Student success depends on your use of effective time management. Time management is a skill that can be learned. First, you need to understand how your time is spent. Keep a record for several days documenting how much time is spent in class, studying, visiting with friends and family, working and eating. Take a look at the list to see where you time is going.
Once you know how your time is spent, start a daily or weekly planner. Put down your classes, appointments, meetings, work schedule, assignment due dates and other activities. Check the planner every day so you will know what needs to be done that day. A daily “to-do” list may assist you in knowing what needs to be done immediately. This list will help you keep your assignments in a priority order. It is a good idea to keep a monthly or annual calendar so the long range dates can be set. Get a copy of your school calendar and put in the important dates and holidays, so you will know when to expect tests and other assignments to be due.
In order to use your time wisely, put your assignments in a priority order with the most difficult one first. If you do your most difficult task at the beginning, it will be out of the way and the others will be easier. Be sure to schedule time to study. Make sure that you schedule enough time to study but not enough time to get restless. Start studying in a distraction free environment – and don’t listen to the television or leave your cell phone on. It is a good idea to study for shorter periods of time so you won’t be exhausted rather than hours at a time.
Schedule time to allow for tests, papers, and speeches. These larger assignments may need to be broken down into smaller bits and pieces. Be sure to go over your lecture notes within a twenty-four hour time period to keep the material fresh in your mind. Try to review your notes and any reading just before your class period so the material will be fresh on your mind.
Once you become aware of how you use your time, you will be able to manage it and do well in your studies.