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Got a minute? Take advantage of time management clinics and tips

Concordia’s Student Success Centre has the tools to keep you on track
January 12, 2017
By J. Latimer


Too much to do and not enough time? Are you sure about that?

Consider attending Concordia’s next drop-in time management clinic. It will be held on Thursday, January 19, between 1 and 4 p.m., and again on Friday, January 20, between 9:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. at the Math and Learning Lab (H-460) in the Henry F. Hall Building. Bring your student ID card.

“The number-one need for students is time management,” says Juliet O’Neill Dunphy, manager of Student Learning Services, part of the Student Success Centre, which helped close to 1,600 students organize their schedules last year via workshops, clinics or individual appointments.

No need to struggle

Exercise science student Jerry Dzindzio credits the Student Success Centre for getting him organized.

“I was really struggling with three courses and working part time,” he says. “But I learned to break up my reading assignments into smaller, more manageable chunks. I also learned to get enough sleep so that I could wake up earlier to read without distractions.”

Carving out study time

The drop-in clinic is designed to assess if students have enough study time in their current schedule. The drop date for courses is after the clinic, on January 22, 2017.

“We help students fill out a semester planner and a finding-time grid, then these are reviewed with a learning specialist to see if it’s a realistic workload,” says Laura Mitchell, director of the Student Success Centre.

For Jodi Kazanel, an anthropology student, meeting with a learning specialist allowed her to prioritize and plan ahead.

“I have learned how to designate time for the important aspects of my life, studying in appropriate chunks of time,” says Kazanel. “I’m also aware that travel and social time are important and necessary to fit into my schedule.”

5 tips, tools and strategies

Here are some ways to improve your time management.

1. Use the Writing Assignment Calculator

“This is a fantastic tool! Plug in your assignment’s due date and it will take you through eight steps to hit your deadline,” says O’Neill Dunphy. “Each step has a guide, and we plan to further customize the content for specific disciplines.”

2. Fill out the handy planners and grids

“The Winter 2017 Semester Planner and the Finding Time to Study Grid are basic tools to help students keep track of how they spend their time,” says Mitchell. “Everyone can download them from the Student Success Centre’s website, under Learning Support.”

3. Download an app

“There are several apps out there to help students become better organized, so pick one you like,” says O’Neill Dunphy. “I’ve looked at several of them and My Study Life, for example, has everything you need. Plus, it’s free.”

4. Think beyond the current week

“Keep an agenda that shows you the entire semester,” says Mitchell. “Otherwise, if you only look at the current week, you might turn the page in your planner and see four mid-term exams or papers due. Think long term.”

5. Learn strategically

“If you’re pressed for time, it helps to know a few learning strategies,” says O’Neill Dunphy. “For example, read to get the essentials of an article or chapter, rather than trying to memorize every word — and try to review what you’ve learned within 24 hours, so it moves into long-term memory. Otherwise, you lose 50 per cent of that knowledge. It also helps to talk about what you’ve learned — put words to ideas. If you want to find out more tips, come to one of our learning strategy workshops.”

Attend one of Concordia’s two drop-in time management clinics at the Math and Learning Lab (Room H-460) in the Henry F. Hall Building (1455 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W.) on the Sir George Williams Campus.

The first one is on Thursday, January 19, between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. The second is on Friday, January 20, between 9:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. Bring your student ID card.

Try the Writing Assignment Calculator and take advantage of Concordia’s Learning Support for students. For a full list of upcoming workshops, including time management sessions for business, science, engineering and computer science students, consult this schedule.


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