Having just started my second year (BA (Hons) Fine Art and Art History), I thought I would share with you my experience of dealing with the workload at uni and what I do to try and keep on top of my work. Although my degree is 100% coursework based (so no exams, yaaay!), it does mean that my coursework deadlines all come at once. So here’s how I try and stay organised to make sure I get everything done!
1. Weekly planners and lists.
I’m definitely that person that makes a list of everything – i.e. a list of a list! Balancing two different subjects, I find it best to have an ongoing list for each one so I know what I need to do and by when. I have a lot of free time from my course, so I use the weekly planner to write down what I’m going to do in that time to make sure I do it. Whether this is being in the studio, the library, relaxing at home, shopping or going to a fitness class. Write it down and cross it off!
2. Prioritise the things you have to do.
What I mean by this is that uni can be overwhelming at times, and you’ll be told about lots of things you need to do: both for the near future (i.e. reading for tomorrows lecture, or an assignment due next week) or for the distant future (i.e. my coursework deadlines in January after Christmas). Although I want to keep in mind the January deadlines and start preparing for them early, I cannot prioritise things due in 3 months over my more immediate deadlines that need to be sorted now. Again, writing it down gets it out of my head and makes sure I won’t forget. Separate things that are urgent, important or less important.
3. There’s always time for socialising!
Even if you think you have lots of work to do, and that you have no spare time to enjoy yourself, there is always time to see people and relax. Whether this is just watching a film with your flatmates in the evening, or properly going out with your friends when you have a bit more time, it is important that you allow yourself to have this time. Without some time off you will just get stressed, and this will mean you won’t be able to do your work properly because you haven’t given your brain a break. Give your brain some TLC and take some time to relax!
I have recently discovered all the different exercise classes held at the Nancy Astor Sports Centre on campus. For £15 a month, you can go to as many classes you want! They are held at different times during 5 days a week, so you can book them around your university schedule. Some of the ones I’ve been to are Pilates, Legs Bums and Tums, Dance Fitness, Ballet Fitness and Aerobics, but there’s lots more to choose from! I would highly recommend them, because they are only an hour or so each. Whilst you concentrate on the person teaching you and telling you what to do, you will not be thinking about work or other stresses at all! It’s an hour to completely concentrate on something else and keep fit. I wish I found this during my first year, because I’ve enjoyed it so much already!
So these are just some tips I could think of that help me cope with the work at uni. Thank you for reading!