Time Management for Students
Managing your time is one of the most challenging aspect of being a student. Below are tips for managing your time well so you can meet your goals.
Keep a monthly schedule.
- On the monthly schedule, list the things you know are coming up.
- By listing at the beginning of the semester when future assignments, tests and projects are due, you can periodically glance ahead and be sure you allow enough time to complete these.
- Be sure to list on your monthly schedule, any events of a personal nature in which you will be involved. This helps you avoid getting caught up in choosing between school commitments and personal commitments.
- On the weekly time charts, put in all your fixed commitments for the week.
- Schedule in your study time.
- Put in meal times, including meal preparation.
- Be sure to schedule in time for leisure activities and relaxation.
- Schedule your sleep time.
- On the Daily Activity Guide, divide your activities into three categories.
- Category A is the things you must do.
- Category B is the things you should do.
- Category C is the things you could do.
- At the end of the day, check yourself to see how well you did.
Time Wise Tips
- Use small pockets of time. Carry a book and a notepad with you. When you are waiting in line or waiting for an appointment, use this time to read a few pages or to jot down ideas, etc.
- Tackle the hard things first. The way you feel after getting the hard things done can give momentum to your day. You will feel like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders when the hard things are completed.
- Identify your best time and use it well. If you are a morning person, schedule this time to do the hardest tasks or to study and ready the most important things.
- Start projects as soon as they are assigned. Getting started is often the most difficult part of an assignment or project. One of the most common reasons for D papers is the fact that they were written the night before they were due. Assignments always seem to pile up. A little work on a report every week will allow you time to add quality to your work and also keep you from being stressed at the last minute.
- Keep to-do lists. Keep a notebook in your purse or pockets or keep Post-It notes in your car, in your briefcase, in your kitchen, etc. When you think of something you need to do or pick up at the store or something you want to remember, you can jot it down as a reminder before you forget.
- Divide tasks into small, manageable chunks. When things pile up or a task seems overwhelming, breaking it down into smaller parts helps make it manageable and gives you more incentive to begin the small steps toward your goal. For example, most papers have at least five stages — picking a topic, researching the topic, reading and taking notes on articles, organizing the information and writing the paper. Setting a time frame in which to accomplish each step makes the paper seem less overwhelming.
- Take time to take care of yourself. Give yourself a reward for doing a particularly difficult task or assignment or simply for taking the first steps toward a goal. Rewards can be simple, a hot bath, a cup of tea, coffee with a friend, a walk in the park, a good movie or an ice cream sundae. If you don't take care of yourself, you'll run out of steam sooner or later, or you'll find yourself getting sick or out of sorts or losing your enthusiasm. You are worth rewarding!