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How Adults Can Prepare to Go Back to School

Women studying online with small child

How can working adults get ready to return to school without getting stressed? And how can they make sure their families are prepared for their transition back into student life? At Virginia College, our students are often juggling a full-time job and family responsibilities, making them master multi-taskers.

Here are a few of their tips for other working adults planning to go back to school:

Create a family calendar.

This is one school supply that’s essential for adult learners balancing their own busy schedules with their family’s schedule. Sit down with your family and talk about your schedules before your classes start. Who is picking up the kids from school and taking them to practice each day? Who is cooking dinner? Assign everyone roles and responsibilities in advance so you can share the workload and have enough time to focus on your studies.

Set up a recurring study time each night and stick to it.

It can be easy to put off studying, so set up a designated time when you and your family know that you’ll be focusing on your work. This way, your family can hold you accountable and make sure you’re getting your work done, and you can enjoy an uninterrupted period when you can focus on your schoolwork.

Download our sample time management worksheet to get started mapping out your study time.

Treat yourself.

As you think about planning for your return to school, don’t forget to make room for downtime. No matter how busy you are, it’s important to take time for yourself. Keep up with your hobbies and interests, and reward yourself for jobs well done by doing something you enjoy.

Most importantly, as you return to school, remember what you’re going to get out of this experience. By pursuing a degree or diploma, you’re bettering your own life and the lives of your family members. You’re setting a great example for your kids, and you’re showing that education is critical to success. Instead of fearing the term “back-to-school,” get excited. Your hard work will pay off.

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