English Language
Essay Time Management

Essay Time Management

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Tips for Efficient Time Management when Writing an Essay

Writing a timed essay may seem daunting, but with proper time management techniques, it can be approached with confidence and success. By creating a solid plan and adhering to it, you can ensure that all necessary steps – outlining, writing, and proofreading – are completed within the given timeframe.

Create an Outline for Your Timed Essay

Despite the limited time, it is crucial to spend 10-20% of it outlining your essay. While it may seem counterintuitive, an outline can actually speed up the writing process. By having a clear roadmap to follow, you can stay focused and organized, avoiding the struggle to come up with ideas on the spot.

Your outline should also guide the flow of your essay, ensuring that your points are logically presented and support your thesis. A basic outline could include:


  • An essay hook
  • Your thesis statement

Body Paragraphs

  • A topic sentence for each paragraph
  • Supporting evidence for each point


  • A restated thesis statement
  • A summary of findings
  • A final concluding statement

Write an Exceptional Conclusion

The purpose of a conclusion is not just to wrap up your essay, but to leave a lasting impact on the reader. Avoid generalizations and instead address any missed points or potential concerns. You can also mention how further discussion on related topics could enhance the understanding of your thesis.

Timed Essay Checklist

To effectively manage your time during a timed essay, make sure to understand the prompt and take a position supported by strong evidence. Stick to your outline to avoid wasting time and write with the final product in mind. Proofread your work for any errors before time runs out.

Brainstorming for Different Essay Types

For a synthesis essay, ensure you have a clear position and convincing supporting evidence. When writing a rhetorical analysis essay, consider the author's use of rhetoric and identify specific examples.

Examples of Timed Essay Benchmarks

For a well-paced timed essay, consider these suggested time breakdowns:

  • 5-10 minutes for outlining
  • 25-30 minutes for writing
  • 5-10 minutes for proofreading

To keep track of time, use a non-smart watch or check the available clock in the testing room. Stick to these benchmarks to stay on track and complete all steps before time is up.

Time Management for Take-Home Essays

When working on a take-home essay, good time management involves starting early and avoiding procrastination. Begin writing at least two weeks before the deadline to give yourself enough time to brainstorm, outline, write, and edit your essay.

By following these time management techniques, you can confidently approach timed essays and successfully complete them within the allotted timeframe. Remember to prioritize tasks, avoid distractions, and celebrate accomplishments while maintaining a productive mindset.

Signs That You Are Struggling with Time Management in Essay Writing

Being aware of signs of poor time management when writing an essay is crucial in order to avoid procrastination and last-minute stress.

  • You have used more than half of your allotted time but have not even started writing your essay yet. Remember, the given time is meant to be used wisely.
  • You struggle to write a significant amount each time you sit down to work on your essay, causing you to fall behind on your planned schedule.
  • Feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work left to do in the final days before the essay is due, leading to procrastination and a rushed final product.

The Disadvantages of Poor Time Management in Essay Writing

Apart from the obvious risk of not completing the essay on time, poor time management can also have other negative impacts on your work.

Rushed Essays are Full of Fluff

When time is running out, it can be tempting to add unnecessary fluff to meet the required length. However, teachers can easily spot the difference between fluff and actual content, which may result in a lower grade for not sticking to the prompt and relevant material.

Rushed Essays are Unpolished

If you do not take the time to review and edit your essay, you are more likely to make mistakes that could have been avoided. While a word processor may catch some errors, it is not entirely reliable. It is crucial to review and edit your work with a fresh perspective; taking a break from your writing and coming back to it later can help you catch any mistakes you may have missed. Giving yourself time to let your mind reset before reviewing your work is key to producing the best results.

The Importance of Proper Time Management for Essay Writing

As students, we often find ourselves overwhelmed with multiple tasks and essays to complete. In order to maintain our focus and produce quality work, it can be helpful to take breaks and switch to a different task before returning to the original one. This allows us to approach our work with a refreshed mindset and catch any errors we may have missed earlier. It is recommended to take at least 24 hours before making final edits to ensure a thorough review.

When it comes to timed essays, taking a break and returning to the essay after completing another task not only helps manage time, but also allows for a clearer mind and better writing. Poor time management can lead to rushed and incomplete essays, which may not meet college standards.

The Pitfalls of Inadequate Time Management

Many high-achieving students struggle in college not because they lack talent, but because they relied too heavily on their natural abilities in high school and never developed good time management habits. Whether it is studying, doing homework, or writing an essay, it is important to start managing time effectively from the beginning.

The Advantages and Benefits of Good Time Management in Essay Writing

By properly budgeting our time, we can avoid the pitfalls of poor time management and produce well-written, polished essays. This skill is not only valuable in college, but also in any professional setting. While it may seem like we are simply managing time for an essay, in reality, we are developing a skill that will greatly benefit us in the future.

Effective Strategies for Managing Essay Time

When it comes to timed essays, it is crucial to follow a checklist that includes understanding the prompt, taking a position, creating an outline, writing clearly, and proofreading. Breaking down our time into specific benchmarks, such as spending 20% of our time on outlining and preparing a thesis statement, 70% on writing, and 10% on proofreading and improving, can help us stay on track and ensure a well-structured and well-written essay.

For take-home essays, it is important to start early and balance our work with other responsibilities. Removing distractions, such as our phone, and leaving time at the end for thorough proofreading can also be helpful. As a reward for completing our work, it is okay to treat ourselves, but it is important not to overdo it and lose valuable time.

Effective Time Management for Timed Essays

When it comes to writing a timed essay, managing our time efficiently is key. To make the most of the limited time we have, it is recommended to allocate 20% for planning, 70% for writing, and 10% for proofreading and improving. To keep track of our progress, we can use a clock or a non-smart wristwatch.

Planning is the foundation of a successful essay. Spending 20% of our time on this stage allows us to brainstorm ideas, create outlines, and organize our thoughts. This will ultimately save us time in the long run and result in a more cohesive and well-structured essay.

Once we have a solid plan in place, we can move on to the writing stage, which should take up 70% of our total time. During this stage, it is important to focus and stay on track. Avoid getting sidetracked by distractions and make use of the outline created during the planning stage to guide the writing process.

The final 10% of our time should be dedicated to proofreading and improving our essay. This is where we can catch any errors or typos and make necessary revisions to strengthen our arguments and improve the overall flow of our writing.

In Conclusion

Time management is not only essential for writing a successful timed essay, but it is also a crucial skill to develop for future academic and professional endeavors. By following effective strategies and staying on track with our time, we can avoid the common mistakes that come with poor time management and ultimately achieve success in our writing tasks. So remember, plan, write, and proofread – and you'll be one step closer to mastering the art of timed essays.

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