Many people choose online education because they have many demands on their time. As such, it is important to become a master of time management if you plan to succeed in your online degree program. If you are like many online students, you will already be balancing work, family, and school, so you need to make your education as convenient and streamlined as possible to avoid becoming overstressed and burned out. Follow these simple tips to manage your time effectively and to stay on top of your studies:
- Plan by the week – Take 10-15 minutes at the beginning of every week to look over upcoming assignments and test dates. Plan out chunks of study time throughout the week that will allow you to get all of your work done without being in a crunch at the last minute. If you have a smartphone, there are many great apps that will keep track of your due dates, send you reminders, and even help you schedule out the time needed to study.
- Set up a study zone – Keep all of your online class materials in one place. Ideally, you should have a desk on which you can keep your notes, works in progress, study tools, and other materials. Keep everything organized in binders by class and date so you can easily find what you need without wasting valuable time on a wild goose chase. If you plan on working away from home, pack everything you need into a bag the night before so you won’t forget during the morning rush.
- Multitask – While you are commuting to work, waiting at the doctor’s office, or on your lunch hour, listen to course lecture podcasts, review your notes, brainstorm for a project, or get in some assigned reading. For an online student, multitasking can take a lot of stress out of life.
- Travel with your laptop – Any time you find yourself with some free time, pull out the laptop and check in with your classes, upload assignments, or study. This will free up time later to spend with friends or family.-
- Form partnerships – Team up with others in your online classes to make studying easier. Set up regular appointments to study via chat or Skype and divide difficult reading assignments into chunks with each member condensing important points and creating notes to be shared with the group.
Starting an online degree program adds even more responsibility to an already full life. By managing your time wisely, you can get all of your work done and excel in your studies without overstressing yourself.