Time Management and Organization

Goals of Time Management

Good time management skills are essential to achieving your goals, use the information below to reflect on the prior semester(s), learn and review time management skills, and practice these skills to help you reach your goals.

Goals of Time Management

  • Prioritize Activities
  • Reduce Stress

Let's look at each of these goals in more detail.

Prioritize activities

Most people are busy. How do you decide when to do things, where to go, and who to see? Time management.

Sometimes we can multitask and take care of two or more things at one time. Some people can even handle several tasks at once. It is important to know yourself and adjust your workload appropriately.

It is up to you to prioritize your activities. Successful students place a high priority on their classes, but they do not neglect other aspects of their college experience.

"Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least."― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Reduce stress

Stress is our body's natural reaction to outside influences. A certain amount of stress helps each of us function throughout our normal daily activities. When we experience stress levels higher than we can successfully manage,even simple things become a challenge. What is one method of successfully coping with stress? Time management.

Staying organized in your responsibilities is one of the main ways you can reduce your stress level. Think of a time when you felt like you had no control over a situation because you were unprepared for it. Now, think of a time when you felt like you were in complete control of the situation because you were fully prepared. Did you feel less pressure or stress when you felt you were in control of the situation? What was the main difference? Most times the feeling of control over a situation comes from managing your time as you prepare for it.

Categories of Time Demands

  • Activities that MUST be included in your schedule
  • Activities that CAN be included in your schedule
  • Activities that can be EXCLUDED from your schedule

The graphic below pulls together information researched by BYU and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine to show how successful students optimize their time.

How would your chart compare? What are the differences?
Optimal Time Spent (hours per week) pie chart

Using a Syllabus & Planner

  • Store your teacher's contact information in your planner/phone
    • Instructors Name
    • Phone number
    • Email address
    • Office Hours
  • Enter these items in your planner (booklet, phone calendar, etc.)
    • Find the schedule of activities within each class syllabus
    • Locate all exams, assignments, papers, projects and the associated due dates
    • For each item, add a reminder in your planner
    • Exam - at least 5 days prior
    • Assignment, paper - at least 3 days prior
  • Make note of the scheduled final exam day and time and location. You can view your Final Exam Schedule in My Missouri State.