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Edinburgh Campus
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The challenge of creating momentum and structure for the duration of a PhD, which is often characterised by long periods of independent work, demands effective, resilient time management skills. PhD students may find themselves careering between periods of drifting and stressful deadline driven overwork. Students often feel overwhelmed and rudderless, and struggle to prioritise or use their time efficiently and effectively. At times PhD study will overtake everything else in life, making work-life balance seem impossible, and preventing long-term career development.
Despite the challenges, it is possible to develop time management habits that will make PhD study easier and less stressful. Understanding and working with individual time management style, learning better prioritisation techniques, identifying and eliminating time thieves and reducing procrastination can help students use their time and energy more productively. This course will explore how participants can better manage their own time and understand how others manage theirs, in order to become more effective and less stressed on a day-to-day basis.
Through group exercises, personal reflection and application to real-life problems, individuals will develop a range of self-management approaches and learn practical time management techniques in order to use time effectively and maintain work-life balance. Participants will learn how to manage themselves: how to focus their energy, attention, and priorities. They will devise a personalised and, most importantly, pragmatic approach – based on a range of take-away time management tools – which will enable them to maximise and sustain their effectiveness for the duration of their PhD – and beyond.

By the end of this course participants will have:
• Understood personal time management style and its advantages and disadvantages in managing PhD study.
• Identified personal goals and priorities for PhD and life outside PhD study and explored approaches to prioritise time in line with these preferences.
• Used tools to prioritise time and energy effectively.
• Identified their key personal and environmental obstacles to good time management and devised strategies to reduce their impact.
• Appreciated how to create flexible planning approaches, in order to create effective structures for PhD work.
• Considered self-management techniques to maximise productivity in the working day.
• Devised a practical personal time management action plan to apply the course learning in successful PhD study.

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Research Futures Academy