You will find that as a student there are lots of competing pressures on your time. Remember there are only 24 hours in a day and finding time to sleep is important. How do you get the most out of your studies, explore Imperial's societies and sports, and still find time to make friends and explore London?

Tips for managing your time

Students in a classroom The key to effective time management is having a good overview of your workload and being able to prioritise your time effectively. Here are a few tips for helping you to manage your time:

  • Keep a to do list
  • Prioritise important work
  • Make a note of deadlines
  • Manage distractions and procrastination
  • Know your limits
  • Don't take on too many tasks

(adapted from MindTools 10 Common Time Management Mistakes)

Action planning

Think of an action plan as an expanded to-do list. First, write a list of all the tasks that you need to complete. Next, develop an action plan by assessing how long each task will take and giving each task (or stage) a deadline for completion.

Action plans can cover hours, to weeks, months or years. They only take a few minutes to construct but will be invaluable in helping you plan your time. With practice, it becomes easier to break down an activity into manageable tasks, and accurately estimate the time needed to complete them. However, you should always be realistic; be wary of allowing too short a time which will only result in your missing deadlines, or too much time which is simply a waste.

Prioritise your workload

This can be as simple as looking at your action plan and highlighting the work that is urgent, or ordering the work in order of deadline or importance. We tend to focus on work that is easy to do, and postpone the work that takes more time and thought. Be aware of this when prioritising your tasks.