2019 K S Lane

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