Assignment Time: A Progressive Journal

Assignments: the scourge of studying at uni. Well, not really, since at least you have unlimited time at your disposal to finish them, right? Wrong. So, assignments: gift or curse? This semester, I’m leaning towards curse, having my assignments due at the end of semester. Sure, it seems great to start off with, like you have the whole semester ahead of you before they’re due. Only later do you realise these assignments have eaten into your revision time for your encroaching exams. Because these end of semester assignments aren’t an alternative to exams, no sir. They’re in addition. This is my journey from acknowledgement, to procrastination, to progress, and, finally, to submission.

Week 1

Monday: Realise I have another assignment on top of the other assignments and assorted uni work I have to get through. A feeling of combined dread and preemptive exhaustion ensues.
Tuesday: Continue working on other assignment due next week, deciding to ignore other encroaching due date.
Wednesday: Have to work all day. Convince myself that uni work will not be productive after a tiring day. Proceed to watch three episodes of Charmed instead.
Thursday: Sleep in. Go to class in the afternoon. Feeling tired, but soldier on to my late-night German class. Get home and go straight to bed. Enough work for one day, OK?
Friday: Class in the morning. Work on other assignments until go to work. No more productivity today.

Weekend: Have to work both days, but manage to see this as a positive since I now have allocated time to study so I’ll be more productive, right? Wrong. Dealt with cranky customers at work, come home and take refuge with junk food in front of the TV. Word cutting for my assignment due on Monday proves time-consuming. Finally, on Sunday night this assignment is under the word limit and ready to submit. Unfortunately, the assessable tutorial question for Monday morning is not.

Week 2

Monday: Decide that getting up early will be worth it to get my tutorial question done. Conclude that since the assignment is due today, the other people in my tutorial probably will be in the same predicament as me, so a little preparation will be worth it to gain the brownie points necessary for a good participation grade. My theory turns out to be correct, so win for me. Assignment is successfully submitted, one down, two to go. Decide I deserve a well-earned break, so hibernate from all things assessment.
Tuesday: Still feeling the after-assignment euphoria, I decide that I am still deserving of a break after class. Proceed to suppress all sources of guilt and stress regarding assessment in favour of the season 4 Charmed finale (and of course the first episode of season 5).
Wednesday: Realise my “well-deserved break” excuse is becoming a bit flimsy. Make myself a hearty breakfast of eggs benedict under the delusion that this will fuel the brain’s productivity for the day. Proceed to read the criteria sheet before deciding that multi-tasking with Charmed would be the clever thing to do to keep thought directed. Unfortunately, it’s not, so I head off for a night of work having accomplished next to nought.
Thursday: Realise how inconvenient it is going to be that half of this assignment has to be done using a program only available at uni. Spend the morning whinging about said inconvenience, but make the effort to go to uni early today to make some progress.

Friday: Decide my day is too busy to possibly fit in any assignment work, feeling only slightly guilty for now.
Weekend: Get started on another assignment that can be done at home, as going to uni and work in the one day is just not something you do on the weekend.

Week 3

Monday: The gap between my early class and my lecture: the perfect time to make a start on this assignment beyond the criteria sheet.
Tuesday: A free morning means the part A essay is underway. The research, at least, but any start is a good start.
Wednesday: Juggling between this assignment and another, all in all quite a productive day. But by the time evening comes, it’s time to reward myself with some Charmed. Unfortunately, that spells the death of productivity for the day.
Thursday: The only thing productive to come out of today is a lengthy conversation about how assignments that must be done at uni are, in fact, a conspiracy to increase lecture attendance. A coincidence this forced attendance coincides with the onset of Winter (and, of course, the matching attendance drop in any but mid-day classes)? I think not. But ten points for trying.
Friday: Turn up bright and on time to my early class, boding well for a good day. Turns out class is cancelled. But all is not lost! This means a morning of assignmenting at uni, which I will thank myself for later.
Weekend: Feeling confident in my progress, I decide that my other impending assignment is in more dire need of attention. The flip-side of this is when I come to realise that my otherwise-fully-written part A simply does not “fit”. Despite the information being there, flow is simply not happening. Quickly tiring of this tedium, I trudge to bed deciding to leave it to the forces of fortune to bring me inspiration and a fresh mind in the morning.

Week 4

Monday: Finally, the day is here. At the end of the day, this assignment will officially be out of my hair, one way or another. True, Part A is still only partially written, having not been finalised yet. Being the dedicated *cough* desperate but knowledgeable student I am, I head to uni early in the interests of securing myself a computer. It turns out that the library is almost dead at 9 o’clock on a Monday morning, good for me. Also, it turns out that you can get coffee really quickly so early, another win. I should go to uni early more often! Wishful thinking. But, armed with a jumbo coffee and a computer, I finish and submit my assignment, proving that early mornings can be productive.

Ah, the relief, it is done. And for what? To do it all again next week, of course.

Everyone dreads end of semester assignments, right?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *