Today@Sam Article

Professor Provides Tips To Avoid Procrastinating

Jan. 21, 2021
SHSU Media Contact: Hannah Haney

By Mikah Boyd

The start of the new year as well as a new semester has many students looking forward to times where things go back to normal. While we continue to follow COVID-19 safety protocols it is natural for some students to grow tired of “the new normal” in school.

Procrastination.squareShonn Sheng-Lun Cheng, an assistant professor of Instructional Systems Design and Technology at Sam Houston State University noticed the increase in procrastination among students when teaching an online course and developed four tips to help students stop procrastinating. He collaborated with Kui Xie of The Ohio State University to publish these tips on “The Conversation.”

Their research found that more than 70 percent of college students procrastinate, and 20 percent procrastinate consistently. This behavior has been known to lower students’ grades.

Of the four tips provided, Cheng finds that managing motivation is the key to avoiding procrastination.

“I try to find practical values in what I do,” Cheng said. “Also, I often reward myself after completing an arduous task, so I have something to look forward to in the middle of the task. Dividing a task into smaller units works very well for me. This way, I won’t get overwhelmed.”

Another one of the tips is to foster a good learning and working environment. Cheng notes that this can vary among everyone, as some may like to listen to music while they work, while others prefer absolute silence. He personally finds music or soft background noise to be helpful when his tasks are particularly monotonous.

No matter how students choose to manage their procrastination, it is important that they recognize the problem and work to eliminate the habit before it gets out of hand.

“Procrastination is never beneficial. Be strategic in what you do,” Cheng said. “Sometimes, it is not what you learn but how you learn that matters.”

To see the rest of the of the four tips or to get more information about managing procrastination, click here to read the full article.

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