How to boost your productivity as a student

Apr 06, 2022 Careers AdviceResources 6 minutes read

When studying at university, it can be hard to stay productive. Even if you attend all of your lectures, spend hours in the library and set out time to study, low productivity levels could hinder how much work you actually get done. Just being present, or staring into space for hours, won’t help you achieve the results you want.

As a student, you may feel like you have a lot to do but very little time. Alongside achieving good grades and marks, it is important to take care of yourself, get plenty of rest and have time for socialising!

Being productive is probably one of the most important skills you will develop whilst at university, so we’ve put together some productivity tips to ensure you perform at your very best.

Get into a routine

Having a work routine is one of the key elements to becoming more productive. If you have set times to wake up, get work done, have breaks and factor in errands and social time, you will find that you can achieve a lot more in a day. By splitting up your day, you won’t feel as though you have to sit at your desk for hours and hours, trying to work. Instead, you can set a rough schedule of working hours and ensure you have little rewards and breaks throughout the day.

Time management

working productively

Another key aspect of productivity is learning how to effectively manage your time. If you need to achieve a couple of things throughout the day, make sure you complete the most important tasks first and then move onto less pressing work. By getting your work done within your deadlines, you will free up more time for a balanced and fun life at university.

Take regular breaks

When studying at university, you should never force yourself to sit at your desk or in the library for hours on end. Taking regular and varied breaks will increase your productivity levels. Our brains can only handle so much new information before we start to get tired and lessen our retention.

When your brain reaches its limit, you will find that you no longer learn in the same way, which can actually cause stress and more fatigue. Whether you take 5 minutes every half an hour, or 30-minute breaks a few times a day, you can decide which schedule works best for you.

Set deadlines

You will have a number of looming deadlines as a student, but why not release some of the pressure and stress by setting your own deadlines to help split up your modules. By doing this you will avoid leaving work to the last minute, and you will give yourself much more time to read over and check everything. Just like effective time management, juggling deadlines is a common requirement for many senior jobs and so will stand you in good stead for when you graduate.

Set up a comfortable workspace (at home or in the library)

productivity tips

When deadlines are looming and you have lots of work to complete, it’s a good idea to set up a dedicated work or study space away from distractions. Whether you prefer working from your home, or finding a quiet area of the library, make sure you have everything you need to have a productive day.

Get plenty of sleep and eat healthily

A healthy diet and a good amount of sleep can do wonders for your productivity. It is recommended that we have around 7-9 hours sleep each night for healthy brain function. To increase your productivity in the long term, be sure to wind down at the end of each day and go to bed calm. Take measures to tire your body out and relax the mind, such as exercise or meditation.

Alongside a good amount of sleep, a healthy diet is your brain’s best friend. Ever heard of brain food? Well, it does actually work! Try to drink plenty of water throughout the day, eat your 5 a day and have nutritious meals. Following these simple rules will keep your energy levels high and make studying much more productive. This will also help your immune system stay strong and help prevent illness!

Have a digital detox

Even if you set up a quiet and focused working environment, you may still find that you are distracted by your various devices. Phones, tablets, tv and watches are filled with apps and games that are designed to distract you and sap productivity. So, if you’re having trouble focusing, why not try a digital detox? Try putting your phone on do not disturb, moving it into another room, or keeping it out of sight. If you’re going to the library, you could even just leave your phone at home!

Fit in some exercise

exercising helps productivity

One of the best ways to stay productive when studying is by scheduling in some exercise, especially if it is outside in the fresh air. Exercising for around 15-30 minutes each day, even if it’s just a quick walk around the block before you carry on studying, or going for a quick jog, will clear your mind and make you feel so much better.

Set achievable goals with rewards

Sometimes we all lack a little motivation, which is way it’s important to reward yourself with little treats if you complete certain studying goals! It might not sound like much, but you’ll be surprised how much it motivates you!

Boost your productivity: STEM Women Events

If you are a current STEM student or recent graduate looking to start your career within a STEM industry, join us at one of our graduate careers events this year! We are running a number of virtual, hybrid and in-person events throughout 2022 – view our events line up.

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