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Adult Learner Skills

Time Management

Adult learners  must self-impose their own academic goals and deadlines; it is too easy to let reading and assignments pile up until the due date. Adult learners are working to succeed, and will not only have to set clear study goals and meet them, but will have to allow for the unexpected: the call from a child's teacher, a flat tire, an inheritance, a broken tooth, a visit from a high school best friend, the power going off...; life happens.

It is important to create a calendar with all scheduled activities, but also leave room for the unexpected.

Using a schedule may initially seem over-restrictive, but persist and it will soon become apparent that goals are being reached.

A few tips:

  • Smart phone/tablet apps for study skills and time management can be excellent tools.
  • Once a practicable routine has been established, work just a bit ahead of scheduled assignments; that way, when unexpected things come up, the routine can still be adhered to.
  • Keep in mind that 5-10 minute breaks each hour are necessary to maintain focus.
  • Treat scheduled study time as seriously as work or sleep time.
  • Keeping a paper and pen nearby during rest can be valuable; they can be used to record thoughts that may be forgotten otherwise.
  • Never leave home without some portion of coursework that can be reviewed. Think about the 10-30 minutes waits at the bus stop, in the doctor's office, after hockey practice...


Hard-copy planners for that can be printed to help keep on top of tasks:

More Resources

For more tools and resources about time management review the following links:

Time Management Module on the Academic Skills Hub

 How to prepare a study Schedule



Athabasca University. (2021, April 13). A Time for Everything and Everything in its Time. Https://Counselling.Athabascau.Ca/.