To be successful at studying, you must be able to plan your time wisefully. It’s just not possible to read all your books a day before the exam, watch all the recorded classes and make all the rehearsal exams. By making a planning you make sure you divide every task in smaller tasks, which you will do in a specific order and in a set amount of time.
It’s not very easy though to make a good planning. To start with, you need a list of all the tasks you must and want to do in the period you want to plan. It is most efficient to make a list of all these tasks and their deadlines. Include all the exams, assignments, papers, obligatory classes and readings and important dates. If you get the idea that your list isn’t complete, you can get in contact with your professor’s, teachers or classmates. Because only if every due-date and task is clear to you, you can make a good planning.
Long term planning
The planning of your study is not only depending on your study, but also on everything else you have to do from day to day. It’s all about the ‘what’ (the information you need to learn) and the ‘when’ (the time). How much time is there available and how much time do you need to do something, study something or create something. You can divide this up into a short term planning and a long term planning. First make the long term planning. This will be your overview which includes all the deadlines and dates of your exams. These are the real ‘musts’ that you can not miss! You could write these dates in a monthly calendar.
Example study planning (long term)
Monday the 2th of April: obligatory class Business Research Methods (BRM)
Monday the 9th of April: reading BRM with quiz for bonus credits
Wednesday the 11th of April: deadline, hand in assignment 1 BRM
Monday the 23th of April: exam BRM
Short term planning
As the next step you can make a short term planning, which is a more elaborate and specific version of the long term planning. You make an individual planning for every day and you really have to do this in an honest and realistic way. For instance, you can plan that you are going to read 100 pages in 2 hours. But if you have experienced that you can read about 20 pages per hour, this planning won’t work out. So, it’s most important that you plan realistic, besides that there are a few more requirements for the best short term planning:
- Don’t plan every minute to minute, you sometimes need a break to relax and process all the information.
- Your planning includes more than studying only. Also schedule your Netflix-hours, sports, relaxing, taking a nap, etc.
- Don’t make a planning for everyday, so don’t plan every day of the week. Sometimes you need a day off. Only when you don’t tell yourself that you need to do something, you can really relax and enjoy your spare time.
- Keep room for flexibility in your planning and leave some time open in between activities.
- Stay on top of your planning: if you notice that some tasks take more time than planned, update your planning. Otherwise you will never be able to follow your planning and this will be frustrating.
Example study planning (short term)
Monday the 2nd of April
10:00-12:00 - Business Research Methods college
12:00-13:30 - Lunchtime, relax
13:30-14:30 - Chapter 1 reading (page 0-25)
15:00-16:30 - Going to the gym
19:00-20:00 - Read summary chapter 1, make practise questions