Nowadays, people live in a difficult and interesting world. In order to succeed, every person has to develop soft skills, set priorities, and accurately define the time needed for an effective task accomplishment. Time is one the most valuable things that every human being has. It is up to a person to choose how to spend that time. Besides, time is not a renewable resource. Nevertheless, many people complain that they always have little time and that they barely manage to handle their most important tasks. Time management is the process of a conscious planning of the amount of time spent on a particular activity. Moreover, this process involves the identification of priority tasks that should be accomplished first. If the chosen time management strategy is coherent and well-organized, it improves and raises productivity. However, the implementation of such a strategy requires a person to prepare a plan to make sure that important and urgent tasks are accomplished before non-important issues and those that may be completed later.
Currently, there exist various techniques developed to facilitate planning. They help with the categorization of tasks according to their importance and with the management of particular task. One of them is the Eisenhower Matrix (“The Eisenhower Matrix — Eisenhower”), which is considered to be the simplest tool for time management. However, many people still suffer from improper time management. The issue is particularly important for students, who often have to multitask. Thus, the project under development will focus on time management among students. In addition, the project will help to understand what activities take the most time to complete among students and how unplanned activities influence students’ overall performance. The final part of the paper will be devoted to the possible techniques that might help students to develop and improve time management skills.
The objective of the project is to establish the main strategies of time management and to define why people fail to organize their time. In addition, the project will examine the best solutions and practices for the solving of organizational problems that the majority of students face in the course of their studies.
The project aims to answer the following questions:
- What are the benefits of time management?
- Why do most students fail to manage their time?
- What are the effects of failing to manage one’s time properly?
- What strategies should a student use to achieve time management?
As a result, the aim of the project is tightly connected with the needs of the social and organizational life.
The decision to conduct a project on time management was made after it had become evident that students wasted much of their time and often complained about the lack of studying hours. There is only a small amount of those who know how to arrange their time effectively. However, the majority of students try to manage their time unsuccessfully, while the others do not even have an idea that they can deliberately plan their schedule. Some students think that their actions are automatically determined. Unfortunately, they usually neglect important school and social events. Thus, those who fail to manage their time in school get poor grades and low exam scores. Moreover, they may experience stress because they do not know what they are supposed to do in such a situation. The project will investigate the activities that most students waste their time on and the effective ways of managing time and attending important academic and social events.
To gather comprehensive data, it was decided to design a detailed questionnaire that will help to establish the exact problems that student experience while managing time (see Appendix). Besides, it is vital to use secondary documented sources and materials related to time management. For example, the project will be based on the analysis of Kaushar (2013), Al-Zoubia (2016), and Nadinloyi, Hajloo, Garamaleki, and Sadeghi (2013). The project’s activities were organized and divided into four weeks.
In order to accomplish the project, three latest articles on time management by the scientists from different parts of the world will be used. In his article, Dr. Maysoon Al-Zoubi discusses the ability of students to manage their time and the influence of poor time management on students’ performance. Al-Zoubi states that successful time management has a positive influence on the self-appreciation of students and helps them keep track of their academic success and development. Moreover, Al-Zoubi defined several problems of time management students in Jordan high schools face. First, Al-Zoubi investigated the extent of a student’s ability to manage time (Al-Zoubi, 2016). Further, she measured the average academic achievements of students in Jordan high schools. The statistical data received in the course of the research were thoroughly compared and analyzed.
Nadinloyi et al. claim that the main idea that might help students to achieve the desired results is to working smart but hard. This is the main reason why they point out that it is important to pay attention to the schedule and try to plan in advance. According to their observation, most students start to learn one week before exams, and that is the reason why the majority of them fail (Nadinloyi et al., 2013). The lack of time, time pressure, and inability to study the needed amount of materials encourage students to procrastinate and look for other options to spend their time. The data gathered in the course of the study were presented in statistical tables, where the results were shown and compared with those of the control group.
Finally, Kaushar performed and analyzed various data related to the influence of time management on the performance of students. The author points out the main constraints that might influence the performance of students during their studies. The main problem is that they spend too much time in social networks and talking on the phone with friends. Another factor is that despite the fact that the majority of students are working, they still do not have clearly defined goals, mission, vision, targets, and objectives. Finally, many students spend too much time with friends, and their activities are usually unscheduled (Kaushar, 2013).
In the course of the project, the questionnaire will be spread to thirty students from different classes. The data analysis will be conducted with the help of Excel and SPSS software and then presented in a pie chart that will demonstrate how many people have responded and what experience they have shared. The first measurement that will be analyzed will be the total amount of participants. Below is the sample of a table that provides information on the number of participants. Besides, international students from Asia, the USA, and Central Europe, who are currently studying at Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University, will participate in the study as well.
Week 1 will be devoted to the administering of the questionnaires to different students and the collection of the answers on the second day. The questionnaire includes fifteen questions. One of the first questions will inquire the age of participants. This will help to determine the age group that participates in the project. Moreover, such an approach will provide information and understanding regarding the age when time management might be an issue that influences both academic performance and outdoor activities.
During the week 2, an analysis of the acquired data from the questionnaires will be conducted. The results are planned to be divided into three groups. The first group will include general information, such as age and faculty. The results of the analysis will allow to sum up the results in the table “Age of the Participant” (Table 2). Undergraduate students from such faculties as Management, Information Technologies, Business Accounting, and Business Marketing will participate in the survey.
During week 3, the obtained data will be interpreted, analyzed, and related to the documented information. In addition, the analysis of the available time management strategies and the rate of the usage of these strategies will be conducted. Moreover, this stage of the project will study the materials related to the number of students who use time management mobile applications or their desktop versions. Additionally, the number of students who are not using any application, though might be interested utilizing them, will be defined as well. Finally, significant attention will be devoted to the features considered to be the most important when it comes to choosing time management applications.
In order to understand what students know about time management, the questionnaire will try to determine where and when students learnt about time management and what benefits they get from managing their time well. The interpretation of the participants’ answers will expand the understanding of the advantages of time management. The received data will be organized in line and pie charts.
In order to perform an accurate analysis of the relation between time management and academic achievements, the project will take into account average score, time devoted to studies, social life, and outdoor activities. The results will be represented using matrix and pivot tables. In addition, the time spent on unscheduled events and the time spent in social networks will be calculated.
During week 4, conclusions and recommendations will be made. According to Al-Zoubi (2016), time is available for all people equality. On the basis of the received results, each of the thirty students will be suggested a specially designed time management plan for one month. This plan will include the aim for the scheduling, the explanation of the previous results, and the description of the time management techniques that student may use during university studies and after graduation. One of the limitations of such an approach may be the fact that each student has his or her own personality and character, which may considerably influence the overall performance during university studies. In addition, it will be educating to observe the answers and performance of international students. Each participant will be encouraged to share how the culture he or she belongs to views and values time, as well as to share experiences regarding difficulties to adapt to the suggested time management techniques.
In conclusion, effective time management is necessary for a successful life and improved academic performance. The main factors that distract modern students are social networks and unplanned events. The project will aim to determine whether students pay attention to time management, and whether they succeed in this activity. Some students use time management applications and reminders. After the first fail, many students set the green line, instead of a deadline, in order to omit psychological pressure. Moreover, cultural background influences the understanding and perception of time as well.