Topic 4  – Tips and tricks to avoid wasting time

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In the next chapter, we share simple tools to avoid wasting time. These tools have been developed partly by adapting traditional time management techniques and partly by using recommendations and courses offered by institutions and universities specialized in distance education and digitally enhanced learning and teaching.

For inspiration, you can find some ideas and videos created  for their own students by Open University, one of the best-known providers of blended and e-learning in Europe

Video : Effective Time Management tips

Last consulted on 04/03/2024

The following tips can be used to avoid time wasters and to develop good time management practice:

01. Identify Time-Wasters

02. Switch off social media apps, and all notifications for the duration of your learning. Many phones have a do not disturb mode built in.

03. Allocate 3 hours of dedicated study time each day when you’re not doing anything else

04. Don’t answer questions immediately, allocate time after you have finished studying

05. Create a to-Do list to plan your day

06. Break large learning projects into smaller, manageable learning tasks

07. Prioritize and schedule your tasks (important, not important, urgent, not urgent, what can be done in a few minutes, and what will take longer to complete)

08. Try starting with the task that you dread the most “Eat that frog”

09. Try to concentrate on one task, avoid switching between multiple as it disrupts your concentration, do not multitask 

10. Try to finish what you planned for the day

11. Complete what you started, don’t switch to another task until the one before it is complete

12. Set deadlines for yourself whenever possible

13. Define who can distract you while you are studying and don’t let others take up your time

14. Learn to say no, they will understand it, if you want to say no do it quick

15. Establish daily learning routines

16. Keep your study place tidy

17. Create a learning environment in your room

18. Plan your breaks, use the Pomodoro technique (see additional resources), take short, regular, timed breaks

19. Remember to take some time off and relax. Technology is tiring

20. Give your mind a rest

21. Schedule your study time so that you study when you can concentrate the most and you are energized 

22. Do not hesitate to ask for help

23. Schedule some time to be active physically and spend time on your mental wellbeing

24. When resting try to avoid thinking about what you have not done and allow yourself to rest and relax

25. Use digital time and project management tools like, Freedom, RescueTime, The Balance, Forest, etc.

Before moving forward to topic 5 “summary”, complete activity 5.