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How much time do you spend on your studies?

This article discusses the variability of hours a student needs to spend on studying, followed by reflection questions about the learners’ use of time
An example of a well organised week plan, with time allocated to study, free time, fitness and social activities
© University of Groningen

How much time should you spend on your studies? Unfortunately there is no straightforward answer to this. It depends …

How much time you should spend on your studies depends on many things:

  • Is the material available in your native language?

  • If not, how proficient are you in that language?

  • How much do you already know about the subject?

  • How strict is the teacher?

  • What’s the reputation of your degree programme, course or training session: is it relatively easy or really tough?

And not only are there differences between degree programmes, but also between modules. Plus, the study load can vary substantially per country.

So, try to find out what your weekly study load should be.

Do you spend enough time on your studies?

The next question is, do you manage to spend enough time on your studies? To work that out, you can monitor your use of time. During our courses we often talk to students who have monitored their time for a whole week. And we’ve noticed 3 trends:

In reality, they actually study fewer hours than they think. The second trend is that they can’t recall how they spend their time. Basically, they are wondering: what did I actually do? And, the final trend is that whatever you do: leisure, cleaning, sports, travel, studies – there is always something that takes more time than expected.

And now 3 questions for you:

  • Do you recognise any of the trends described above?

  • Are you satisfied with the number of hours you study per week?

  • Can you improve how you use your time?

Please share your thoughts with your fellow learners.

© University of Groningen
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