Time Management While in College : You might need to buy a planner!

While in college, you will be bombarded with course registration, managing assignments, emails, and trying to have a social life. As a first-semester freshman, it will be difficult trying to find balance but in your second semester, it will get easier! The key is finding tricks that work for you.

Have a planner

With having so many assignments and exams for each class, it will get hard to remember when things are due. The easiest way to keep up is through a planner. Whether it is online or a physical planner, having a system that works for you is beneficial because you can see what needs to be done and you can plan ahead of time. The problem with having a planner is that you must remember to write in it. If you are someone who will forget to schedule in your planner every day, find some time to sit and schedule out the week or the upcoming weeks. Start with the most important things that need to be done within this week or an exam that is in two weeks. Some students prefer having a note on your computer. That works too!

Keep a timer or alarm

Besides a maintaining a planner, having a timer or alarm might help you arrive to appointments on time. If you are someone who easily forgets to write down what time you need to go to your SI session or to go to office hours, an alarm might be the way to go. It is best to set an alarm as soon as you learn of the meeting or assignment. Set your reminder for at least thirty minutes before the meeting so you are not rushing to get there. If thirty minutes is too much lead-time, then set it to ten or fifteen minutes. This will prevent you from being late, forgetting that you even had office hours in the first place, or accidently overbooking yourself for two events at the same time.  

How much time do you give yourself to study

The hardest part about being a first-year student is managing to study for an exam while having ten other assignments to worry about. One way to help get everything done is by spreading your studying out throughout the week. For example, if an exam is on chapters from one through five, studying one to two chapters a day might be best. Then, setting up office hours or having a couple sessions with a few classmates to help refresh your memory two days before the exam. The best way to understand how to manage this is knowing yourself and how you would do best on an exam. If you are someone who learns by studying the day before, then make sure to get as many assignments done ahead of time as possible. Then set up a few hours to just focus on studying the day before a test. (and write down your study blocks in your planner!)

You will have hiccups along the way

Do not be too hard on yourself as you learn to balance and plan your time. Talk to your peers and older students and find out what worked for them and remember to schedule some time for fun and rest.

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