If you see a whole thing - it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. - Ursula K. LeGuin

Friday, January 25, 2008

Protecting Time

What with the new year and new semester, there has been a lot of talk in the blogworld about schedules. People have been busy creating schedules and figuring how to keep research or writing time sacred. I came up with my own variation on a workable schedule and I've been trying to stick to it.

My schedule has me teaching Mon & Wed afternoons and Tuesday evenings. I've delegated Tues & Thurs mornings to research/writing (done mostly at home). I've delegated all day Fridays to research/writing & the occasional class prep (preferably at home). Wed mornings are meetings (service-related only).

This schedule gives me Mon morning and late afternoon and Tues, Wed & Thurs afternoons, to schedule other meetings (service/student/project-related) as well as prep, grade, and do various assorted tasks that pile up during the week. I think that's a reasonable amount of time to leave open. Of course they are not permanently open. They get filled as I get requests for meetings and if you want to be on my calendar I generally need a week or two's notice. Again, I think this is reasonable.

The difficulty comes when large groups need to coordinate their calendars for a meeting. In the past, when it would became apparent that the meeting could not take place within a week or two without someone caving, I would cave and give up my research/writing/at home time. The semester has been in swing for two weeks and I have not caved. What has happened instead? No meeting. I'm thinking this new approach is beneficial in more ways than one.

1 comment:

Dr. Bad Ass said...

I'm so with you on the need to protect your time. I've got a higher teaching load than research, which means that I can really only reserve one day a week -- Friday. And I have to WORK HARD to keep it reserved. Otherwise it will fill up with doc student committee meetings, department task forces, etc. So we must stick to our guns.