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10 Tips to Organize and De-Clutter Your Academic Life

10 Tips to Organize and De-clutter Your Academic Life

By Sharon Feder '06

As midterm exams approach and class-work becomes more time-consuming, keeping on top of academics can turn out to be a demanding task. Here are 10 tips to make keeping up with coursework more manageable.

1. Organize yourself. Remember due dates, tests, and appointments by writing them in a planner or calendar.

2. Go to class. Being in class will be more advantageous than reading someone else's notes.

3. Lose the distractions. Go to the library or establish guidelines with your roommate for quiet times.

4. Study in blocks. Avoid last-minute cram sessions by spending small blocks of time on your studies each day.

5. Ask questions. Professors have office hours for a reason. If you have a question related to what is being discussed in class, ask your professor.

6. Communicate. Professors are not the only people available for questions. Sometimes working with classmates can be a helpful experience. Resources such as Blackboard allow students to e-mail their classmates (as well as professors).

7. Get help. The Center for Academic Development and Learning (CADL) provides one-on-one and group tutoring as well as writing assistance for students on both a short-term and long-term basis free of charge. The CADL is located in the basement of Old Main. To schedule an appointment, call 845-257-3580.

Also, the Psychological Counseling Center offers an "Academic Success Program" that provides workshops about issues affecting students such as time management, test anxiety, writing blocks and stress management. For more information, call 845-257-2920.

8. Pay attention to detail. Knowing the information is half the battle; make sure to read directions and questions carefully on assignments and exams.

9. Take care of yourself. Comprehension and memory are affected by stress and fatigue, so treating your body well is important. Eat well, exercise, and get enough sleep.

10. Relax. Once you've organized and de-cluttered your academic life, go see a movie, take a walk around town, or maybe even try yoga.