You should now have a solid understanding of the tools and techniques that can be used in managing your time as a graduate student. Your assignment this week is to develop a plan that you will use to help you stay on track throughout the week. You will list the resources that you feel could be beneficial in your growth as a graduate student.
The requirements below must be met for your paper to be accepted and graded:
References must come from sources such as, scholarly journals found in EBSCOhost, CNN, online newspapers such as, The Wall Street Journal, government websites, etc. Sources such as, Wikis, Yahoo Answers, eHow, blogs, etc. are not acceptable for academic writing.
A detailed explanation of how to cite a source using APA can be found here (link).
Download an example here.
In addition to utilizing a calendar to help organize your daily tasks, it is important that you do not overload yourself with too many commitments. As a graduate student, you will have a significant amount of reading and research to do. Having the tools available to ensure that you are able to conduct this reading and research will be important. Take the time to set aside time on a daily basis to ensure that you stay on track of your studies. You want to avoid waiting until the last 24-48 hours of the course week to get started on your assignments. Be proactive. Read ahead in your classes to see what you will be working on. Review the syllabus and plan out your term. You will be happy you did.
Learn what tools are available to you. Many people like Evernote (https://evernote.com/) and Things (http://culturedcode.com/). Both of these tools are useful in helping to improve productivity. There are many more that are out on the web that are free to use. There are others that are pay-for apps for your computer or smartphone. Regardless of what you choose, be sure that the tool is beneficial to you. Every student has a different need for tools, so take the time to research the one you feel is best suited for you.
As mentioned many times before, a lot is going to be asked of you as a graduate student. You will want to find a spot that is comfortable and quiet as you conduct your studies. If you are working in public, it is often helpful to have your earphones in your ears even if you are not actually listening to anything through them. The reason for this is that earphones can function as earplugs that will filter out noise and promote concentration. If you do not have earphones, invest in earplugs. Having earphones in your ears in public will also prevent others from interrupting you as they will assume you are listening to something and in concentration mode.
Now that you have a plan in place, a schedule to follow, and tools for organizing, it is time to schedule some downtime. This is one of the most difficult tasks as a graduate student, especially if you are working and have other obligations to attend to. However, this is also a very important task to work into your routine. Graduate students are notorious for being exhausted and overextended. Do not let this be you! Instead, be sure to allow yourself enough downtime in your schedule as it will cultivate creativity and will also increase your productivity. To do this, be sure that you get enough sleep. Do not spend time pulling all-nighters in order to get your assignments completed. Instead, be sure to schedule your sleep into your plan. You should aim for a minimum of seven hours per night. Anything less will cripple your creativity, memory retention, and productivity.
Make time throughout your day to move around. Exercise is important in keeping a healthy body and a healthy mind. Get up and move around once every hour. Eat healthy and limit sugar in your diet. Though you may want to overindulge in sweets and caffeine, you may want to eliminate this habit and look to healthy snacks and drinks that will promote energy.
Remember to reward yourself. You have learned this term about setting goals, making a plan, and working towards your success. As a part of this, remember to reward yourself. Taking the time to still do the things you love will help you stay motivated throughout your graduate studies.
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