5 Students Problems with Time Management

March 11, 2020 | Boards of Education | 0 comments

When it comes to the huge list of challenges that students face, time management frequently appears at the top. Whether it be waking up on time for that 8:00 AM class, completing assignments before the deadline, or starting exam preparation ahead of the final exams, managing time seems to be insurmountably difficult for matric and intermediate students.

But why exactly is it so difficult to manage time effectively? As the saying goes “time is gold” and must be treated as much. Yet students frequently undermine the value of time. Here are the most common mistakes that matric and intermediate students make when it comes to time management:

1.No To-Do List

Often students are unable to manage their time effectively because they do not know what they have to do. Neglecting to note down deadline dates and forgetting about upcoming final exams causes them to forget their pending tasks. As a result, they do not complete the tasks at the right time and rush to complete it last-minute. This manifests in the form of sloppy assignments and ineffective cram sessions. This poor time management results in a poor quality of work.

On the other hand, matric and intermediate students who keep track of their tasks and manage their time in a to-do list have much better time management skills. They are able to start their exam preparation in advance, and complete assignments before the deadline. As a result, they are better prepared and less stressed.

2. Procrastination

In other cases, students remember their tasks but simply procrastinate. Procrastination refers to the action of purposely postponing or delaying something. For example, when students are well aware that there is one month left for exam preparation but continue to delay it until the last moment, this is procrastination.

The leading cause of procrastination is a lack of motivation. At the back of their mind, they know that their exam preparation and other tasks are important, but cannot find the drive in themselves to actually do it.

However, sometimes procrastination also occurs when students underestimate the amount of time needed to complete a task. For example, they believe that the syllabus is short enough to be completed in one week, so they wait until the last week for exam preparation before realizing it is not enough time for sufficient past papers practice.

3.No Priorities

A lack of priorities can also result in poor time management. When students are unable to determine what tasks are most urgent, they end up spending time on less important matters. As a result, they run out of time to complete the more pressing matters.

For example, final exams are a very important part of all matric and intermediate students’ lives. However, many students neglect to see the importance of past papers practice and exam preparation and therefore do not give it due time.

Prioritizing is important at every stage of life. By having a good sense of priorities, individuals are able to allocate time for all their tasks accordingly. But when matric and intermediate students have a poor sense of their priorities, time management problems arise.


It is a common misconception that multitasking is an effective way to get work done on time. It is not. When students multitask, the quality of both tasks suffers, and it takes more time than usual to complete it. Texting while studying is a simple way to explain multitasking, but sometimes students take it a step further when trying to get done with “boring” tasks more quickly.

For example, if a student tries to solve chemistry past papers at the same time as revising a physics chapter, they will get the information jumbled up, take extra time to complete both tasks, and end up making more mistakes than usual. This is a poor way to utilize time.


Finally, distractions are a leading cause of poor time management. Electronics such as television, mobile phones, and video games distract students from studying effectively. However, friends and family can also pose as distractions that lead to poor time management.

Sometimes students will take a small break from solving past papers to scroll through social media. Then they will see other people having a fun time and this causes FOMO (fear of missing out). In the end, they will ditch their past papers practice in favor of something “more fun”. Hence, distractions can be very dangerous when it comes to effective time management.

Therefore, there are several reasons for the challenges that students face in managing their time effectively. It can be very difficult to overcome these challenges in order to make the best use of precious time. However, it is necessary to develop the skills needed to complete tasks on time, as this will lead to personal, professional, and academic success.

Here are some tips for better time management skills:
  • Set your goals and develop the right mindset to stop procrastinating
  • Create a to-do list and hold yourself accountable for following it
  • At the end of each day, recount all the tasks you complete and list of the tasks that are still pending. Focus on those tasks on the next day
  • Unplug from all distractions when you start working on a task. Turn off your phone and let friends and family know that you need to work in peace
  • Download an app to set reminders on your phone so that you do not forget any responsibility

So, be sure to use these helpful time management tips, to avoid falling into the traps mentioned above. Being self-aware will allow you to identify the major reasons for poor time management, so you will be able to avoid them. Moreover, using these time-management tips will help you make the most effective use of your time.

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