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Managing your university workload

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Published: 5 July 2021

Student studying

As a student, you probably know better than anyone just how much of a commitment it takes to get your degree.

But, as big a deal as it can feel sometimes, it’s important to remember that worrying about your workload can lead to stress and anxiety which just adds to your concerns.

In this article, we wanted to give you some advice everyone should think about while working on their degree.


When you start your course, you’ll get loads of information to go through. Some of the most important are the dates of classes and deadlines for assignments.

As soon as you receive all this, write it down in a planner or update your digital calendar and set reminders so you don’t forget.

Plus, you can put extracurricular activities in there like societies, short courses or Student Ambassador meetings.

Planning ahead means not being surprised by upcoming deadlines.

But if you think you’ll forget to check your calendar, you might want to try using sticky notes too.

You can put them anywhere you like in your home or even on your laptop to make sure you stay on top of things.

Get ahead

One of the best way of avoiding workload stress is to do as much as you can in advance.

That’s where your planner in the previous section comes in handy. Go through it and, regardless of when a task is due, just start working on it.

That way you’ll have control over your assignments and avoid the typical rush to get something in the night before the deadline.

Plus, you’ll get a lot more free time which is handy if you have a job, kids, commitments or just need a moment to yourself.

Take breaks

That brings on to our next piece of advice: make sure you rest.

There will be times during your university experience where you’ll need to work really hard.

When this happens, you have to make sure you plan in breaks as well, otherwise, you’ll ‘burn out'.

This is when you exhaust yourself and can’t do the things you need to.

Take a short break every now and then, making sure you’re doing something that makes you happy and, preferably, takes you away from the screen.

Try going for a walk outside, meditating, eating something delicious or whatever might make you happy.

If you want some advice on this, why not speak with our Health and Wellbeing Team.

Let yourself enjoy your time here

University can and should be a really brilliant experience. It’s not always about studying as hard as you can and spending all your time in the Library.

Sometimes, you can give yourself permission to relax too.

Go out with your friends, explore the amazing things to do in Canary Wharf and just find time for yourself.

You’ll want to look back at your university experience with pride in the amount you achieved, but also great memories of the things you experienced too.

Have a routine

Building small, easy to achieve habits are a great way of centring yourself and making your daily life a little easier.

Whether that’s always having a cup of coffee first thing in the morning, going for a run or meeting up with friends on the weekend, find the things that will help you feel grounded.

It’s completely normal to get stressed sometimes at University. But that worry should not impact your studies, your mental health or your experience.

If you feel like you need to talk to someone about stress during your studies, make an appointment to speak with our Health and Wellbeing team.

Get in touch through Compass, email them at or call on 0207 531 7343. Find out more by following #WeAreSunLon on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.