A student guide to managing your deadlines

Managing deadlines and getting your work up to a good standard can be a bit of a new concept when you turn up to university. It is very easy to get carried away with the socials, sport, nightlife and ant other activity you decide to do. So, the best thing to do is to try and find the right balance between it all. Not only this but living with other students can be a little distracting at times, especially when you are trying to study for a deadline.

Continue reading this post to find the best tips and steps you need to know to manage your deadlines at university!

Step 1: Find out when they are

The first step is to find out when all your deadlines are. You will have a range of different modules at university so all the dates will be slightly different. You will need to go onto your online university portal and find each date.

Sometimes your module tutors will have spoken and will try and not put all your deadlines in the same week. However, every now again will might have a few deadlines around the same time. Which can be inconvenient but all you need to do is plan effectively.

Step 2: Write them down

Once you have found all your dates, either get a diary to help you plan your time at university or write down all your deadline details on a piece of paper, so it is all in one place. Try and include a little bit of information with each deadline. Such as if you need to hand it in in person, or if you need to upload it online. If you need to upload it online, you may need to title it something specific.

Step 3: Create a plan

Once you know when all your deadlines are it makes it easier to create a plan. This plan will be based off how many requirements you have for each deadline, what percentage of the module they count towards, and how long it will take you to complete the work.

Prioritise your projects

The best way to go about your plan is to write notes under each deadline based on those 3 categories before you prioritise certain pieces of coursework or revision. When you know, which projects are going to take the longest, you can dedicate more of your time to these

If your deadlines are exams, then you will need to create a revision timetable. This can be created in a similar way to how you would manage coursework deadlines. Remember your tutors are there to help you, tutors usually have an office hour each week so if you do need any further support, use them! Usually if you make effort to go and see your tutor to discuss elements of your assignments, they offer more detail than what you will get in class.

Step 4: Put the plan into action

It is no good spending all your time creating a really good plan if you are not going to follow it. Putting the plan into action can be the hardest bit. But if you have made a good plan then it will be easy enough to follow along. I’ve heard more than enough cases of students putting a detailed plan together then either not sticking to it or spending more time on their plan than their actual assignment.

Top Tips:

Avoid making your schedule too busy

In order to make a good plan you need to make sure you do not overload yourself. You will need to give yourself breaks so that you can refresh before you get going again.

Also, try not to drop anything that you enjoy doing in order to get ahead with your coursework. If you are part of a society that you have fun at then make sure to keep things like this going. Your university offer sports and societies because you should have enough time to fit it all in.

Learn to say no

As I mentioned earlier, it can be extremely hard when starting university, to get caught up with plans and friends. The odd hangover here and there can take a whole day out of your week. Sometimes you need to learn when it is appropriate to say no to plans and priorities your coursework or revision.

Taking note of your questions

When you are making your way through the assignment, any questions you have, not them down. There is nothing worse than arranging to meet your tutor and you have forgotten about what you needed to ask.

Of course, it is useful to ask your friends any little questions, but you should be going to your tutor whenever you need the help. You don’t even need to meet up with them usually a quick email will do which they will try to reply to asap.

Know where the line is

Sometimes students will cross the fine line of asking their friends for too much help. It is not your job to pass an assignment for a friend or another student. Of course, you help friends on coursework when they need help, however help should only be pointing them in the right direction and not giving them the answer.

Collusion is a massive problem at university, and you do not want to be caught out sharing your work with other students who have then just copied it. You will lose your mark just as they will.

Final Thoughts

If you are struggling to complete a deadline and you have a valid reason why, they you can apply for an extension. There is a chance you will not get given the extension; it depends on your circumstances. For example, if you were suffering really badly with CPVID-19 then they would allow you extra time to make up for any you lost.

Always remember that university is not meant to be easy or else everyone would have a degree. If you think you are struggling a little more than your course mates, then you can always reach out to your tutor. Your university may even offer sessions on how best to manage your deadlines which will be specific to your university so make sure you look out for anything like this.