O'Dowd Student News and Muse

The Crozier

O'Dowd Student News and Muse

The Crozier

O'Dowd Student News and Muse

The Crozier

A Disorganized Student’s Guide to Getting Organized

A messy array of papers

“Shoot! I forgot to do my homework. Oh no! I also lost the assignment I did last class. Wait…there’s a test today on rhetorical devices? I’m screwed!”

Unfortunately, school has started, and this means many students are striving to get and maintain good grades in their classes. Sadly, organization is necessary for getting good grades (even though it’s a pain.) And even though my backpack is a disaster at the moment, here are several ways that you, and I, can attempt to stay organized throughout the year.

Number 1, folders. Organizing your work in folders is one of the best ways to keep track of your papers. Do I do it? No. Should I? Probably. I have lost so many papers, and found them 3 months later crumbled, ripped and destroyed at the bottom of my backpack. If I had just taken the extra 10 seconds to put the paper in my folder, I would not have had a missing assignment or had to explain to my parents why my grade dropped 5%. Anyways, just take those extra couple seconds and put the paper in that classes folder, it will save you a lot of stress and you will always know where to find your assignment.

Number 2, a pencil case. Freshman year I had a little bit of a situation. One day when I opened my backpack, all my materials were purple, goopy and sticky. My purple marker and that half eaten granola bar from months ago had gotten all over my materials. I was disgusted and for the rest of the year I would have to use my gross supplies. This was a result of me shoving all my pencils and materials back into my backpack in random places. Not only would people get annoyed at me that I never had the materials I needed for class, but my materials would get really disgusting. So if you want to keep track of all your materials and keep them in good shape, get a pencil case AND keep using it. When you’re done with a material, put it back into the pencil case (unless of course you want your materials to get dirty and lost.)

Number 3, your planner. When you write down all your work and upcoming tests that you have in a planner, you will avoid panicking 5 minutes before your next class because you forgot to do your homework or forgot you had a test in polynomials. I have started writing all of my work down on a google doc and I highly recommend as easy alternative to a planner.

Lastly, JUST KEEP YOUR BACKPACK ORGANIZED. Put your things in the correct pocket, put your work back in folders and put your materials back in your pencil case. Do I do this? No, but hopefully this article will convince me to start. Furthermore, I have realized it’s probably more work to dig my backpack for 5 minutes to find something then follow these tips.

Bottom line: stay organized and you won’t lose your sanity forgetting about or losing work like me. With these tips under your belt, you will never have to blame your dog ever again.

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  • D

    Damian BarnesSep 11, 2023 at 8:42 am

    Thank you for sharing your story and these great tips, Ashley! If students would like help organizing themselves, they are welcome to come to the Academic Support Department!

  • P

    PeytonSep 6, 2023 at 2:15 pm

    I truly appreciate thesetips! I think that the title is extremely witty and reels me right in. I especially love the relatable aspects of this article because it gives me something to connect to on a deeper level. I will definitely be purchasing folders, a pencil case, and a planner this year. Can’t wait to read more articles by Ashley Carroll!