Archives For Time management

Managing-time-effectiveSN

by ACCA student blogger Shahroze Naeem

Lots of students today face a shortage of time to study and prepare for exams. When I was preparing to take four exams last December, I had the same issue. Knowing I would have to come up with a plan, I decided to use the following three tips to draft an effective study schedule:

1. Prioritizing the subjects

There is always that one subject which is harder than the rest. If you too feel you need to devote more time to a particular subject, prioritize it for the first three months of your preparation time. Study more of it and try to go through the complete subject syllabus within those three months.

This will help restore your confidence and provide you ample time to revise the tougher bits of that subject in the last three months. Now that the tougher subject is prepared, you can focus on the other subject(s) in the second half (the last three months) of your preparation time.

2. Prioritizing the hobbies

I had a lot of activities going on with friends, family and relatives. When I decided to sit four exams, I knew I wouldn’t have time to enjoy all those activities. I decided to prioritize what mattered most. I came up with a well-defined schedule that clearly stated what I could do during the week without harming my study schedule.

A lot of ACCA students make study schedules, but our hobbies are just as much related to our exam success as our preparation for the exams. It is time you define what matters most for you and get to enjoy those hobbies.

3. Having a study buddy

I prepared for my exams along with my sister and therefore we both were on the same page. We decided to be study buddies and help each other by sharing useful notes, tips and little tidbits of information that were important with each other. There is loads of information in our study texts, and missing even the slightest bit can contribute to failure. With a study buddy, chances of missing anything are reduced.

This helped me and my sister a lot and we were very confident regarding our exam success when the time came.

Good luck with your studies.

 

If you don’t have a study buddy, why not join the ACCA Learning Community and link up with other students studying for exams and share your tips and ideas for successful revision.

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This post was originally published in ACCA Potential e-magazine 

Why is it that when there is something that we have to do, we find a million other things we ‘need’ to do first? It is not easy juggling your deadlines all at once; add in paid work, socialising, keeping fit, responsibilities and family. Good time management isn’t just about being able to make a study timetable or work schedule. It’s important to learn how to use the time you have effectively.

Try the following tips to improve your time management:

* prioritise your tasks

* be self-motivated to get your work completed

* get yourself organised so that you don’t waste time looking for things

* develop your study practices so that you use your time efficiently

* stay informed about things like timetables, submission processes and deadlines

For a quick fix to get your time under control try these 5 steps

  1. List everything you need to do

Listing what you need to do is the first step in taking control instead of being reminded and overwhelmed at the thought of everything you still need to do.

  1. Organise under three headings – now, soon and later

Prioritise deadlines into what needs to be done now or perhaps can wait to be done ‘later’. You might be lucky and find that it does not need to be done after all.

  1. Break down big tasks into smaller steps

Try breaking down your tasks into smaller chunks, taking a step at a time, rather than aiming to complete the whole task all in one go.

  1. Tick off what you have done from your ‘now’ list.

It feels good when you get one piece of work done and helps you relax to work on the next piece calmly, even if it was something you were avoiding. If you get stuck, ask for help or go back to the basics and build from there.

  1. Make a plan to tackle the other tasks and put them in order of priority.

Plan what you have to do and when it needs to be done by. Make sure you check the deadline dates and word counts, you are not expected to do more than the scope that is set out for you.

Download the free ACCA student planner app for the iPhone and the Android – this may help keep you organised, so you have student information at your fingertips.

How to manage your time

soramsey —  6 December 2013 — 9 Comments

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by ACCA student blogger Yani Shi

I mentioned time management in my lost blog, and I am going to expand on this topic in this post as it is very important for both study and work. Time management is the art of arranging, organising and scheduling your time to generate more effective work and productivity. In order to study effectively and efficiently, I adopt a common, but effective, time management approach.

Making clear and detailed goals, both short term (1 week) and long term (1 term), is the first step to effective time management. Usually, I start to study the exam papers I will have 3-4 months before June/December exams. The goal for the first two months is to study all the topics in the syllabus. The goal for the third month is to review the notes made in the first period and read technical articles in Student Accountant. In the final month before the exams, I do all of the previous exam papers, read examiners’ articles, summarise important topics and most importantly relate what is examined to the syllabus and technical articles.

Secondly, I make a to-do list for achieving my goals. This makes me stay organised and take control of my tasks and study. I make detailed lists, such as time and task allocation for each chapter/each exam paper and each day and week.  

Thirdly, I prioritise my time between ACCA study and my university courses. Sometimes, it’s hard to know how to prioritise, especially when I am facing a flood of seemingly-urgent tasks. However, it’s essential to learn this to manage your time better.

I use the urgent/important matrix, (like the illustration on this page) to help me determine my priorities. On scale 1 – 5, assign importance and urgency to the tasks in your to do list. Important activities have an outcome that leads to the achievement of your goals, whether these are professional or personal.

Urgent activities demand immediate attention, and are often associated with the achievement of someone else’s goals. For “critical activities”, I plan them ahead and leave some time in my schedule for unexpected events. For “important goals”, I make sure that I have plenty of time to do these things properly, so that they do not become urgent. For “interruptions”, which stops me achieving my goals, I try to reschedule or delegate them so I can focus on important activities. For “distractions”, I avoid them if possible or just ignore/cancel them.

Last but not the least, taking breaks between studying periods is crucial for achieving goals. It’s impossible for anyone to focus and produce really high-quality work without giving their brains some time to rest and recharge. So, don’t dismiss breaks as “wasting time.” Wise breaks will enable you to think creatively and work effectively. There is an old saying in Chinese “If you grind down a chopper it will not cut firewood”.

If it’s hard for you to stop working, then schedule breaks for yourself, or set an alarm as a reminder. Go for a quick walk, grab a cup of coffee, or just sit and meditate at your desk. Try to take a five minute break every hour during the study.

This article is only a suggestion of how to time manage effectively. Everyone is different, so you could always work on finding the best way for you to manage your time.

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by ACCA student blogger Hafeez Adeboye

December 2013 exams are a few weeks away. Oh, how time flies! It was barely a year ago, December 2012 I was retaking my F8 and F7 papers. And in June 2013, wrote F9 and P1. Now in December 2013, I will be advancing my journey towards completing the ACCA Qualification and achieving ACCA membership.

My previous failures in my penultimate year have taught me the need for effective time management and adequate preparation. You must learn to plan your time around your life style and cultivate the discipline to stick to it.

Planning your time is one thing, managing it is another entirely. That is why you need discipline. After all, in my opinion you only need about 185 hours of study time per exam paper. This sounds like a pretty small fraction of 2,304 hours available between results release and the next exam session.

The 185 hours includes working on past exam papers, study and revision. Modest though it appears, this is actually no mean feat for a working student such as myself.

One setback I face is getting my study leave approved by my employer, because I occupy a sensitive role. So it’s sometimes hard to leave early enough to prepare for my exams. This puts a lot of pressure on my time. Discipline was what got me through. Because of it, my preparation was adequate – as my results reflected; I have not failed a single paper since.

Now I am approaching my final preparation for the December ACCA exams. Kindly join hands in wishing me good luck in my papers, as I do the same for you. I know some don’t believe in luck. Well, I do. And I wish you a lot of it in your exams.