So I have a relatively high GPA (3.8) and constantly get compliments from my friends about my grades/achievements, etc. but I am worried that maybe I really am lacking understanding in my field. It seems like I have spent all of my college career worrying about my grades and not the actual material itself, and I have spent more time figuring out the points systems in each class than I have figuring out the topics at hand. For example, in PDE's the other day we had to use the divergence theorem from Calc 3. I was completely stumped and had forgotten it. In fact, I don't think I ever really understood it in Calculus to begin with. However, I got over a 95% in Calculus 3. How can one explain this? I have also pretty much forgotten most of the vector calculus from the course, but my transcript would tell you a different story. This also happens in other classes, like today I was working on special relativity with a study group and I got almost every problem wrong, because in the words of the group I was approaching each problem "in the hardest way possible." I have a tendency to see really obscure connections in the formulas, which lead me down a completely different path (usually erroneous) from the rest of the class, and I miss the more obvious method that the teacher expects us to use. Also notation completely throws me off when it isn't well explained. So do my grades really reflect my understanding. I mean surely I couldn't have made it through college with a 3.8 and understood nothing? Do you think there is a chance that I just continually received professors who were not strict enough? But even in the "easy" professors' classes, there were students who got F/D/C. I just can't figure it out.