Academic Focus: Time Management
Time management is one of the most critical academic skills in college success. Students can develop and sustain their time management skills with practice. The following tips can help you form a foundation for functioning time management techniques, after which you can build upon on your own. You're encouraged to mix techniques together, or incorporate your own favorite ones as well!
1. See the Big Picture
Create a monthly and weekly schedule. On the month view of a calendar, write down all due dates for assignments in every class. On the weekly view, block out the times you have class. Then, block out times you have any other immovable commitments (work, club meetings, events etc.). Next, block out times you would like to study for each class. Be sure to select realistic study times that you know you'll be productive in. It also may be helpful to color code each block. Finally, the remaining space you have is relaxation time, or time to use at your discretion.
2. Pay Attention to the Details
Now that you've selected study times that work best for you, it's important to be as efficient as possible within those time frames. Each week, make a list of precisely what you would like to accomplish within each study block. This ensures you are going in with a plan to be productive, and not waste time on figuring out how to prioritize your assignments.
Example: I have a study block from 12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. to study Biology on Monday. Within that time frame, I want to do problems 1-20 in the back of the textbook, and then read the section on cells in Chapter 8.
3. Give Rest Priority Status
Sleep contributes significantly to productivity. Try to get your work done early in the day to ensure you can get to bed at a reasonable time. Additionally, it's not about how much sleep you get, but rather the quality of sleep. Going to bed early ensures you will get the quality sleep you need to wake up feeling refreshed and ready to take on the day.
4. Technology is Your Friend (Sometimes)
Phones have amazing capabilities. Use a reminder app to remember tasks. But be careful. Don't let your phone become a distraction.
5. Seek Help
As new semesters approach, you'll notice you may need to alter your strategies to accommodate new courses or challenges. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Reach out to SARC for a Learning Skills Consultation to revamp your strategies and gather new ones. You may also learn more about time management by attending a SARC Academic Success Workshop, reviewing one of our many handouts, or viewing our short YouTube video.