it’s the time of the semester when you might have just taken your first exam. Let not your heart be troubled. You can overcome a bad first grade, in most cases.
If your first exam was worth 10% of the grade, you still have 90% of the grade to win or lose. If that 90% shows a great improvement, then the instructor might be willing to give you the benefit of the doubt. You might not get an A in the course, but you never know.
How much, if any, extra credit does your instructor give? Take him or her up on the offer. (It’s only allowed at one of the three colleges where I teach.) I have a policy of keeping track of who writes the extra credit. At the end of the term, if someone has made a repeated effort and turned in all the extra credit available, I take that into consideration when doing final grading. It’s no guarantee of a grade but I know someone who had an F in a course (not one of mine) who had made all kinds of effort and the teacher gave that person a C.
If the instructor has said that all exams are a certain format, then the good news about the exam is that you know know how the teacher tests students. Keep that in mind as you prepare for the next test. Study, study, study and remember: this is a numbers game. You can win it, if you just hang in there!