Trick or Treat: Time Management Dos and Don’ts When Writing an Essay

by Sheila Pawelski2

  1. Don’t Procrastinate and plan everything beforehand!

Write out ideas on a blank piece of paper a week before your paper is due so you won’t be stressed when it is time to write. This will help you brainstorm some ideas and jump start the process. You should go into a quiet room where nothing will distract you such as your phone, television, or even your pet. Give yourself short breaks so you can recharge and focus, making you more productive. Having a writing schedule can make you stay on top of your work. This helps me a lot when I have tests and papers to do in a week.

  1. Read and understand all the directions before you start your paper.

The first thing I do when writing a paper is look at the instructions and read them thoroughly. Not reading the instructions when writing a paper can make you lose a lot of points. If you don’t understand 3the instructions, you can always ask your professor or even your librarian. The librarians are always very helpful when you have a question. Make sure you understand the task and ask questions just in case you need it!


3. Many college students plagiarize, even if they aren’t aware of it.

When students are in a rush, they will plagiarize because they want to finish their assignment quickly, and they don’t want to deal with it. In order to avoid plagiarism, you should paraphrase and cite everything in the proper format. You should also include all your references at the end of your paper to give credit to all of your sources.5

4. Take a deep breath and relax when planning a paper.

If you really hate writing papers, try to make it as enjoyable as possible. Work on the task first, while you have more energy. Reward yourself when you complete certain aspects of the assignment. And ask a friend when you need help!


5. Make sure all of your other assignments are done and so you can give the paper your full attention.

Doing this will help relieve stress and help you become an even better writer. Keep track of your progress and cross tasks off when they are completed. I have a planner and I write all of my assignments down and make sure I complete everything by a certain time and day.






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