There are things that some graduate students do that make them stand out from the crowd. From time management to approach to learning, here are some ways you can get the most out of your graduate school experience.
Great graduate students:
1. Create a schedule and stick to it -
Success in school starts with good time management. So many other priorities, such as family, friends, work and a healthy lifestyle, compete for your attention. All of these things are important to your happiness, success and well-being so don’t discount their place in your day. Create a schedule that includes not only what you have to do, but also the activities that keep you healthy and happy. This may seem difficult but even if you schedule only 10 minutes a day for leisure reading, a short walk or yoga, you are still giving yourself time to focus on you and 10 minutes is better than nothing.
2. Network and make connections -
Your time in graduate is not only about learning. It is also about building professional relationships and developing connections with peers, professors and people in your industry. These connections will not only be important resources when you are looking for a job after graduation or applying to another graduate program, they will also be an essential support system while you are school. Your peers will understanding what you are going through and can be your sounding board when you are having a difficult time, professional connections in your field can offer perspective that can help you see the light at the end of the tunnel, and professors have gone through it themselves and have helped many others go through it also so they can offer invaluable advice.
3. Make learning a priority rather than just going through the motions –
When you have a lot to get done it can be tempting to just get through reading and assignments as quickly as possible. Although this approach may seem logical, it is short-sighted and will not benefit you in the long run. As part of this, always write your own work and cite every source you use creating that work. Plagiarism is a serious offense and the repercussions are not worth the time it saves students.
4. Apply what they learn in school to real world situations –
Take advantage of opportunities to volunteer, work as a graduate assistant and complete internships. Not only will this provide you with a valuable chance to practice what you are learning and receive feedback that will help you hone your skills, it will also serve as a networking opportunity that could help you advance your career.
5. Are willing to question previous beliefs and consider new ways of doing things –
Do not get stuck in mindset that the way you have always done things and what you have always believed is correct. Be willing and open to considering new ideas and alternate viewpoints. Learning provides an opportunity to identify and embrace new approaches and perspectives. Taking advantage of this opportunity to grow and open new doors.