For many adult students, going back to school while juggling work, family, and personal commitments can feel like a high-wire act. But it doesn’t have to be a perilous journey. With careful planning, the right mindset, and some proven strategies, you can master the balancing act. Here’s how to effectively manage your time as a working adult student at Washington Technical Institute.
1.) Prioritize & Strategize
- • Planning Ahead: The cornerstone of effective time management is planning. Investing in a good planner or using a digital calendar can help you map out deadlines, study sessions, work commitments, and personal activities.
- • Set Clear Goals: Whether it’s acing a particular subject, maintaining a specific GPA, or finishing your certificate in a given time frame, setting clear, achievable goals can help you stay motivated and on track.
2.) Break Tasks Into Manageable Chunks
- • Bite-Sized Learning: Rather than allocating hours at a time for study, break your tasks into 20-30 minute chunks. These short, focused intervals (often termed as the Pomodoro Technique) can boost productivity and reduce feelings of being overwhelmed.
- • List It: Make a to-do list each day. Start with the most important tasks, and as you check items off, you’ll experience a sense of accomplishment.
3.) Embrace Flexibility
- • Online Study: One of the greatest advantages of institutions like WTI is the flexibility of online courses. Utilize this flexibility to study during your most productive times, be it early mornings, late nights, or during lunch breaks.
- • Adaptable Routines: Understand that not all days will go as planned. Having a routine is great, but be ready to adapt when life throws a curveball.
4.) Find Your Ideal Study Environment
- • Quiet Corners: While some thrive in the buzz of a coffee shop, others need complete silence. Figure out where you’re most productive and make that space your regular study spot.
- • Stay Organized: A tidy desk can lead to a tidy mind. Organize your study space to have all materials handy and reduce unnecessary distractions.
5.) Utilize Technology
- • Study Apps: There are countless apps designed to help students manage their time effectively. From flashcards to study timers, there’s an app for nearly every need.
- • Digital Notes: Consider using tools like OneNote or Evernote to digitally jot down notes. They’re searchable, easily organized, and accessible from any device.
6.) Communicate With Stakeholders
- • Family & Friends: Let your loved ones know about your study commitments. Their understanding and support can be instrumental in reducing stress and potential conflicts.
- • Employer Support: Consider discussing your educational pursuits with your employer. They might offer flexibility or even resources to help you succeed.
7.) Don’t Neglect Self-Care
- • Take Breaks: It’s essential to give your brain a rest. Short, regular breaks can improve mental agility.
- • Exercise & Eat Right: Physical health plays a massive role in cognitive function and mood regulation. Ensure you’re eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise.
- • Sleep: Never underestimate the power of a good night’s rest. Sleep is vital for memory, focus, and overall well-being.
8.) Stay Connected With Fellow Students
- • Study Groups: Forming or joining a study group can offer motivation, diverse perspectives, and a sense of community.
- • Online Forums: Engage in online forums and student chats offered by WTI. Sharing experiences and tips can be both enlightening and encouraging.
Returning to school as a working adult is indeed commendable. While the journey can be challenging, remember that every class completed, every assignment submitted, and every test taken is a step closer to your goal. With determination, focus, and the right strategies in place, you’ll not only manage your time effectively but also enjoy the fulfilling journey of lifelong learning at WTI.
Washington Technical Institute’s fully online certificates can be completed in a matter of months, with daily or bi-weekly start dates. Such flexible start dates make these programs unique and much more accessible for students like you. Most of our certificates can be earned as a self-paced program, meaning that you can work at your own pace to complete your courses, even finishing early if you have the time and motivation to do so. An additional benefit of WTI’s programs is that we offer affordable pricing and monthly payment options to help our students leave school without debt.
Although our goal is to help our students graduate their programs with little to no debt, we also recognize that some students might need financing options for their educational investment. We are excited to announce our partnerships with Meritize Financial Assistance and Climb Credit, student lending companies focused on financing career-building programs like ours.
If you’re ready to enroll and start working toward the personal and professional benefit of a career certificate program, you can register for your program online through our website. Still have questions about our programs? Feel free to call us at 800-371-5581 or text us at 952-465-3702 to speak with an admissions specialist.