I love study planners and I credit them to my productivity. I started using study planners towards the end of my 1st year in university, and it really boosted my grades and productivity.
If you haven’t heard of study planners (or school planners), they are just regular planners but with the focus on studying or school. So they may have timetables, internet courses check tables, and other school/study related extras. You can get study planners from stationary stores or from online shopping sites.
I use two study planners, a paper one for vacations and a digital study planner during the school semesters.
My Study Planner During the School Semester
During the school semesters, I use a digital study planner on my iPad. I use the GoodNotes app to take all my notes for classes and also for my digital planning. So during the semester, I usually only carry my iPad for notetaking and for digital planning, and sometimes textbooks. My campus is big so it’s best that I carry a light backpack.
As for the planner that I use, I struggled to find a planner that would fit my needs, so I made one.
When making my planner, there were a few things I wanted in it:
- time table, to keep track of my classes or appointments
- habit tracker (or a daily check ), to track my habits like taking my vitamins and working out
- D-day counter, so that I can track how far away my tests or important dates are
- an area to list the assignments that are due that day
- an area to write down the total time I studied or spent being productive. Since its good to see how much time of the day I actually studied
Initially, I created a study planner for one month. But I loved it so much I made a 6 month version for the semester. Although I only use it for 4 months (a semester), it’s good to have it for 6 months since I can also plan for the vacation during the semester.
This is the final study planner I made.
This is how I use my school study planner:
For the monthly page, I include exams, bills, important events, and things I need to do during the month.
For my daily pages, I do something similar like this:
I highlight the times when I have classes and label them. During the semester, I pick a color for each class and keep it consistent for the semester.
For my assignments or tasks, I like to track how much I work on them. So I take note when I started and when I ended a task and highlight it on the timetable. Then at the end of the day, I count up how much time I spent on assignments or studying and put it in the ‘Study Time.’
I like to do this because sometimes I think I spend the whole day working or studying when in reality I only spend a few hours because I would be on my phone or just wasting time. Seeing how much time I am actually spending on being productive really helps me and motivates me to do better.
I also track my habits in the daily check area. And if there is something I want to remember for the next day, I put it in the memo area. Plus the D-day area reminds me how many days I have until my next quiz.
I use this planner during my university semester, and it helps me stay organized and on top of my homework. If you want help in staying productive during the semester, I really recommend a study planner.
My Study Planner During the Vacations
During the vacations, I prefer to use a paper planner. Since I don’t have to worry about carrying textbooks everywhere, I like choosing a paper planner during the vacations. Plus, since I can take my time each morning when planning, I like to decorate my planner with washi tape, stickers, and use markers, etc. Although I can also do this in my digital planner, it does feel a bit different.
Even though I don’t have any classes or assignments, I still like to keep busy by reviewing subjects or learning something new. I don’t want to waste my summers lazing around so I try to plan which courses I want to take or which subjects to review before summer starts. This is why I still use a study planner during the vacations.
My choice of planner for the vacations is the motemote 10 Minute Study Planner for 100 Days in white.
For me vacations are only about two and a half months but I like to use the 100 day planner. I don’t like to use three separate 31 day planners so I use the 100 day one for up to 2 and half months.
This is how I use my vacation study planner:
For the monthly page, I include important dates, bills, and meetings. I also keep track of my daily habits.
For daily pages, I do the same of listing tasks and highlighting the time I spent on them. Seeing how much time I spend being productive pushes me to keep trying stay productive.
On some days, I really like to go all out and decorate the daily page with a lot of stickers and markers.
During the vacations, I prefer to learn new subjects by taking online courses, whether from sites like Coursera, edX, or Udemy. So having a study planner during the vacations really helps me when taking those courses.
Study planners are a really great tool to help you stay productive during the semester or vacations. I really recommend study planners to all the students out there or just any one who wants to improve their studying or productivity.