skip to content
 

Learning to plan your time effectively is one of the most crucial skills you can develop during your time at University, which will:

  • help you in your future career
  • help you to complete assignments and meet deadlines
  • increase your self reliance and confidence.

Developing a study schedule

Planning your independent study time helps you to focus on your goals and what is required to complete them. You're more likely to stick to your study plan if you take into account your own study habits:

  • what is your most productive working pattern?
  • what are your weaknesses in managing time?

Your schedule should include all of your work, study and personal commitments. It may be helpful to develop a weekly schedule to establish a regular working routine, and create longer term timetables to help plan your studies further ahead and set long term goals.

Using a wall chart or calendar:

  1. include all the tasks you have to complete
  2. note the deadlines for each task
  3. estimate as realistically as possible the amount of time required to complete each task
  4. prioritise in terms of urgency
  5. break down the task and set targets for completing each stage.

You should allow extra time for unforeseen difficulties, include time for leisure & relaxation and be flexible and prepared to adjust your timetable if you are getting behind.

Successful studying

Whilst studying you may find it useful to:

  • have a designated study area and keep it tidy - a chaotic desk can give the sense of being out of control
  • alternate the tedious tasks with interesting ones, to stop yourself losing concentration
  • do the most difficult tasks when your concentration is at its best
  • take regular breaks.

Prioritising effectively

Prioritise tasks by:

  • establishing a clearly defined objective
  • evaluating the relevance of different tasks to the final aims of your assignment
  • distinguishing between aspects of your research which are key and those which are marginal.