– A Highlighter
– Fun stuff to write with
– A small basket
Fact: You retain up to 70% more of the information by writing notes by hand. Digital tools have their place, but nothing can replace the almighty pen and paper when it comes to absorbing info and capturing thoughts. Here’s how you can use the above items to maximize your success this semester.
Tip 1: Print your assignment out. Using your highlighter, flush out key facts in a project. Then, chunk out manageable pieces, and write the amount of time you believe it will take to complete each one. Add at least one hour to each piece for contingency. Schedule this time as if it’s another class, or an important appointment, because it is.
Tip 2: Find a legit study partner, or at least, commit to being one! Accountability will take you far on your time-management journey. Use the small basket to place your turned off/muted phones in, face down (but set a timer on at least one of them to signal when it’s time to take a quick break, and a second timer to signal when it’s time to start up again).
Tip 3: Use your whiteboard to create a schedule that includes a list of what’s coming down your work pipeline. Include the time these pieces of work will take, and slot them into your schedule according not only to due dates, but “fun factor.” Sandwich tough tasks in between fun ones, so that you start and end strong.
Tip 4: To get started, flush-out a problem, create a timeline, or a storyboard, take your post-it notes and use a wall to place them on. It’s a great exercise to literally see the full picture of the task at-hand. Use what you’ve mapped as your guideline to completing your project/assignment/study-guide.
Tip 5: Celebrate small victories. Time management might mean that you’ll have to adjust your paid work/social schedule a bit in order to get the academic results you want. Make sure that you take a time-out with some kind of reward (a Saturday night Netflix #bingewatch, fun (responsible) night out, Sunday Funday with friends, etc.) to avoid burn-out.