How To: Tutor Your Students In Time Management

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How To: Tutor Your Students In Time Management

Why time management is important and how tutors can influence the development of this skill.

As a tutor, it’s important to recognize the value in teaching students skills beyond scholastic subject matter — skills that will help them succeed both academically, as well as in life. One such trait, time management, is crucial for students to develop in order to complete assignments on time, get through exams in their entirety, and even make tutoring sessions more effective. Read on to learn more about why student time management is important and how you can influence the development of this skill.

Why time management is important for students
  • On-Time Assignment Completion: the most obvious benefit of time management is the improved ability to complete assignments in a timely manner. When grades are docked simply due to unfulfilled deadlines, it’s harder to see where your student could really use the most focus. Eliminating lateness keeps grades reflective of academic performance alone.

  • Academic Stress Reduction: stress can negatively impact health, social behavior, mood and, importantly, academic performance. Advancement of time management skills has been shown to decrease stress levels, allowing students to focus their energy on enhancing grades and overall wellbeing.

  • Decision-Making Improvement: when pressed for time, it’s common to make impulsive and careless decisions. Thoughtful and deliberate consideration of problems takes time and leads to better decision-making.

  • Task Prioritization: the ability to prioritize effectively is an important life skill that translates far beyond the classroom. This goes hand-in-hand with time management, as determining the most efficient order of task completion requires planning.

How to tutor students in time management skills
  • Create Schedules and Routines: create schedules with your students and adhere to a routine during each lesson. Assist in filling out planners and align your tutoring sessions with the class syllabus to ensure they stay on track.

  • Set Checkpoints: set deadlines at regular intervals as checkpoints, especially during long assignments. Breaking a project up into smaller parts is easier to digest and gives students a clearer way to track the items they have completed and those that are still outstanding. Researchers at the University of Reading found that identifying and completing “small achievable targets” are one of the most effective ways to break a cycle of procrastination (Shahabudin, et al. 2010).

  • Collaborate on To-Do Lists: work with your students to create to-do lists for subjects or assignments so they can easily visualize outstanding tasks. Go through the list in terms and help them practice prioritization so they learn how to determine which items require attention first, and help them understand why some aren’t as immediately pressing.

  • Utilize Timers: it may be useful to use a stopwatch or timer during tutoring sessions for students to practice pacing and better estimate how long tasks can take. You can also take this opportunity to tutor techniques for maximizing use of time, such as math problem shortcuts. This is especially important for students who are preparing for tests.


Time management is just as important for tutors as it is for students. Join today so you can spend your time focusing on sessions while Clark takes care of the rest.