With the new year and new semester beginning, what better time is there to evaluate your learning goals? Maybe last semester didn’t go too well. Maybe this is your first semester back after a long break from secondary education. Or maybe life has just become more complicated in the last year. Whatever your reason, now is as good a time as any to set some goals and focus on your educational aspirations . To give you a head start on your resolutions, here are some proven goals that could help make this year the best one yet.
1. Set S.M.A.R.T goals.
S.M.A.R.T stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time bound. These are important attributes to keep in mind as you set your goals. Goals aren’t useful if they aren’t S.M.A.R.T. “Make more time for assignments” isn’t as good a goal as “I will work on assignments two hours a day and three hours on Saturday.” Keep these attributes in mind as you look at the other goals on this list.
2. Get better sleep.
Quality sleep impacts almost every part of your body—brain, metabolism, and heart, to name a few. While you sleep, your body processes memories; it solidifies and makes sense of what you learned that day. By sleeping, you make all the studying worth it! Sleep will also keep your brain sharp, adaptive, and creative.
3. Create a study space.
Your study space should be quiet, distraction free, and filled with all the items you need for study (computer, charger, study materials, note-taking material). Having all the things you need (and none of the things you don’t) in a designated study space can help you get into the education mindset. Over time your mind and body will recognize that when you enter that space, you are there to study.
4. Get to know your professors.
Sometimes online classes can feel isolating. One way to combat this is to get to know your professors; many offer online office hours. Chatting with your professor can help them get to know you, what you want out of the course, and any obstacles you are facing. They may be able to point you to additional resources to help you with the class, including university services you might find useful.
5. Stay consistent.
As with most things in life, consistency is the key to success. It may not seem like your goals are making the progress you would like to see, but by making those tiny steps you are moving closer to your goal. Getting more sleep might seem like it’s not making a difference, but soon you will be remembering those [equations/terms/numbers/facts] better than ever.
Hopefully, this new year will bring you the motivation you need to achieve your goals. If you need more help with your education this year, check out 5 Study Apps to Help Students Organize and Excel, 5 Ways to Prepare for Success in an MBA Program, and Getting the Right Mindset: 4 Tips for Reading Electronic Texts.
Abryan. (2021, December 2). How getting enough sleep helps your brain. West Tennessee Healthcare. https://www.wth.org/blog/how-getting-enough-sleep-helps-your-brain/