Disclaimer: I'm a little bit of a nerd. I like learning, and school, and sticky notes, and notebooks, and planners, and.... you get the point. Starting college this fall meant that I had the opportunity to research different organizational and study methods to figure out what would work best for me because I wasn't going to be able to use quite the same systems that worked for me when I was homeschooled. Since you
Keeping track of all your assignments and to-do's can be one of the biggest challenges in college. Unless you're professor is constantly reminding you about when things are due, you have to know your syllabus and keep track of everything yourself. I've found it extremely helpful to have a visual of what I need to do each month, week, and day and have different methods for each that all work together. First, at the beginning of the semester I copied all of my assignments from my syllabus into my calendar. I know this seems like a lot of work but it took me less than 2 hours, I watched tv while doing it, and it's saved me a ton of time this semester.
At the beginning of each month, I transfer the tests and major assignments (essays, projects, etc.) to the whiteboard over my desk so I can easily see what's coming up.
At the beginning of each week (usually Sunday night), I plan out how I'm going to divide up all the work that's due and make a plan for the week. I got this notepad in the dollar aisle at Target and it was a great find. I've seen different variations of this since then at Target, but you can also find notepads like this on Amazon, such as this one. Or you can just write it down on a plain piece of paper if you don't feel like being so fancy ;)
Finally, there's my system for daily planning. I'm a to-do list girl, checking boxes is extremely satisfying, which is why a bullet journal works best for me. If you've never heard of bullet journaling, a quick google search will give you tons of information (bulletjournal.com), but here's the basics/my bullet journal. (Disclaimer: mine is super artsy because I'm into that sort of thing, but yours can be very basic and will be just as useful) Before I get into my daily spreads, this is how the beginning of my bullet journal is set up...
I use a large squared black Moleskine but you can use whatever kind of notebook works best for you. I just like the size of this notebook and I like graph paper, which is why I chose this one.
Each day, or more often the night before, I will transfer all of my school assignments from my weekly plan into my bullet journal, as well as anything else I have to do, using the corresponding color. So basically, what I end up with is one big consolidated to-do list that I carry with me everywhere instead of a bunch of random papers.
Because I always have my bullet journal with me, it's a helpful catch all for other information too. I have a page that I record my times on the rowing machine, a page for blog post ideas, and I use the inside front cover to hold sticky notes of other random lists/reminders.
Some people also create a monthly calendar in their bullet journal instead of having a separate planner/calendar but I prefer to use both, it's just whatever works best for you.
My bullet journal, combined with this planning system has been a life saver this semester in keeping me organized. If you have any questions be sure to leave a comment and I will make sure to answer them :) Also stay tuned for the next installments of this post series which will be on time management and test prep. If you have any questions you want me to address in those posts, also leave a comment below. I hope this was helpful for you!
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