We need to be able to prioritise our studies. However identifying the distinction between what is urgent or important can help us further manage deadlines. This TLA is similar to the Eisenhower Matrix TLA.
Discuss with students the studies they need to complete in a certain period (could be a week, the rest of the term, the holidays or in the run-up to assessment deadlines). Ask them to:
1. Make a list of goals for this time period – considering their studies, career, personal life etc. (You can decide the parameters depending on the scope of the task – but it is worth noting how much students’ jobs and extracurricular activities can affect their study priorities).
2. Students look at the deadlines associated with the tasks plus the level of importance then write down next to each item whether it is urgent, important or both.
3. Using the Traffic Light System they prioritise what needs to be done and in which order (RED is urgent & important and needs to be done first, AMBER is urgent but not important, do these second, GREEN is important but not urgent and can be done last. Any which are neither need not be focused on.
This could be done as a whole group – to prioritise a set of revision goals or as individuals for a more personalised list.
Remember to check back and see how students are doing with their list.
With large groups, you can either run this as a solo activity and then put students into groups to discuss/adjust their decisions or you could have small-group discussions which contribute to a whole-group activity of generating one list pertinent to the module.
Students will be clear about their goals, how they will be spending their time and what other modules, activities, jobs etc. may be affecting their planning.
You may want to link into work that Student Services are running around revision periods or other points of potential stress.