It will be the end of the semester for many college students around the country soon. It also means time to get your term paper done. Before you can fully enjoy a summer break or go on holiday, there are finals to take and term papers to write. The stress of getting these done, and passing subsequent classes, can really put a damper on your spirit.
How to Make a Schedule for Writing Your Term Papers
If you have a term paper in your queue, you can use your online calendar to break it down and get it done more easily and effectively. The more calculated your writing approach, the less stress you’ll feel during the process. This post will help you get started on that paper now –and finish up on time — maybe early!
Schedule Due Dates
Start off by setting each due date you have in your online calendar. Your rough draft might have a separate due date than the final revision — and you want to make a note of all checkpoints that are graded. Having the required due dates on your Calendar will lay the framework for the rest of your scheduling.
You can also set your own due dates to ensure you’re not leaving everything until the very end. For example, you can set a personal due date to get an outline done a week after the term paper is assigned (this date may have passed — check when that was). Note how fast the time passes so that you can pull the lead out and move quickly. When is your rough draft due? When is the first page due? Get those dates on your Calendar.
Create an Outline
Your due dates will have meaning when they fall into an outline of your term paper. Write out your outline so that each step of the process receives its due diligence. Here are some aspects of your term paper you can include:
- Deciding on a topic if it’s up to you to choose
- Conducting research and gathering sources
- Developing a thesis statement
- Writing one or more rough drafts
- Final revisions, grammar checks, and rewriting
- Solidifying the layout, including title page and bibliography
Organizing all these steps will give you more direction as you approach your term paper. You can set aside your time more effectively knowing how much it is you have left to do.
Set Aside Writing Time — and stick to your schedule
Without dedicated time in your online calendar, it’s far too easy to procrastinate writing your term paper. Setting aside time specifically for writing leaves no room for excuses, as long as you stick to the schedule you set for yourself.
It will be easier to make time for writing when the rest of your schedule is organized. Otherwise, last-minute changes, responsibilities, and other deadlines can get in the way. Your schedule needs to be set from top to bottom for optimal success.
Add a morning and an evening routine to your online calendar to promote daily productivity. Add in any class times, work shifts, and other time commitments you have. Then you can fill in the cracks with time dedicated to nothing but your term paper.
Use Time Management Techniques
Setting aside the time to work on your term paper is a great start. The next step is utilizing that time to be productive and actually get some quality writing done. If you find yourself staring at a blank page more often than not, try some time management techniques to kick start your productivity.
A popular time management trick for writers and creatives is the Pomodoro technique. Work is split up into 25-minute intervals, followed by a five-minute break. After four cycles or Pomodoros, take a longer break. Splitting up your workload prevents burnout and can keep writer’s block at bay.
The Pomodoro technique isn’t for everyone, so look into other time management methods that fit your style better until you find the perfect fit. Feel free to customize the techniques you see in order to maximize your productivity.
Get a Review
A second set of eyes will do wonders for the integrity of your term paper. A professor, tutor, or even a fellow student can help point out some flaws in your writing that might have gone under the radar initially. Schedule a time to get your term paper reviewed at each of its phases.
Scheduling reviews in advance makes certain that people can help you out. Their commitment is an act of goodwill, so give them enough notice to make time for it. It would be beneficial to have a different person review your term paper each time for a variety of different perspectives.
Don’t forget to review your term paper on your own. This is your piece of work, and you’re most familiar with it. After completing most of the work, your perspective might change, and you want to make any adjustments you see fit while there’s still a chance to.
Learn to Say No
The art of saying no is a tough one to master. College students have so many activities and friends vying for their attention, even at the end of the semester. In order to get your term paper done on time, and worth a passing grade, you’re going to have to decline some invitations.
You should certainly make time for your social life, all while social distancing, of course — but prioritize your term paper first. If you find yourself falling behind on your progress because you’re going out too frequently, you’re going to have to make a short-term sacrifice to catch back up.
You can always combine the two by organizing group study sessions to work on term papers together. A group study session gives you and your friends a chance to do collective research, review each other’s progress, and hold each other accountable to deadlines.
Ready, set, write. Leveraging your time will help you write a term paper worthy of an award, or at the very least, help you complete a difficult class this semester.
…Now, ace your final exam…
Image Credit: anthony shkraba; pexels; thank you!