2015 wasn’t bad, but 2016 can be even better! Check out these student life hacks, which cover everything from studying to home decorating, and use them to get off to a great start.
1. Create a high-powered wake-up call
Worried you’ll sleep through your alarm before an early morning tutorial? All you need to do is pop your phone into a glass, and the sound will be amplified so you’ll get a really loud wake-up call. Just make sure the glass is empty before you do it…
2. Add your timetable to your phone lock screen
Always forgetting where you’re meant to be and when? Take a snapshot of your timetable with your phone, and then save it as the wallpaper on your lock screen. That way, you’ll have to look at your schedule every time you want to use your phone, so it’ll always be at the front of your mind.
3. Design a study incentive scheme
Studying getting you down? Why not reward yourself as you move onto each new topic or chapter with your favourite treat? Pro tip: think small things like gummy bears rather than full-sized chocolate bars – your waistline will thank you.
4. Take breaks every 25 minutes
Regular breaks from your work will keep your mind fresh. According to the Pomodoro Technique, the best way is to work in 25-minute intervals, and have short rest periods in between to stay focused on the task in hand.
5. Ace your next presentation
Nervous about an impending class presentation? Get one of your friends to ask you a question you’ve already prepared for, and then deliver your answer in style. Your confidence will be boosted, and so will your grades…
6. Create an easy visual reference system
During class, take your notes using different coloured pens. You can use a unique colour for every subject or topic, and this will make your notes easier to find when you need to revisit them during your exam period.
7. Use Times New Roman to type your notes
When you’re typing up your notes for class, make sure you use size 12 Times New Roman font, as it’s been proven to be the fastest to read. This will save you precious time when you’re studying for your next exam. But maybe leave it off your CV…
8. Clean your keyboard with a post-it note
Is your computer keyboard covered in crumbs after you ate your lunch at your desk? Just grab a spare post-it note and rub the sticky side along the keys. It’ll collect all of the dust and dirt, and your keyboard will look as good as new.
9. Make breakfast effortless
You’d be surprised by how easy it is to make breakfast in a mug. Take scrambled eggs, for instance – just add the eggs and some milk, butter and seasoning into your favourite cup, and give it a quick microwave. In just a few minutes, you’ll be left with a great meal!
10. Make last night’s pizza taste delicious again
Lucky enough to have some pizza slices leftover from last night’s takeaway? Microwave them with a glass of water, and they’ll taste as good as they did when you first ordered, minus the dreaded chewy crusts!
11. Easily find sources for your next essay
While it’s true you shouldn’t use Wikipedia directly as a source for essays, you can use it to speed up your research. Just scroll to the bottom of the Wikipedia page for your chosen field and click into the handy list of references there – you’ll have all the information you need in a few seconds.
12. Use binder clips to stack bottles
When you’re sharing a fridge with housemates, you really need to keep it neat and tidy. A great way to store loose bottles is to hold them in place using binder clips. Attach a clip to the racks inside the fridge and stack the bottles in, leaning against the clip. It really is that easy!
13. Quickly cool your bottled drinks
If you need to cool down your drinks in a flash, just wet a tea towel or some kitchen roll and wrap it around the bottles. Then, chill them all in your fridge for 15 minutes or so, and you’ll have an ice-cold beverage waiting for you when you get back.
14. Keep your fridge clean with cling film
It’s really common for students to shirk cleaning the communal fridge in a shared home. So save time (and friendships) by covering the shelves in a few sheets of cling film. When things get a bit sticky, just whip it all off and put some fresh bits down again – you’ll never have to scrub again!
15. Hang photos using washi tape
In student accommodation, it’s very easy to lose your deposit if you use things like Blu-Tack or Sellotape to stick your posters to the wall. Washi tape leaves zero residue, and comes in a whole load of fun colours so you can frame your photos in style.
16. Easily get your hands on PowerPoint slides
Found yourself having to do some last-minute revision, or lost your notes? Don’t worry. Just type your subject matter into Google, followed by ‘filetype:ppt’. You’ll immediately get your hands on PowerPoint slides full of notes, completely free of charge.