Students blog

Explore the latest trends, tips, and experiences in college life in this blog written by fellow students.

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    Graduation Goals: Finishing Your Academic Journey Stress Free

    Carmen Bullock

    As the academic journey winds to a close, some students experience anxiety at the idea of the unknown.  Like a runner closing in on the last lap of a marathon, it is time to appreciate the work you have finished and propel to the finish line.  However, as the graduate coordinates graduation celebrations along with balancing classwork  and other demands, the stress can cause elevated strain.  Here are some of my favorite anxiety-coping techniques that can help the graduate enjoy the final part of this academic journey.

    Write out your goals and plans on a vision board

    Having a visual chart to what you want to carry out throughout the year and beyond helps clear your mind of distractions.  By structuring good time management skills and dedicated activity toward each element on the vision board, you can visualize success. Seeing the board components and your progress marks the measurement of how close you are to reaching the goals.

    Embrace options outside your parameters of study

    Throughout your academic journey you began the process of specialization through your major. Now you must be able to exercise flexibility when reaching out to the workforce.  To broaden your career prospects, envision how other industries could use your abilities.  Keep in mind there are probably a variety of paths that could lead to your dream position.  When job search anxiety emerges, try to hold on to your focus, but see if other industries could use your talents.

    Just breathe

    Remembering to pause or meditate offers you moments of clarity.  Finding a pace or rhythm allows you to ease through the final months and tampers down the tension that can creep up when many items demand attention.  Finding a calm inner peace gives your efforts more clarity and more details as you are more assured.  

    These techniques enable graduates to handle rising anxiety that can complicate the enjoyment of their final year.  Setting clear goals and aspirations steers you to transform anxiety in a productive mode.  When doubt and frustration lingers, use visualization imagery to keep moving towards your goals.  This helps you see opportunities to use your learned skills in a new and exciting way.  Lastly, don’t forget to breathe and take stock of present events.  By focusing on the present and steadying your breath, clarity steadies and balances you as you continue to the finish line – graduation!

    How do you ease the tension of graduation rapidly approaching? Share when you retweet my blog!

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    Effective Time Management Advice: Time flies when you?re a student!

    Carmen Bullock

    When engaged in activities that truly interest or excite, time seems to slip away quickly.  Being a student comes with many responsibilities such as class attendance,  study sessions, campus activities, work, family life and most of all – your own independent life.  Effective time management creates space for you to encompass many, if not all tasks, and supports a centered lifestyle.  With the implementation of a few strategies, effective time management empowers you to approach any task with confidence.  I have found these five strategies help master the rigors of time while working toward a balanced work-life balance.

    Let the long-term goal be the focal point of an activity

    Whether at the beginning, middle, or end of the semester, the overall goal to learn the information and apply learned knowledge for future situations directs your drive or motivation to prioritize items that need more time and focus.   

    Make a priority list

    When confronted with many tasks and a short amount of time, a to-do list with items listed by priority helps you to maximize your available time and to organize your thoughts on how to carry out the list.   

    Set realistic time constraints for each step of a larger task

    For example, if a paper is due at the end of the week, here’s an example of how to break down each step and apply a time constraint.

    1. Form an outline – ten to twenty (10 – 20) minutes
    2. Write the rough draft – three (3) hours
    3. Edit, rewrite, proofread – two (2) hours
    4. Write final draft and reread for final clarity – one (1) hour.  

    Setting time limits for each item helps to manage time and not feel overwhelmed.

    Reward yourself!  

    When creating to-do lists and time constraints, include areas of fun and/or interest. For instance, if you enjoy reading books, listening to music, gaming, playing sports, connecting with social media, spending time with family and friends, etc., these activities can be highlighted on your to-do list as a reward for completing tasks. This gives you a measure to achieve amid the long-term goal. The incentives help to motivate you and keep a balanced flow of learning.

    Set boundaries

    Sometimes you just have to say“No.”  You must learn how to exercise boundaries and limits.  For example, if you need to spend more time reading a specific chapter to grasp the concepts, but your friends want to go to a movie –  this a conflicted priority.  You may need to say “no” and/or offer an alternative time to go out.  The suggestion of other options allows for understanding, flexibility, and focus.  The long-term goal must come first.  

    ‘Time flies when you are having fun,’ as the adage goes.  As a student, the learning process can be fun as well.  A few effective time management tools give you the flexibility to enjoy the process and your own life to a fuller extent.  Having a clear long-term goal, listing tasks in order of priority, setting time limits for the items, incorporating interesting incentives throughout the list, and setting boundaries on time allow you to embrace the challenges of student life and balance  it with work, social, and family life. 

    How do you effectively manage your time? Please share with the Pearson Students community when you retweet this blog!


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    Play Hard, Work Hard: How to balance extracurricular activities with academics

    Carmen Bullock

    College students can take advantage of a variety of extracurricular activities to enhance life outside the classroom. Participation in clubs and organizations allows you to meet and network with others. It can also play a key role in your college experience.  The demands of an extracurricular active life can add pressure as you balance school, work, and life responsibilities.  Keeping a few tips in mind can offer you tools to meet extra pressure and enjoy the totality of being a college student.  


    As the excitement to become involved pulls at your time, a strong time-management plan strengthens your ability to be active and still meet your other responsibilities.  Set priorities to create an effective management system to optimize your experience.   Some activities may conflict with study sessions or work schedules.  Weighing the importance of your priorities and measuring your desire to participate can direct how to make the most of your available time.  Implementing a ranking system helps you see the level of importance to you.  

    Reflect on your activity

    Consider what you want to gain from extracurricular involvement and keep those goals in mind when you are participating in any activity.  If the activity is an opportunity to socialize, use the time to engage others and offer input.  If the activity is for relaxation and/or recreation, enjoy the moment so you reduce stress.  If the activity’s purpose will bolster your network contacts, remain engaged and seek out the information that can help your goals.  

    Excel in class

    Since your schedule allowed the activities to be a part of your life, the diversion from course work can alleviate stress.  With a lighter frame of mind, focusing on your studies during the appointed time eases the pressure that your workload demands.  Staying persistent with your time awareness and self-checks of health, diet, and sleep should pay off throughout the semester.  If you keep in mind that you control your time, you can make adjustments during difficult moments.

    With so many opportunities to take part in college, it can be easy to push coursework to the side. A solid time management plan is the best way to balance all areas to make the most of your experience.  A plan that is adjustable allows for you to master your ability to multi-task while dedicating time to your studies.  Striving to achieve balance between what you’re learning inside the classroom and what you can gain through extracurriculars will enhance your entire college experience. Get out there and join in!

    How do you prioritize activities and coursework? Share when you retweet my blog!