With the end of the semester coming up towards us, it is truly the time for students, especially at BCIT, to buckle down. As I’m sure you have realized, each of your instructors has decided to set term project and presentation deadlines and dates within the same week or day (in some instances). Collusion between the teachers? I think so, but either way, here is a list of five things you can do to help yourself survive the end of semester and maybe even come out with some decent grades.
1.) Start ASAP!
No matter what you do, thinking and worrying about it won’t help you, so hop to it! It may be hard to find motivation right now – believe me, I know – but the earlier you start things, the sooner you’ll be done them. I mean, it’s already mid-November… Even if you are not ready to commit major time and effort on an assignment, dedicate 15 minutes to re-reading your project/assignment outlines. By doing this, you’ll probably realize the size of your projects and get started, or at least remind yourself about the scope of them. I’ve found that after I‘ve reminded myself about the details of a project, I find myself thinking about them at random points in my day which leads me to ideas or perspectives I never would’ve thought of before.
2.) Make a List / Schedule
This seems like a pretty standard thing to do when someone has a lot on his or her plate, but believe me, it is beyond effective. Go through your course outline and project descriptions and make a list of everything you have to hand in and study for with their corresponding dates. After, go through that list and take note of anything that needs looking at in advance and assign those an earlier date. Finally list all these tasks in chronological order. Note: also try adding in other important dates that are work/personal life related.
3.) Study Breaks
We must all know by now that, in most cases, studying or working on something for 2 hours straight is unproductive; you’ll find yourself creeping social media, messaging friends, or just losing interest and concentration. Taking these short breaks isn’t a bad thing (not the best thing when totally unproductive either) but the problem here is letting these ‘short’ breaks into 30 minute occasions. In the end, if you plan to take a 5/10 minute break every 30 minutes, you can manage it all a lot easier. I do this, and even use my phone’s timer to implement it for myself and in group meetings sometimes.
4.) Set Goals
Nothing will motivate you like seeing comparing where you currently stand, marks wise, in your classes with where you want or need to be. If this shows that you have some major work ahead of you, set a reward or incentive for your hard work when it’s all done and over with. On the other hand, if you are doing well, this could show that you don’t need to be as stressed as you are.
5.) Take Care
As always, taking care of yourself is a part of achieving any success. The right amount of rest, healthy food, activity, and water will help you feel like you are ready to take on anything. Getting sick around the end of semester is not ideal as putting in long hours in the library or at the desk will seem even more daunting and less ideal.
At the end of the day, these are some starting points to prepare yourself for the next three weeks. Just remember that the end is in sight and winter break will be here before we know it!