Guilty of leaving assignments to the last minute? You’re not alone! But if you’re sick of staying up all night revising for exams or writing essays that are due the next day, using a study planner to master the art of time management offers an easier pathway to academic success.
Here’s how to make a study plan that actually works, so you can enjoy uni life and graduate with a high GPA.
Find Your Learning Style
Not sure how to create a study plan that caters for your specific needs? Identifying your learning style is an important part of this process. The more you know about how your brain works, the more easily you’ll be able to put together an effective study plan.
- Visual learners tend to be good at drawing and often remember things more easily when they have images to help them process information. If you think you may be a visual learner, techniques like colour-coding could help you create a suitable study plan.
- You might be a logical learner if you’re more comfortable with numbers. Logical learners often classify groups of information together in order to make sense of them. They’re good at problem solving using formulas and procedures, making them well-suited to digital study plans.
- You could be a social learner if you thrive in group settings. Rather than trying to suppress your natural learning style, try and fit plenty of collaborative learning opportunities into your study schedule and design it in a shareable format.
Regardless of how you process information, every student can benefit from creating a study planner. The trick is to make sure it works for your preferred learning style.
An effective study timetable should map out your academic journey several months in advance. Start every semester at uni by writing down when you have exams and assignments, then plan the rest of your life around those key dates.
Be sure to put regular reminders in your planner about upcoming assessments to avoid being caught off-guard. Balancing your studies with your social life and other commitments can make life at uni feel scattered, which is why it’s so important to get a clear idea of when you really need to start prioritising your uni work.
Allowing plenty of time to get your work done well before it’s due means you won’t have to deal with the stress of meeting last-minute deadlines. Planning ahead is also a valuable skill for life beyond uni, so you might as well get the hang of it now.
Different Types of Study Planners
From handwritten diaries to excel spreadsheets, study planners can be effective in various formats. Choosing the right one is key to breaking bad study habits, as you’re more likely to stick with a study timetable that complements your schedule.
These are some of the most effective study planners for uni students:
- Daily study planner – If you really want to compartmentalise your academic life, consider using a daily study planner. With lots of room for notes, this style of planner helps you take uni life one day at a time while still allowing you to look ahead.
- Weekly Study Planner – Designed to display an entire week, a weekly study planner breaks down your schedule into 7-day blocks.
- Monthly study planner – Providing a broad overview of your schedule, a monthly study planner offers a glimpse into the immediate future.
- Online planner – Online planners allow for flexibility and can be programmed to send you reminders. Excel, Outlook and Evernote are some of the most popular platforms for creating study schedules.
Getting organised at uni can be a gradual process, so don’t be discouraged if it takes time to develop the habit of planning out your studies. With time and practice, you’ll come to rely on your study planner.