The major thing different in college classes from high school classes is the syllabus. I don’t know about you, but my syllabus in high school was always pointless. It always stated the same grading scale, the same attendance policy, and the same general information about every class.
In college, it’s different. Some professors put some assignments on the syllabus and then never speak of them again. No reminders the day before it’s due, no mentioning it in class, nothing. You need to be on top of your own work.. and I love that.
I have to admit, it was a little intimidating at first… but then I found this idea for an assignment planner by Kirsten at Organized Charm. I loved it.
So this idea was 100% from her. I changed it a tiny bit to fit me, but not much.
First, I gathered all of my class syllabus’ (syllabi?) together and highlighted all the important dates: due dates, exams, field trips, whatever I had to remember.
I opened up Microsoft Excel (this can also be done in Google Drive Spreadsheets if you do not have Microsoft Excel) and made a spreadsheet with 3 columns.
1 for the due date, 1 for the class, and 1 for the assignment.
Below that I merged the row together and wrote the first month. Then I skipped about 10 rows and wrote the next month.. and repeated until all the months for the term were on there.
Then I began to write in the dates for each class. I started with one class and added in each assignment under the month that it was due. In the assignment section I made sure that I was short and sweet, so that it didn’t grow too big.
Go class by class so that you don’t get overwhelmed with having to go day by day.
Once you’ve entered in all the assignments, arrange them by due date. If you’re not computer or spreadsheet savvy, this one might get a little confusing for you so I’ve laid it out in small steps below.
1) Highlight the Area
Click on the cell in the top right corner of the month (the first due date) and drag until you have selected all the assignments, classes, and due dates for that month.
2) Click the A-Z Button
Click on the button on your toolbar that says A-Z. There should then be a menu telling you a variety of different things. The most common is that it will say sort it A-Z (alphabetically) but that is not what you want to do. If it already says to sort smallest to largest, just click that and you’re done. If it does not, then click on the custom sort button.
3) Custom Sort: Smallest to Largest
When you click on the custom sort button, this box should pop up. Simply select to sort column A (your due date column) by smallest to largest and press ok!
Then your month should be all sorted out by due date! Nice and easy 🙂
Go on and select the rest of the months and do it again one at a time.
Now that you’ve made the spreadsheet, how do you use it?
I have mine taped up right next to my desk. When I start an assignment I highlight it in yellow. When I finish an assignment I highlight over the yellow highlight in orange. Then when I turn the assignment in I cross it out with a black pen. This way I can keep track of every step of the process.
Using this spreadsheet has already saved my grade, and I’m only 6 weeks into the semester! I was leaving for my morning class and I wanted to make sure that I had finished any homework due for that day, so I glanced at my assignment planner before I left. Turns out I had done the homework for that class, but I hadn’t done the homework for the one after it! It was an assignment that my professor had put up on the syllabus but had not mentioned anything of it in class. It was a very simple task, so I did it while I was waiting for my first class to start.
Turns out that everyone in that class forgot to do it, except me! Luckily I had the time to remind a couple of my friends in that class to get it done, and they were able to turn it in on time.
Since I made this planner one of my roommates has stolen the idea as well and made it her own. She doesn’t print it out, just keeps it as a spreadsheet on her computer, and strikes it off digitally every time she completes an assignment.
This spreadsheet is only one of the ways that I make sure I’m on top of my work. My main source of school organization is my planner, but my favorite? My post-it note calendar. I absolutely love my post-it note calendar.. but that I’ll be saving till next time!
What do you do to stay organized for school? Tell me about it in the comments and maybe I’ll try it out!
Tagged on: Academics assignment planner assignment spreadsheet blogging101 college craft diy do it yourself high school highlighter how to life my desk organize planner productivity schedule school spreadsheet university
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DaniOctober 8, 2014College, My Desk, Organization + Planning, Organize, Tech
Easy to use. HUGE potential. I highly recommend this for any student who finds it difficult organising assignments and find time keeping a problem.Totally TheatreGoogle Play
Really functional app, great layout and covers the essentials in planning for academic success. Glad I found this, it's really convenient!BigDog1248iOS App Store
Brilliant 2nd year of uni and wondering how I ever planned anything before this app... It may have just saved my life :DAnonymousWindows Phone
A long time coming... But well worth the wait. Love this app and can't wait for school to start so I can start using it!Yonatan WeissiOS App Store
I cannot express how fulfilling it is to see a capable app in the Store to do everything this app does. You can program in a schedule and the devs actually KNOW how schools work, not just guess.AnonymousWindows 8
This app keeps me organized and I love it. I particularly like how it gives me reminders and how it integrates with my schedule.AndreaWindows Phone
Really good, I've tried a few similar study organiser apps and this was by far my favourite :)AnonymousChrome Web Store
Seriously awesome. From the concept, to the implementation- every details has been well thought of. A solid app that actually delivers.AnonymousWindows 8
I used to be very disorganized. Always missing assignments, forgetting about tests, and almost always forgetting where my classes are. This app has helped me stay on track with exams and assignments.Jayce ComlyGoogle Play
You can really depend on this app, store your college to do, time tables and other information. It manages it well and reminds you of tasks due. Great stuff.Jakub NiemiecGoogle Play
So helpful you'd think you paid for it!Loren ThomasGoogle Play
You need to invest a little time to set it up but it is worth it. So far this has been an extremely handy way of keeping track of everything university related. The offline mode is invaluable.SofianeWindows Phone
Love it! This app helps me keep my schedule organized and helps not to forget important dates in my chaotic life! Couldn't live without it!Stephanie HaynesGoogle Play
If you hate flipping through all your syllabuses to look when assignments or exams are then this is your app.AnonymousWindows 8
Love the ui, and the features. The fact that it's free and is not overflowing with adds is awesome.Ammar MuhammadGoogle Play
Very good app to organize my work with a clean UI. Plus the cloud sync across devices is top. The best of its category, it gets the job done.JeremieWindows Phone
Great app, actually keeps me organised! Ability to use alternating weeks and simple interface really helpsOwenWindows Phone
A very good app, with all of the features needed for a good planner! Recommended for anyone at secondary and above! You can enter tests, assignments and homework. Very well made!AnonymousWindows 8
This may sound corny, but this app has changed my school life and I've never been so organized!Nicholas GerstungGoogle Play
Ever since I began using this app, I've become much more organized and on schedule with everything that I need to do. I would highly recommend this app to any student and especially college students.AnonymousWindows 8
Great! I love My Study Life!! It is the most helpful app for students!!Hannah KingGoogle Play
This app has lots of useful features that normal calendars don't. This helps me organizing tasks and I feel I get much more things done with this app.高橋渉Google Play
This app has been a life saver, no longer do I need to carry a cumbersome planner or have to switch through multiple apps to put in dates and a to-do list.NekoChan713iOS App Store
Not only is this app amazing at organizing all my class's and exams and assignments, but it's also free. And there is nothing to buy where you get it. It is by far the best study calendar I have ever had. I strongly recommend this.Alexis WilsoniOS App Store
University Life Saver. Helps you not to forget when your next class, assignment or exam is. Once you've mastered how to set your timetable it's amazing to keep you on track.marcF6iOS App Store
The app is easy to use and its made my life a lot more organised. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who struggles to keep up with deadlines.AnonymousWindows 8