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Academic Learning Center

Time Management Tips

Do you constantly feel as if there aren’t enough hours in the day? Is it surprising to hear there are 168 hours in a week? Think about how many of those hours are spent sleeping, watching Netflix, and browsing social media. What about time spent on academics? For each credit hour, you should expect 2 hours of homework outside of the class! Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry--we’re here to help!

First Things, First: Manage your Academic Time

More often than not, school should come first. As U.S. News writer Kelci Lucier states,

Even though you may have a million other things going on, it's important to remind yourself why you're in college in the first place: to graduate. Consequently, your academic work should always come first when it comes to prioritizing your time.

When looking at your schedule for the week, figure out what your academic commitments look like. What time do you have classes? How much homework do you have to do? What assignments are due? When do you have major exams or quizzes?

If you need to, work backward: If you have an exam on Friday and think you need 3 hours to study for it, block off an hour on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday for study time. And keep those appointments with yourself just like you would anything else on your calendar.

Make use of time management resources like Google Calendar, calendar apps on your smartphone or device, a traditional paper-and-pen planner, or our 168 Hours Worksheet. Prioritize your assignments for the week, write down what you need to get done in order of importance, and keep at it. Check it off when you get it done--it will make a huge difference!


Second: Manage Your Personal Time

Of course your education is important, but college is more than just tests and assignments. Kelci Lucier points out the importance of having fun too!

It's an unrealistic expectation to think that you can study, go to class, and work all day, every day. Your brain needs a break, too! Make sure to allow yourself time to go to something fun in the quad, attend a meeting for your favorite club, and just hang out for an hour or so at night with friends over dinner.

When looking at your calendar, write in your personal commitments and make sure to leave some time for just hanging out. But make sure to put in start and stop times, too; knowing that you need to start studying at 9 p.m. on Wednesday, for example, will allow you to have some fun with friends early in the evening but also get your homework done.

The key to effective time management is organization! If you struggle with this area, or feel like you need additional help, our office doors are open and appointments can be easily made! Call us at 319-273-6023 or come directly to us in the ITTC, Room 008, to schedule! Let us help you!


Lucier, Kelci. “Learn to manage your Time in College” retrieved from:

--Article by Kiona Rolfes