Study tips for the Christmas holidays

The holidays are here but it’s still a great time to catch up, get ahead or stay on top of university work. That’s not to say we don’t need downtime as well, but that it’s an excellent time to get on top of things without the pressure of classes and lectures. With that in mind, here are some of our study tips to help make the most of the Christmas holidays.

Make a study plan

Make a plan for what you need to do and when you plan to do it. Even if some things take longer or you don’t stick to it rigidly, it will help you to spread your workload out so you don’t end up feeling stressed out at the last minute. A little and often will make it much more manageable amidst the festivities.

Set a particular time for studying every day

Whether it’s first thing in the morning so you can head out and enjoy the afternoon, or when it’s getting dark early, but it’s not time to settle in for the night, set aside a particular time for studying each day. Tell your family that during that time you need to be left alone, and when the time is up, close the books/computer and go and have fun. Having a routine might not feel a lot like a holiday pastime, but it will help to prevent you from being distracted, it will help you manage your time effectively, and it will help make it easier to manage others’ expectations of you.

Have breaks

Having done those things, then go and enjoy yourself. You don’t have to dedicate whole days or weeks of the Christmas holidays to studying.

Dedicate a space to studying  

If you can, dedicate a space to studying – somewhere that you know you can get your head down and concentrate. It might be at home, or you might find it easier to take yourself off to a coffee shop or local library for a while to separate your work from your downtime and to really help you concentrate.

Don’t leave it to the last minute

It’s so easy to get home, crash land on the sofa and immediately turn your attention to chilling out, but if you make your study plan from day one, then it will help keep stress at bay. Staying on top of things will help you stay motivated and get things done!

Check library opening times 

On a practical note, if you need anything from a local library or want to go and study there, check out any seasonal opening times that could disrupt your plans. Even if it’s a coffee shop you want to study in, keep an eye out so you don’t waste your time.

Read for the joy of it

While studying for coursework or exams is important, it’s also important to remember what it’s like to enjoy reading a good book! If you don’t have the headspace to explore something new, maybe return to an old favourite and read simply for the joy of it!

Be realistic

Make your study plans and be self-motivated to get things done, but also be realistic about your time and what can be achieved – both on an individual day and over the holidays as a whole. It’s only a few weeks and demands on your time are likely to be high. So, make that plan, do what you need to do, and try not to sweat the small stuff!

Read our university student checklist!