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Time Management

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Time Management

Time management is something that many college students struggle with. Even older adults in their professional careers do too! It can be a life-long challenge but there are a number of ways to maximize your time, stay on track, or stop procrastinating.

What works for one person may not work for another. Try some of the suggestions and tools on this page and find a strategy that works best for you.

Time Management Tips

  • Maximize your time and energy
    • Use your peak hours efficiently to tackle.
      big tasks and projects
    • Set up appointments with professors, tutors, librarians so that you get the clarity you need or a head start on the work.
  • Break up large tasks into smaller tasks
  • Avoid multi-tasking
  • Make to-do lists
  • Use a calendar
    • Estimate how much time tasks will take and block the time for classes, studying, projects, office hours you want to attend, and also all your recreational activities too.
    • Prioritize deadlines.
    • Allow for some flexibility.
    • Avoid over scheduling yourself.
  • Prioritize what/who gets your energy. It's okay to say "no" sometimes
  • Minimize distractions from your workspace
    • Ex: find a suitable study space, silence devices, put phone on airplane mode/do not disturb, close any chat pop-ups or email.
  • Consider moving around. Perhaps one study spot is best for a certain type of work versus another. Or tell yourself that you will sit in x seat to do x project and when complete move to another area to your next project.
  • Breaks are important!
    • Nap, stretch, exercise, read a book, attend campus event


Here are just SOME suggestions:

  • Handwritten lists and calendars
  • Google Calendar
  • Google Keep (Google Keep is a side bar tool on Google Calendar)
  • Asana
  • Trello (very good for collaborative work too)
  • Notability
  • Kanban Method - The post-it note system
  • Pomodoro Method - a productivity method for staying focused and avoiding multi-tasking
    • Encourages short bursts of manageable chunks of work with breaks built in between.
    • With this method, you work for 25-minutes sessions separated by five-minute breaks. After every four or five Pomodoros (think of these as work sessions), you indulge in a more extended break for 15-20 minutes.
      • 3 Rules to the Pomodoro Technique
        • Break down complex projects
          • If a task takes more than 4 Pomodoro intervals it
            must be broken down to smaller steps
        • Small tasks go together
          • If the task takes less than the Pomodoro,
            combine it with other simple tasks such
            as “set a reminder”
        • Once a Pomodoro is set, it must ring
          • The Pomodoro cannot be broken. Do
            not check emails, texts, social media,
      • NEW: The Library is offering this method as part of the "Guided Study Sessions" every Sunday evening in the fall semester, starting 9/17. View the Library events page.
  • Make appointments! Scheduling these (and showing up) will ensure that you are getting started on tasks or perhaps even getting work done in preparation for them. Here are some appointments you may want to set when you get assignments or have important academic tasks ahead:
    • With your Professors or Dean's office (or use their office hours)
    • Mentors/advisors
    • Tutors- Writing Center, Math Center, Science Center are all located in the Library. Other subject tutoring may be shared in class, Life@Fairfield (log in to view all content), or via email (so make sure you check it).
    • Research Librarians - They can help you with brainstorming topics, strategies and keywords, finding quality sources, citation help.
    • With your peers or solo. Reserve a study room and set a goal for what you will accomplish in that space. If the study rooms are all booked you can use the Collaboratories on the lower level past the book stacks.