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Mastering time management

Time flies when you're having fun — and when you're studying. There never seems to be enough time to attend class, complete assignments and squeeze in time with friends.

Thankfully, time management is a learnable skill check out some of our favourite tips for making the most of your time.

Block time in your calendar

Make a visual plan so you can see how much spare time you should have. You may even find that you have more time than you think, which will reduce stress. Don't skimp on the details — record everything including:

  • classes and lab times
  • personal fun, work and exercise (take care of you)
  • time to prep immediately before each class
  • time for intensive study / weekly review time before each class
  • important SAIT dates (orientation, add/drop classes, holidays, exams)

Protect and maximize your time

  • Avoid time thieves. Even if you like your morning gossip session over coffee — it doesn't get your work done. Avoid unimportant tasks and focus on your priorities.
  • Manage interruptions. You can't avoid them altogether, but you can limit disturbances. Turn off your phone in class and when you're studying. At home, have a closed-door policy during your highly productive times so you can focus.
  • Learn to say no.
  • Maximize your high-energy times by using them for important tasks that need your focus.
  • During your low-energy periods, accomplish more mundane tasks that don't require a lot of brain power — catch up on reading, prepare your study materials, or return phone calls, emails or texts.
  • Boost your energy level with good diet and exercise. A short burst of activity will get your blood flowing and raise energy levels — same goes for regular, healthy snacks. Check out the various fitness classes and intramurals offered through the Wellness Centre.

Put procrastination on hold

  • Motivate yourself by establishing a reward for getting a particular task done and an even better reward for getting it done on time.
  • Remind yourself of the reason why you are doing this task in the first place. Focus on your personal motivation for taking a class or a program. Did you know, in their first year after graduation, the 2015 SAIT grads earned an average of $46,000 per year? Excellent motivation for when you're feeling discouraged.
  • Break down large projects into a list of smaller tasks. As you start crossing off items on your to-do list your motivation will build.
  • Team up with a friend! Set goals together and hold each other accountable.

Get prepped

Ease your transition to — or back to — post-secondary studies with PREP 100. This free online course takes four to six hours to complete and is designed to develop your skills around time management, coping with anxiety, strategic learning, improving recall and effective note-taking.

Need some help? Book a one-on-one appointment with an academic coach to develop a plan that works for you.

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