10 Ways to Managing Your Course Load

By Jane Hurst

Managing a heavy course load can be difficult, but it can be done. You don’t have to let it stress you out, and you can make great grades, no matter how much you have on your plate at any given time. In order to manage your course load, there are certain habits that you should start getting into in order to make sure that you get everything done without taking on more stress than you can handle.

  1. Supplement Your Learning – When there are so many different sources of information out there, it is crazy not to take advantage of them. Don’t just use the materials given by your professors. Think outside of the box, and find information sources that will help to supplement your learning and give you an edge that those who don’t use these sources don’t have.
  2. Stay One Step Ahead – It is a good idea to be a step ahead of your professors. Read the chapters before lectures, so you have a good idea of what will be going on, and you will get in some extra studying. Now, the lectures will be more like reviews instead of introductions to new ideas.
  3. Take Plenty of Notes – All students know that it is important to take lots of notes. But, not all students take notes the right way. Be sure to take notes both during and after lectures. The notes you take during the lecture will get the ideas into your head, and later notes will help you to expand on those ideas.
  4. Work Hard – You really do need to bring your A-game when you are managing a heavy course load. Always be sure to get assignments completed at least a few days before they are due. That way, you won’t end up stressing out because you have to cram in order to get things done.
  5. Practice Makes Perfect – When you learn new things, try to put your new-found knowledge to use in everyday situations. Practice really does make perfect, and the more you use your knowledge, the better you are going to be at it. Look at your textbooks for the chapter review sections you can use to test yourself, re-do old exams, etc.
  6. Learn how to Relax – In order to be able to study and learn, you need to be relaxed. Take some time for yourself. Read books, articles, etc. that have nothing to do with what you are studying. Some cool sites to check out during your rest and relaxation periods include BuzzFeed, Prettymotors, and Upworthy and Cracked.
  7. Don’t Overextend Yourself – Many students have the tendency to stretch themselves way too thin, and they end up getting stressed out because they have taken on more than they can handle. Don’t do this to yourself. If you don’t think you can handle a heavy course load, cut back on the classes you are taking.
  8. Find Out the Core of the Problem – If you are having trouble keeping up with your course load, you need to figure out why. It may be that you are not dividing up your time properly for each course. Once you know what the problem is, you can work on ways to eliminate it.
  9. Fix the Problem – Solving the problem mentioned above is often easier said than done. It may be that you have to lighten your course load a bit in order to be able to excel in your studies. This doesn’t mean that you can’t handle the work. It just means that you are smart enough to know what you need to do in order to get the best grades.
  10. Get Organized – This is a pretty obvious tip, but an important one. Set aside certain times each day for study, recreation, rest, etc. The better organized you are, the better you are going to be able to handle a heavy course load.


Jane Hurst has been working in education for over 5 years as a teacher. She loves sharing her knowledge with students, is fascinated about edtech and loves reading, a lot. Follow Jane on Twitter

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