- October 15, 2023
- Posted by: Igbaji Chinwendu
- Category: Project Writing Guide
Research project timeline -Effective Time Management Techniques for Completing Academic Projects in Nigeria
Research, a very powerful but essential tool that leads man towards progress, can be constrained by time factors. In the quest for finding a new outcome to an existing problem, research may take a dimension that is not anticipated. This, therefore, makes research a boring experience, resulting in a loss of precious time unplanned if attended to in an unnecessary way.
Research is a crucial part of academic and professional life that must be undertaken, but managing it with other obligations, duties, and responsibilities becomes difficult. Therefore, time management is very important in research to achieve goals and succeed without losing any other responsibility besides research. In this article, we will explore the tips for effective time management Techniques for Completing Academic Projects in Nigeria. These tips are as discussed below:
Effective Time Management Techniques for Completing Academic Projects in Nigeria
1. Choose a topic that is research-worthy
Many great topics are available to research, but understanding the topic chosen in line with the time factor is very important. I have encountered students who want to conduct a research project, e.g. on the causes of building failure in Nigeria. Now, looking at such a topic is great, but it can take a student many years to accomplish. Take note: a student project is aimed to be rounded up in six months. Therefore, such a topic should be narrowed down to a case study of the particular place of interest.
2. Choose a feasible topic
Some topics are more feasible than others. For example, if you choose a topic that you want to disapprove of the existence of HIV/AIDS, I bet you that it will be a waste of time as such, you will not have any luck. Therefore, there is a need to make sure that the topic of interest can be researched and is feasible to do.
3. Plan the project
Now, after choosing a research-worthy but feasible topic, the next thing is to sit down, make a research plan, and adopt a research technique or strategy. The technique or strategy adopted includes goals in which your conceptual and theoretical framework must be known, deadlines for each step, objectives, due dates, and benchmarks. The process will be smooth and easy if the researcher follows his plan. Planning can keep a researcher organized, helping him to prevent last-minute rushes.
4. Outline the scope.
The project’s scope is an important thing to know for the researcher. Its usefulness cannot be overstated. The universe may be the subject of studies, while the research time can be reduced with accurate limit definition! Therefore, an expected scope must be understood before the beginning of the research. Even in the laboratory experimental aspect of the research, the project scope must be established first before undertaking the research.
5. List the steps
The steps involved in your project plan must be listed. Split the steps into smaller components and focus on each one in detail. This will be guided by your supervisor’s interest and direction, which are crucial in determining the necessary measures. In the plan listed, each step must be ranked according to its significance and worth during the research. From the ranked steps, one can see that some steps are more important than others.
6. Time schedule
Making a time schedule is one of the most crucial things to accomplish before starting your paper. Writing a project involves numerous duties, such as developing a thesis, gathering the necessary data, drafting the paper, etc.,; it should take more time. You must divide the time allotted for your project report among several tasks. If you have, for instance, a three-month deadline for your project work, plan to write, for example, your project introduction for the first ten to fifteen days, gather supporting materials for your project for the next fifteen days, and then write and edit your article for the remaining days.
Student’s Projects must be completed within the allocated time. In some institutions, six months for undergraduates and a minimum of one year for post-graduate school is allocated as time for project completion. Students must work tirelessly to accomplish such a set task. To do this, it is recommended that a time-blocking is designed in a paper against each week or month in which a specific task must be carried out towards the accomplishment of the project work.
Such time must be allotted to the steps specified in the research plan activities. As such, there must be a time for literature review, data collection-whether primary, secondary or tertiary data, data analysis, and project writing. These methods of having a time-blocking design have proven to be very helpful in helping researchers achieve success without missing steps.
7. Time Drain
A student’s performance in an academic setting is frequently assessed by the calibre of the project they deliver in a given amount of time. Therefore, time is crucial in research output in a tertiary institution setting. Furthermore, efficient time management significantly affects a person’s performance as a researcher.
But there are some of the things that drain time in a project writing exercise. They are lack of discipline, procrastination and attending to interruptions. These three seem too conjoined but can work separately. Discipline, the capacity to focus on an assignment despite interruptions, has characteristics associated with it, such as diligence and perseverance.
Thus, an absence of discipline is a loss of drive to ignore interruptions by using effort and perseverance. The act of an unnecessary delay or postponement of a crucial undesirable task in favour of a more enjoyable but lower-priority task is addressed as procrastination. A common starting point of procrastination is responding to a job disruption followed by an absence of discipline to keep your attention on the initial task.
Because of disruption and loss of concentration, it is easier to be interrupted and procrastinate, which starts the cycle over again. An interruption is the brief termination of an action with a goal that diverts attention from the intended purpose.
For young early researchers, sources of interruptions can include phone calls, WhatsApp, YouTube, TikTok, email, text or instant messages, or visits by a colleague, parting, etc. Finally, the intersection of procrastination, attention to distractions, and a lack of discipline leads to tasks that frequently fail to contribute to the original aim and necessitates more time being spent reorienting to the original work.
Strategies for Time Management
Setting aside time for things that will progress goals is known as time management. Several time management techniques can reduce procrastination and distractions and improve discipline, especially when engaging in research tasks. Monitoring, goal-setting, prioritizing, planning, assigning tasks, and time-tracking are examples of time management techniques.
- Monitoring: Keeping a journal detailing how you use your time while working on the project you have allotted the time for. In addition, List frequent instances of your interruption-proneness, procrastination, and discipline-related bad behaviours.
- Setting Goals: Decide on and write down all the objectives you want to accomplish. Each objective should have a time limit within which the objective will be obtained. On your recorded objectives, choose the ones that are directly under your control and reasonably researchable within the time frame you have.
- Prioritizing: When all the objectives that must be accomplished in a certain amount of time have been determined, put them in order of importance. As soon as possible, start working on your most important objective and continue doing so until you’ve reached it or have temporarily used up all of your resources to do so.
- Planning: Make daily “to-do” lists each day and cross off items you have completed. Create your daily “to-do” lists and mark off what you finish each day. Activities should be broken down into manageable pieces for the time available. Use all of your time effectively.
- Delegating: Decide which of your research plans you alone can perform and which can be handled by your trusted assistant. Learn to assign all or a portion of the work that doesn’t require your full involvement, such as laboratory experiments that cannot be conducted in your school laboratory due to lack of equipment.