Students start college, career training or any type of post-secondary education programs with high expectations. Many students envision themselves as being successful in their course work and studying, but they fail to put together a realistic plan, routine and work schedule that will enable them to achieve academic greatness.
The following suggestions will help you, not only plan for good time management but also help with improving your academic standings.
Step 1: Prepare a Term Calendar
- Include high-level activities such as class time and schedules that do not change
Step 2: Prepare a Calendar by Weekly Activities
- Add in weekly items that need to be completed by each class such as assignments, tests, events, and discussion boards
- All school activities
- All out of school and extra-curricular activities
- Add in your weekly schedule for out of school activities such as work, family events, and extra-curricular activities
Step 3: Prepare a Daily Schedule – Your daily schedule may vary based upon the outcome of each class, changes at work, or changes within your personal life. Pick a day each week (such as Sunday) and prepare your weekly schedule
- Jot down things that need to be done for the coming day.
- Write down everything from the prior day that was assigned that may need to be completed within the next day/days.
- Include any activities from your weekly schedule that need to be included for the next day that was not previously on your calendar.
You will notice that one of the key fundamentals to managing your study time is to start with your overall schedule and then working your way down to the details. A calendar as a whole provides direction and instruction for accomplishing your big picture career and school goals.
Key Factors to Improve Study Habits
- Establish a study zone that offers a quiet place with little to no background noise and limited interruptions.
- Take great notes. If you are not good at taking notes yourself, work with other students to share notes. Remember, you do not need to write everything down, just the essential topics or examples that your teacher referenced during class.
- Get enough sleep! A good night’s sleep is statistically proven to help people better retain and understand information. Most students will say if they get a least eight hours of sleep they feel less stress and are more alert during classes and exams.
- Prioritize your assignments by due date and time needed to complete the task.
- Join a study group at your college, career school or institution. Study groups offer several advantages to students because typically each member is assigned a topic and then provides a summary to the group.