Effectively managing your time requires balancing teaching, research, your course load, and often other work. This workshop will offer strategies to help you balance your responsibilities as a teacher and a graduate student. Topics to be covered include deliberate planning of your research and teaching agendas, planning time for productive class preparation, and dealing with procrastination. You will leave this workshop with a plan to manage your time… and maybe even a strategy to take some nights and weekends off.
This workshop was offered as part of the TLC’s 2023 Mid-Winter Institute.
This workshop took place in person. The workshop and materials were developed by Mei Ling Chua and Luke Waltzer.
All materials on this page and in the linked google folder are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC-BY-SA) 4.0 International Public License.
This folder contains a workshop plan and workbook.
- Introduction and Goals
- Strategies for Teaching
- Securing Task to Time
Effectively managing your time requires balancing teaching, research, your course load, and often other work. This requires its own kind of intentional, ongoing effort–for instance, how can you handle lesson planning when you’re in the middle of writing a seminar paper? This workshop will offer strategies to help you balance your responsibilities as a teacher and a graduate student. Topics to be covered include deliberate planning of your research and teaching agendas, planning class preparation, and dealing with procrastination. You will leave this workshop with a plan to manage your time… and maybe even a strategy to take some nights and weekends off.
- Gain a sense of how you are currently spending time
- Consider a range of time management strategies and tactics
As graduate student instructors, it can be challenging to figure out how to fit in multiple, sometimes conflicting responsibilities and priorities into the limited hours of a day. For those of you attending this workshop as part of the Teach@CUNY Summer Institute, who will be adding teaching to your existing responsibilities without having the opportunity to take something away, this will require some experimentation and fine tuning.
Many of the Institute attendees noted time management as a particular concern in their pre-Institute surveys. It always is, and always will be. The fact of the matter is that the labor you do as burgeoning scholars is fluid. It fills the space that you give it. You can always read more, write more, and spend more time preparing for your classes or grading. It will ever be true that there’s not enough time.
This workshop, then, intends to normalize that fact– you are not the first GC student who’s struggled with this, and you won’t be the last. The struggle doesn’t end when you graduate, either. I graduated well over a decade ago, and my strategies for managing my time continue to shift as my work and life evolves. I’m aging, too, and it’s having an impact on how and when I can do certain kinds of work, when I’m at my best.
Ideally, you’ll develop strategies to be more mindful of your own work contexts, and the discipline and difficult decisions that they require of you. And, hopefully, you’ll develop some kindness with yourself for when your strategies and discipline and balance crumble into pieces towards the end of the semester.
I want to give a shout out to Mei LIng Chua, a former TLC fellow, who developed the workbook and some of the activities upon which this workshop is based. (Share link)
- Self-assessments (free):
- What are you struggling with?
- What’s going well?
- What do you spend too much/too little time on?
Take out a sheet of paper, or bring up a Word document and create a document with 3 columns
- Inventory: What do I do? (three column)
- Reflection: Are there things you would like to do that you aren’t currently doing? (three columns)
Breakout rooms: Did anything surprising come up when looking at your time this way?
What was the most shocking or unexpected thing you learned about how you spend time?
- REFLECTION QUESTIONS
- What are your own high and low energy patterns? How might this help how or when you schedule different tasks?
- What are some of the factors that are causing you to procrastinate on the tasks that you put off?
- Have you experienced shifts in your energy, attention, or productivity during COVID-19?
Organize into (three columns):
A = tasks that require the most energy, and you at your sharpest
B = tasks that require alertness and focus, but not your best creativity
C = rote tasks, like going through email, etc.
Securing Task to Time
- 15: planner