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Managing My Time Effectively

Organising your time is essential if you are to juggle your lectures, course work, revision, part time job and social life. If you think ahead and plan your time, you can achieve a good work-life balance. Failure to plan may impact on your studies and your social life in a negative way.

Time in general

Don’t be too ambitious. Be realistic about what you can achieve in the time you have.

Fill out a week-by-week timetable. This lets you see exactly when you have time to study.

Block out time. Make sure you include lectures, lab work, seminars, course work, sleeping, eating, sports and social or other commitments.

Course work

How do you eat an elephant? Impossible to do in one sitting, but achievable if you divide it into small, manageable sections. It’s much easier, psychologically as well as practically, to tackle lots of small projects than it is to tackle one large mammoth project. Ensure you set realistic deadlines for each part.

List everything you have to do. Include any deadlines for each activity, then rate the priority of each as High, Medium or Low.

Plot your priorities. Work on a weekly or monthly calendar so you can see your commitments at a glance. Colour code the priorities for easy identification.

Create a realistic timetable. Ensure that you give each piece of coursework a reasonable amount of time and aim to complete it a week before its due date.

Establish your daily cycle. This involves identifying what time of day you work best – some people prefer mornings, others prefer evenings. Tackle your most difficult tasks when you’re most alert and active, and save the more mundane tasks for other times.

Finish within the deadline. Aim to finish each piece of course work a week in advance of the hand in date. This gives you plenty of time to deal with the inevitable production problems (no ink in the printer, not enough paper, etc).
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