Time Management | The Student Pocket Guide
by Peter Bakare and Nathan French from Your Student Body.

If you’ve moved to college or university from high school, it can be a bit of a shock knowing that you are solely responsible for managing your own study time. Gone are the days when your parents and teachers are chasing you for homework – it’s now down to you! That said, there’s no need to panic. Here we have provided easy to follow steps for you to digest which will help set you on your way for a fruitful academic year…

Make a Timetable
First things first – make a timetable. It will be the single most effective way for you to manage your time. It doesn’t have to be a boring block of nothing but academia. Spice things up by allocating slots of time to your social life or even mini rewards for completing a certain amount of work. Chart your lectures and seminars, highlight your deadlines, figure out home study time, and all will fall into place.

Start Early
Filling out a timetable is one thing, actually going ahead with getting the work done is another, so making sure you start early is key to succeeding in sticking to it. Putting things off and leaving deadlines to the last minute is an easy trap to fall into, but it only makes things harder for you and increases stress whilst decreasing the time you have to spend on other things. Once you have a deadline set in stone, get reading. Do the hard graft early so you can relax with a decent amount of time to spend on your assignment.

It does not and should not have to be work, work, work. Make sure you find a healthy chunk of your day where you can just put your feet up, chill, watch tv, play Xbox… whatever you want. You need to keep your mind fresh so you can focus clearly on your work. Going at it 24/7 will ultimately tire you out and overload your brain!

Balance Studies with Paid Work
As you grow up, the more responsible you have to be in all aspects of your life. Your personal finances are no different, especially if you are at university. Keeping your bank balance ticking over is of course completely necessary, but if paid work is getting in the way of your studies then you will start to encounter problems. If you do experience issues getting assignments done, cut back on paid work and find a healthier balance. After all, you are at college or university for one main reason – to succeed in your studies.

Don’t Break Routine
The most important part of successfully managing your time is to find a routine and stick to it. Adjustments can be made but the rule is abide by what schedule is best for you.  Everyone manages their time differently so it’s about finding what you like and what’s efficient for you.  Use your new timetable, develop a routine and as monotonous as it sounds, don’t break it.

If you find yourself struggling to balance your studies or meet assignment deadlines there is no shame in speaking to your peers. Ask for help, seek advice from friends or call home. The longer you go without saying anything, the bigger the problem may get and the harder you may find it to look for help. Don’t forget you are in the same boat as thousands of others – you are not alone.