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Couch to 5K Training: Syllabus week is over

By Satinder Kaur, 4th year Biochemistry student

After the glorious three week break we had for the holidays, syllabus week was a nice transition into school. Though I did have a professor who read the syllabus and quickly began the first chapter. But he showed us a Kermit meme and that made it okay. All jokes aside, as week two begins, I feel as if I am getting ready to run a marathon.

As the final semester of my undergraduate education begins, I find myself reflecting on the learning strategies I have applied to my school work. The one that stands out the most is creating a Weekly Schedule on Sunday nights. I have made one every week for as long as I can remember and I follow a series of steps.

  1.  Class times. I begin by adding in all the hours I have class. My favourite colour is green, so my class blocks are green to get me excited about the upcoming week. It’s all about personalization!
  2.  Health habits. This is where I schedule in exercise, lunch, dinner, and sleep. While I only need about twenty minutes for lunch, I leave an hour for dinner, sometimes two if I’m doing meal prep. I also give myself a cut off each night to ensure I get at least 8 hours of sleep!
  3.  Work. I have a job that requires me to be in the office 20 hours a week. My set office hours are the same every week, so I like to schedule these in with a new colour!
  4.  Other fixed commitments of that week. When I have meetings for group projects, a doctor’s appointment, or I’m having lunch with a friend, I schedule it in. These events are specific to one week but I make sure I add them in!
  5.  Homework. On Sunday nights, I also make a major to do list for the upcoming week of school tasks. I then schedule them in based on when I need to complete tasks. For example, a discussion post due on Friday may be scheduled in for Wednesday afternoon, with an editing period on Thursday.
  6.  Flex time. This time is for grocery shopping, laundry, hanging out with friends, or catching up on homework you may have missed during the week.

Everyone learns differently and creating a weekly schedule in this way is what works for me! Knowing your learning style and understanding the strategies that will help you succeed are ways to carry on doing well all throughout your school career.


Photo courtesy of Charles Smith under Flickr Creative Commons Attribution license 2.0.