For most students, time management is one of the most difficult lessons. It is also the most important element to include in your studies if you want to succeed and achieve your academic goals.
As a student, you have to attend classes, finish assignments and do exams and this can take a toll on you if you do not plan your time well. Time management will help you to take control of your studies.
The first rule of time management is to be organized. At the start of each semester, you need to write down all the work that you are required to complete. Include the classes that you will take, the assignments and any projects you have to do. To do this, you need to access a variety of tools that will help you to save time. These tools include email, answering machines, appointment calendars and to-do lists. You also need to organize your desk to make it easy to find your notes and books. The to-do list should include a list of things that you need to do each day and for specific weeks. If you attend any tuition or have to meet with a lecturer, make sure you include this in your appointment calendar.
Time management also requires you to plan ahead. Determine how long you will study a particular subject. This should be based on how you perform in the specific subject. Each subject needs to be prioritized according to its level of importance. You also need to identify the most appropriate time to study. People are different and their concentration levels vary depending on the time of day. There are some students who are more alert in the morning while others are able to take in more information in the afternoon. Choose the time when you are most alert to study the most complex courses. When your concentration is low, you can study courses that you are already good at. This is also the best time to run your errands and chores around the house.
Your studying time should also be in short time blocks. Each block should have a short break to ensure you remain focused. Studying for very long periods without a break will only wear you out. When you are tired, it is impossible to understand your study material. While you are on these short breaks, your brain is able to process the information that you have already studied.
The environment that you are in should be conducive for studying. This means that you should stay away from distractions that will reduce the amount of time you spend studying. If you live in a students residence hall, pick a time when there are few people around because it will be quieter.
In your study schedule, you should also include some discussion time. Studying with a partner can be very helpful because they can assist you in the areas that you are not good at. Make sure you choose a partner who is serious with his or her studies to avoid wasting time.