Entering a graduate program is exciting, but it can also be a little overwhelming. The new demands on your time mean that you need to rethink your schedule to ensure that you can concentrate on your coursework. Because many graduate students also have jobs and other outside responsibilities, time management is a critical part of success. Here are some tips for tackling your schedule and managing your commitments.
Use a Calendar
You can’t stay on top of your schedule if you don’t have a plan. Use a calendar system to keep track of all of your obligations, so that you never miss a study group meeting or appointment with your professor. Use whatever system works best for you, from your smartphone scheduler to a paper pocket calendar. The format isn’t as important as actually using the calendar. Don’t forget to put long-term due dates in your calendar as well, such as financial aid deadlines.
Make a Daily To-Do List
Creating a daily to-do list will help you stay on task and will reduce some of the stress you feel about all of the demands you’re facing. By crossing items off your list, you’ll get the satisfaction of seeing the progress you’re making. Be sure to include time in your day for unexpected things that may need your attention.
Prioritize Your Tasks
You may have a lot of things you need to get done each day, but not every task has the same amount of urgency. Do the things that are most pressing first, and leave the tasks that can wait until later in the day. Doing things lets you get over the stress of your most important tasks and gives you the flexibility to shift less essential work to another day, if necessary.
In a graduate program in Seattle University’s College of Science and Engineering, you’ll find supportive faculty, advisors, and peers who will support you throughout your education. Could a graduate degree in computer science or software engineering be right for you? Contact an admissions counselor at (888) 457-5227 to find out more about our programs.