|A fantastic and useful online tool to calculate the time you need to complete|
a research assignment without the stress and headache of procrastination
|In this example, I entered a deadline of |
November 30, 2010 (click on image to enlarge)
The best of these in my opinion is the University of Minnesota's Assignment Calculator with the tag line, "You can beat the clock!" Simply visit the site, enter the date you are given the assignment, the date the assignment is due, and then select the appropriate subject area of the research (in the screen shot above, I selected "Art and Art History." Press the "Calculate Assignment Schedule" and voila!, you are presented with a clear path and a reasonable timeline to finish the assignment.
|Note that with each step in the process, you|
are given an approximate date to keep you on track
With each step, you are provided with tasks to complete and linked to useful online tutorials about how to define your topic, how to begin the process of outlining, and when and how to start writing. Over the years, many universities have quietly adapted the Minnesota calculator and added other useful functions. I especially like the UCLA version of the Assignment Calculator since it addresses the concerns of ESL (English as a Second Language) students, brainstorming techniques, links to resources on citation styles and highlights modules on learning the difference between scholarly and popular sources of information. I suggest using both calculators to access and combine the weekly suggestions and tasks. You can also download a version of Assignment Calculator for your desktop and use it when you do not have access to the Internet.
P.S. For masters and doctoral students, I highly recommend the Dissertation Calculator-- it is one of the only online tools that actually walks PhD students through the mystical process!
|For Masters and PhD students, the Dissertation Calculator |
provides some direction over the long haul
Remember, start early, and avoid the pitfalls of late nights and even later papers and assignments. Your time is precious, don't waste it procrastinating. How many all-nighters did it take me in my first and second years to figure this out? Too many! Trust me on that one.