Effective Studies – 9. Time Management

I have gathered my best advice on how to study in this series of blog posts – Effective Studies.

Time Management

Time management means making a plan for how to spend your time. As I mentioned in the last post, working in units of 45 minutes with concentrated work and 15 minutes break is a nice setup.

Weekly schedule with Units

Split each day into eight 45+15 units (sums up to eight hours of work a day which is a reasonable goal to have) and make a schedule for your week. Every Friday, I sit down and create the schedule for the next week. In that way, I know that I will have enough time to finish all those tasks that I have.

One unit might contain:

  • Prepare for lecture x
  • Make a summary for lecture y
  • Do exercises belonging to chapter z
  • Read chapter xy
  • Work on project yz with xz
  • Lecture zy
  • Exercise session yx
  • Discuss chapter/lecture/exercise zx

When you make a schedule, it is essential to consider when you have your golden hours. Golden hours are the hours that you work best. For me, they are in the morning, but for some, they are late in the evening. Try to find yours and plan your week according to them.

Know your deadlines

To plan your week, you must know what you have to do and what you need to prioritize. Ask your teacher about a plan for the course. It should at least contain:

  • What topic will be brought up at each lecture?
  • What exercises are you expected to do each week?
  • When will you have labs or projects, and what do they cover?
  • When do you have deadlines for hand-ins and such?

I use Asana.com to keep track of all things that I have to do and when I have to do them. There are many other similar apps. Find one that you like! When a new course starts, put all those deadlines into the app, and then it will be a self-propelled procedure of making weekly schedules.

Contents of this blog post series:

  1. Put your cellphone away
  2. Create a study place
  3. Prepare for a lecture
  4. Take notes during the lectures
  5. Summarize lectures
  6. Read the book
  7. Do exercises
  8. Keep concentration
  9. Do time management with units
  10. Prepare for the exam
  11. Do the exam
  12. Evaluation after the exam

Thoughts or questions? –  contact me.
Good luck with your studies!


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