How to Schedule Your Study Time
I’ve been asked multiple times to make a post about how to schedule your study time, so here it is! This is a little bit different of a schedule because it’s over mid-semester break (Easter break for most), but it still works.
Step 1: Write down everything you need to do.
Get out a piece of notebook paper or open a new document on your computer and unleash your brain’s to-do list. Write everything down from classes, work, events, and extracurriculars to your work outs, meals, showers, and sleep. Nothing is too small to be written on the list, so if you need to remember to shave your legs, write that down!!
Step 2: Assign each task an estimated amount of time it’ll take to complete.
This part is really crucial for me because it takes my organization a step further to help me achieve my studying and planning goals. It also gives me a reality check – sometimes I’m so ambitious I try to bite off more than I can chew. If I know from the beginning that I most likely won’t achieve everything I need to do, I won’t be as disappointed come the end of my planning and studying. It also tells me I probably need to pick it up during the week and stop procrastinating…
Step 3: Open up Excel, create a table on another computer program, or grab a piece of paper.
Next we’ll make the calendar with a readout of our obligations. I generally use Excel or a piece of paper, but I find that excel works best because I can edit future events easier if I didn’t quite complete a task I planned for.
Have the first column for times, then a column following for each day you want to plan. It helps to have the time column skinnier with the days’ columns wider so text can fit in easily. I leave two rows per hour (therefore one line is equal to one half hour) so I can plan for events or tasks that won’t be taking up whole hours.
Step 4: Designate a color for each of your scheduled categories.
These colors are the same as in my planner:
- Purple: Anatomy & Physiology
- Pink: Genetics
- Blue: Beverage Management
- Orange: Economics
- Red: Work
- Green: Extracurriculars
- Black: Personal (showers, meals, sleep, relaxation, etc.)
- Yellow: Travel
I enter in all of my class, work, event, and extracurricular times first – things I can’t miss. These are important to put into your schedule first because you can easily schedule studying around them.
Step 5: Once all of your obligations are plugged into your schedule, it’s time to fill in your studying.
This is where the required times for your tasks help a great deal! It’s easy to spot an hour block here or there and plug in a 45 minute or hour task… something that may be a little hard for some when they’re just going through their day and have a block. I know whenever I get an hour block I try to nap or rest as much as possible, but this frequently puts me behind. :(
Also, it may help you to pull out your planner and see what exams, quizzes, or assignments are coming up soon. You should rank these at a higher priority and complete these sooner rather than later to ensure you complete them.
I also group lesser tasks; for example, on Thursday night at 11:00 PM I grouped two homework assignments because they really shouldn’t take that long and they’re on the computer at the same time, etc. It’s just easier for me to get them done at the same time. Just like if you need to go to a few different stores, try to go to them all in one trip. It’ll save you time, money, and gas!
Step 6: As you’re adding tasks to your schedule, make sure you’re crossing them off your list you made. You don’t want to miss anything or add something twice!
This is pretty self-explanatory but also important! Make sure you’re adding everything and not missing anything.
Step 7: Make sure to schedule enough sleep during your night as well as time to eat/relax.
This is the most important step of them all! Without recharging your smart little brain and body, how are you going to have the fuel to move on? Also, try snacking on fruits and veggies and drinking water when you’re studying. I’m one to love candy when I’m studying and it’s hard to say “no” to my precious chocolate and skittles, but I know they’ll just bring my metabolism and energy down. Drinking a lot of water helps too because that means more bathroom breaks – which means more study breaks! ;)
I hope you found this post helpful. If you’d like to see other posts about my studying tips and tricks, please share this post and leave me a message about what I can improve or what you’d like some advice on. Happy studying! – grxeek