Time management for college students is fundamental to success, both academically and socially. Learning to prioritize and organize tasks is a skill you'll need way beyond college, and which will hold you in good stead in your professional life too!
During college you will be extremely busy with attending classes, studying, socializing, extracurricular activities such as sports, politics, groups of all sorts, etc. If you thought to gain acceptance into college was difficult, you'll realize once you're in the thick of it that entering was the EASY part!
Doing well in college is often not about how smart you are, how well you scored on your college entrance exams or even about how hard you study. College success is about finding time to do your studies justice while finding the time to interact and socialize with your fellow students. Too much of one or the other creates an imbalance that may leave you feeling less than enthusiastic about your college experience.
Time management for college students is a skill that, like any other, you can learn through practice and perseverance.
Out of every thousand people, the most organized person will achieve the most, do it faster with the least amount of effort AND have the highest amount of free time.
1. Set goals. You may want to set goals for each week, each semester, and each year. Write down what your academic goals are, your health goals, your relationship goals, your financial goals, etc.One of your academic goals may be to get and maintain a 3.5 GPA or gain acceptance into an honors program. Some health goals may be to lose 10 pounds or increase your muscle mass. You may want to find a girlfriend/boyfriend as one of your relationship goals or get to spend more quality time with friends. You get the drift. Write out what goals you would like to accomplish for the week, the month and the year.
2. Prioritize. Once you've decided on the goals you want to accomplish, you need to prioritize the activities you need to do to achieve your goals. Prioritizing will tell you what tasks need to be done first, which is essential to the success of time management for college students.Take a notebook and write down your most important goal for the year. If your most important goal for the year is to get a 3.5 GPA, for example, then that would be your number one priority. Write down what you need to do each month and each week to achieve a 3.5 GPA.
GET A 3.5 GPA FOR THE YEAR
Do this for each goal you wish to accomplish and then stick to the schedule you have set for yourself. You'll be amazed at how much you can get done. Make sure your program includes recreation time. By doing this, you will have plenty of time to engage in all the activities you want to do as well as keep up with your studies.
3. Use any extra time wisely. For example, instead of twiddling your thumbs while waiting for a professor to arrive for class, write down topic ideas for the speech class you are taking or work on your budget. Use any time you have constructively, and you will find that 24 hours in a day is more than enough time to get done the things you need to get done. By doing this, you'll not only be able to keep up with your studies, but you'll also be able to spend more time socializing and relaxing.
Frankly, prioritizing, as mentioned above, is the key to time management for college students. However, paying attention to priorities can overwhelm a student who does not use time efficiently. If that is the case for you, learn the skills mentioned in the third tip. You may need to engage a teacher, successful student, mentor, or professional coach to overcome past habits and beliefs.
I can remember my college days. I used the Coleman method to take notes in some classes, highlighted just a few words on each page of my textbook, and used small groups to solve practice problems. Meanwhile, my girlfriend and future wife struggled with highlighting 90 percent of every page of her textbook and taking down every word the professor uttered. Somehow, I managed to know more on the test, despite paying less attention to learning details.
Remember to study smart, not hard!
Don't highlight the whole book or try to memorize all of your notes. This will sabotage your efforts at good time management for college students. Instead, perfect identifying the information and concepts that are most important and testable. If you are not good at this skill, develop it by working with other students and teachers. Ask questions of those students who seem to do well with the least effort? You might be surprised to find that you're as smart and capable as they are. However, you may be using your time trying to learn too much while mastering little.
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