Today's college students are busier than ever before. Tuition hikes and higher cost of living has forced many college students to work part-time jobs in addition to their full-time jobs as students.
In addition to the need to work, college students are also embracing extracurricular activities in an attempt to make themselves stand out in an increasingly competitive post-college job market.
And while that ability to multi-task might prove attractive to prospective employers, it's an ability that many students must actively learn. Time is often a commodity for college students, and managing time effectively can make the difference between a successful student and one who is overwhelmed by stress.
* Learn to prioritize. For some college students, the weekend is the ultimate priority. Though this might be a recipe for fun, it's not a recipe for success. Prioritizing both academic and social commitments is a very important step for students looking to manage time more effectively.
First and foremost, school should be a student's top priority. After studies, it's up to a student to choose what's the next most important priority. This is often very difficult, as colleges typically offer a bevy of activities to students. Socializing is an important aspect of college life, but students must be careful not to place socializing too far up the totem pole of their priorities. When prioritizing, it's best to keep in mind education comes first. Keep school and school-related activities high on the list of priorities.
* Don't over-extend. Many students love college for the very reason that there is so much to do. In an effort to ensure all students make the most of their college experiences, colleges and universities provide many different avenues by which students can express themselves and become a part of the college community's fabric.
However, with all those activities, it's easy for college kids to go overboard and over-commit themselves. Attempting to do too much can lead to feelings of stress and burnout, often resulting in poorer academic performance. When managing time, college students should try to schedule some daily time to relax and take a breather.
* Keep a planner. Daily planners might seem very adult, but they're also very practical. Students with academic, extracurricular and social commitments should write things down in a daily planner to help keep their heads from spinning. Larger things like midterm exams or research papers don't need to be included in a daily planner. But smaller details that tend to get lost in the shuffle should be written down to help students stay on track and make the most of all of their commitments.
* Stay as flexible as possible. While today's busy college students might scoff at the suggestion they stay flexible, flexibility is an important element of time management. Few plans ever go off without a hitch, no matter g how well planned they are. Something unexpected tends to pop up around every corner. By remaining flexible with their time, students are putting themselves in a position to better handle these unexpected surprises-- be it a sickness, a computer crash, car troubles, etc.