By Nicole (3rd Year Language and Literature BA) and Humaira (2nd Year English Literature BA)
The end of the semester is never a fun time. With deadlines and exams coming up, this is always one of the most stressful times for students. These are our top ten tips for managing revision and deadlines!
- Make sure you keep a timetable or a diary to keep everything organised!
Juggling multiple deadlines can be stressful. By keeping a timetable on hand to keep track of your deadlines and record progress, you’ll keep stress at bay.
You probably don’t have enough time to make it to the gym or have the strength to get there. But just taking a walk around your neighbourhood will make a huge difference. The endorphin rush will make help you relax and you’ll be returning to your work energised and full of new ideas.
- Get some sleep.
Okay, the thing students are best at is sleep. It’s good for you and will help you de-stress! So avoid the inevitable revision all-nighters! When you sleep your body has time to recover. When you’re stressed, get some rest.
- See your friends.
Your friends are the enjoyable and fun people in your life. So what better way to de-stress than to chat over a cup of coffee (or a cocktail, if needed) and forget all your worries for a couple of hours. And there is no shortage of great coffee around Regent Street. In need of coffee inspiration (or a good revision spot)? Check out our guide to coffee around campus: https://uniwestminsterenglish.com/2017/02/25/english-students-guide-to-coffee-around-regent-street-campus/
- Do something not related to your course or assignments.
Revision might not seem like the time for procrastination. But taking your mind off work from time to time will make you more productive in the long run. You could google a funny video, listen to some music, read a book, or make some food. Anything that will help take your mind off the stress!
- Know when your deadlines are.
Deadlines tend to all be around the same time, so it’s important to know just when each one is; there’s nothing worse than thinking you have an extra week to get an assignment done, just to find out that it’s due tomorrow. So whether you have a calendar, a diary, or even both with your deadlines and due dates clearly marked out, make sure you check it on a regular basis (and congratulate yourself on your amazing organisation skills when you get all your work in on time)!
- Allocate yourself a set period of time to work on each assignment.
For each assignment, give yourself a set time with a set day where you start the assignment and a set day when it should be finished, so you can move on to the next one. You might even give yourself mini deadlines to have certain parts of your assignment completed. By breaking each assignment up like this and allocating yourself specific periods of time to focus on each one, you’ll have enough time to make sure each piece of work is done on time and no work is rushed and last minute.
- Prioritise your work.
If you leave it quite late to start your assignments and then all of your deadlines come at once, the only way to get through is to keep on top of them all. For example, say you have 3 deadlines over 2 weeks, you have to prioritise and see which ones require more focus and perhaps more research to be done and which ones you can start later.
- Having said that, don’t leave it too late to start your work.
If you have multiple deadlines coming all at once (which, as a student, you probably will at some point), you do not want to be doing all-nighters too often just to make sure you meet each one. Be sure to give yourself plenty of time for each assignment and start before the due date, so you have time to fully research and then edit your work (yes, you will need to edit your essay – it might seem amazing and ready to go at 4 am after 12 cups of coffee, but we can guarantee you will find plenty of typos, referencing errors, etc. after you had sme sleep).
- Last but not least, take it one day at a time.
You have all of these deadlines coming up, you’ve given yourself mini deadlines and you have so much to do. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. But instead of panicking, procrastinating and delaying the work, focus on one day at a time. Try getting as much as possible done each day. You should still be aware of when your deadlines are, but instead of thinking “I have 3 deadlines in the next 3 weeks”, think of it as “today I have a full day to do as much as I can on assignment X” and you’ll see the difference it makes.
To all of our students with approaching deadlines, good luck! You’ll all do a fantastic job!