A weekly study schedule will make you aware of how much time you actually have each week, and will help you use that time effectively.
Look over the Sample Weekly Schedule which one student prepared to gain control of his time. Then read the points that follow; all are important in planning an effective weekly schedule.
Once you have familiarized yourself with the Weekly Study Schedule, click on the "Printable Weekly Study Schedule" link below and print out a blank schedule that you can personalize.Printable Weekly Study Schedule
Sample Weekly Schedule
Phy Ed= Physical Education
about a Weekly Study Schedule:
- Plan, at first,
at least one hour of study time for each hour of class time. Depending
on the course, the grade you want, and your own study efficiency,
you may have to schedule more time later. A difficult course, for
example, may require three hours or more of study time for each course
hour. Remember that learning is what counts, not the time it takes
you to learn. Be prepared to schedule as much time as you need to
gain control of a course.
- Schedule regular
study time. To succeed in your college work, you need to establish
definite study hours. If you do not set aside and stick to such hours
on a daily or almost daily basis, you are probably going to lose control
of your time.
There are many values to setting aside regular study hours. First,
they help make studying a habit. Study times will be as automatically
programmed into your daily schedule as, say, watching a favorite television
program. You will not have to remind yourself to study, nor will you
waste large amounts of time and energy trying to avoid studying; you
will simply do it. Another value of regular study time is that you
will be better able to stay up to date on work in your courses. You
are not likely to find yourself several days before a test with three
textbook chapters to read or five weeks of classroom notes to organize
and study. Finally, as mentioned before, regular study takes advantage
of the proven fact that a series of study sessions is more effective
for learning material than a single long cram session.
- Plan at least
one-hour blocks of study time. If you schedule less than one hour,
your study period may be over just when you are fully warmed up and
- Reward yourself
for using study time effectively. As the section on operant conditioning
in the chapter on learning in your psychology textbook explains, positively
reinforcing a certain behavior will likely lead to an increase in
the probability of its occurrence. In other words, if after a period
of efficient study, you allow yourself to watch an hour of television
or to telephone a friend (positive reinforcement), you will be more
likely to use your study time effectively in the future. Remember
that your reward system wont work if you cheat! If you reward
yourself with television and phone conversations with friends after
not studying, youll be just as likely to repeat the negative
behavior (not using your study time wisely) as the positive behavior
- Try to schedule
study periods before and after classes. Ideally, you should read
a textbook chapter before a teacher covers it; what you hear in class
will then be a second exposure, and so the ideas are likely
to be a good deal more meaningful to you. You should also look over
your notes from the preceding class in case the teacher discusses
the material further. Similarly, if you take a few minutes to review
your notes as soon after class as possible, you will be able to organize
and clarify the material while it is still fresh in your mind.
- Work on your most
difficult subjects when you are most alert. Save routine work
for times you are most likely to be tired. You might, for example,
study a new and difficult psychology chapter at 8 p.m. if you are
naturally alert then, and review vocabulary words for Spanish class
at 11 p.m., when you may be a little tired.
- Balance your activities.
Allow free time for family, friends, sports, television, and so on
in your schedule. Note that there is a good deal of free time (empty
space) in Richs schedule (Fig. 1.1), even with his classes,
work, and study hours.
- Keep your schedule
flexible. When unexpected events occur, trade times on your weekly
timetable. Do not simply do away with study hours. If you find that
your schedule requires constant adjustments, revise it. After two
or three revisions, you will have a realistic, practical weekly schedule
that you can follow honestly.
A Daily or Weekly
To Do List
Many successful people
make the to do list a habit, considering it an essential
step in making the most efficient use of their time each day. A to
do list, made up daily or weekly, may be one of the most important
single study habits you will ever acquire. A weekly list should be prepared
on a Sunday for the week ahead; a daily list should be prepared the
evening before a new day or first thing on the morning of that day.
Carry the list with
you throughout the day. Decide priorities. Making the best use of your
time means focusing on top-priority items rather than spending hours
completing low-priority activities. Place an asterisk (*) or an A
in front of the high-priority items on the list.
Cross out items as you
finish them. Doing this will give you a sense of accomplishment, as
well as help you see easily what you still have left to do.
The monthly calendar,
master study schedule, and To Do list, combined with your
own determination to apply them, can reduce the disorder of everyday
life. Through time planning, you can achieve the consistency in your
work that is vital for success in school. You will probably get more
done than you ever have before.
- If possible, study
in a well-lighted place where you can sit comfortably and be quiet
and alone. If your roommates dont keep the same schedule
as you and are socializing or relaxing during your optimal study times,
plan to go the library or student center. Many dormitories have study
lounges as well. If you have one particular spot where you usually
do most of your studying, you will almost automatically shift into
gear and begin studying when you go to that place.
- Stay in good physical
condition. You do not want to be prey to quick fatigue or frequent
bouts of sickness. Eat nourishing meals; you will probably master
a difficult psychology chapter more easily if you have had a solid
breakfast than if you had only a cup of coffee. Try to get an average
of eight hours of sleep a night unless your system can manage with
less. Also, try to exercise on a regular basis. A short workout in
the morning will help sustain your energy flow during the day.
- Use outside study
help when needed. Studying with other people can be beneficial
if everyone in the group is committed to doing work and really helping
each other to learn the material. Someone else may be able to clarify
concepts that you dont quite understand, and the camaraderie
may be just what you need to keep you going. Some students, however,
use studying in groups to procrastinate further. You may end up wasting
hours talking about things that have nothing to do with your studies,
or simply complaining about how much you dont want to study.
If you become part of a study group, force yourself to ensure that
the group stays on track and is helpful to you. Also, find out if
your school or individual departments have a tutoring service. If
so, do not hesitate to use the service to get help on a particular
subject or subjects. Determine if your school, like many, has a learning
center where you may work on developing writing, reading, study, and
math skills. Finally, learn the office hours of your professors and
plan to see them if you need additional help.
Printable Weekly Study Schedule
Benjamin, L.T., Cavell, T.A., & Shallenberger, W.R. (1984). Staying with initial answers on objective tests: Is it a myth? Teaching of Psychology, 11(3), 133-141.
Budescu, D., & Bar-Hillel, M. (1993). To guess or not to guess: A decision-theoretic view of formula scoring. Journal of Educational Measurement, 30(4), 277-291.
Geiger, M.A. (1991). Changing multiple-choice answers: A validation and extension. College Student Journal, 25(2), 181-186.
Kim, Y.H., & Goetz, E.T. (1993). Strategic processing of test questions: The test marking responses of college students. Learning and Individual Differences, 5(3), 211-218.
Rogers, W.T., & Bateson, D.J. (1994). Verification of a model of test-taking behavior of high school seniors. [Special issue: Cognition and assessment.] Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 40(2), 195-211.
Schwarz, S.P., McMorris, R.F., & Demers, L.P. (1991). Reasons for changing answers: An evaluation using personal interviews. Journal of Educational Measurement, 28(2), 163-171.
Towns, M.H., & Robinson, W.R. (1993). Student use of test-wiseness strategies in solving multiple-choice chemistry examinations. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 30(7), 709- 722.