Study Skills 3# Time-management for students
If you feel that you don’t have time to accomplish your tasks even though you don’t procrastinate that much, it’s highly probable that your current time-management isn’t effective. Panicking during exam periods doesn’t have to be part of your student life and forget the lie that you work best under pressure. You don’t. How to plan well?
You have to know what awaits you
Buy a diary or use Google Calendar, it doesn’t matter whether you decide for paper or digital means. What you need to do is to mark all deadlines and dates of your exams immediately after you know them. If you do that, nothing will surprise you anymore because you’ll be reminded of what awaits you every time you open your diary.
You can choose your hard days
Exam period doesn’t have to be one crazy roller coaster of all-nighters and energy drinks. If you plan carefully, it’s totally possible to avoid being overwhelmed. If you find out that you have two deadlines for essays and an exam in the same week, you can still make it without unnecessary stress. Just start preparing in advance. To be honest, university doesn’t test your ability to cram as much as it tests your planning skills.
Don’t wait for deadlines
Having a deadline doesn’t mean you have to write that essay a night before it’s due. Besides, sending your essay early means that you’re done while your classmates keep procrastinating and panic later. And if you have an essay and an exam in the same week, that takes care of one thing so you’ll have more time for studying.
Create a study plan
Thinking that you have a lot of time because it’s only November or April is an illusion. Especially if you’re studying programmes that require a massive amount of cramming or solving equations. Make a solid study plan and stick to it. Make sure you have all study materials beforehand, borrow those books from your library so that you’re set when you sit down to do the actual work. There’s nothing worse than cramming a night before the exam and finding out you don’t have any reliable sources of information because your notes are crappy and you missed one third of the lectures.
Write down all your tasks
Leave nothing to your memory alone. As David Allen, the guru of planning, says: make a habit of putting every task on paper. If your brain is busy keeping tracks of your deadlines and other important dates, it takes away your mental capacity. Make a list of all your tasks you need to accomplish and then let your brain relax. If you combine this method with your diary, you’ll always know WHAT to do and WHEN.
Use all time available
There’re many occasions you can use for studying even if you’re not behind your desk or in the library. Remember all those times you have to wait for something (doctor’s office, before lectures, queues) or how much time you spend commuting. These time slots can be used for studying or at least light revisions. Even five minutes can become an effective revision of your study material.
Make studying your priority
This requires a totally different mindset. If you’re a full-time student, then your job is to study. Literally. So take it seriously, consider school an investment for your future. Don’t waste your precious study life getting drunk each day or just hanging around. You’d regret it later.
Reward yourself after exams
You’ll like this one! After you successfully pass your exams, don’t forget to reward yourself for your efforts. Now’s the right time to celebrate with friends, go to the cinema, buy something nice for yourself or play that newest videogame. Do whatever that brings you joy!
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