Get the Powers to Act from Fresh Ideas

May 17, 2013

"How to Win at College"

"How to Win at College," by Cal Newport, 2005, is full of useful and practical tips for students. Here I share tips on Time Management, When to Quit and Memory.

Time management

  1. Block out obligations.
  2. Assign hour-long blocks to specific projects.
  3. Set aside at least one block for slack and emergencies.
  4. When knocked off your schedule, re-organize your blocks.
  5. Time blocking is more effective than daily todo lists.

When to quit

Define "Productive" as efficiently accomplishable and in a reasonable amount of time.

If you're sure you won't be able to solve it without outside/extra information/help,

or if you can't specify a time frame within which you will be able to solve it,

or if you've put in a long time but you are still unable to finish it off,

then, you should give up.


  1. Quiz and Recall : Make yourself recall specific information.
  2. While reviewing or reading, jot down your recall questions.
  3. Then, quiz.
  4. Then, articulate with emotions, using multi-senses etc.
This Quiz and Recall technique has the same effect as TDD (Test-Driven Development) or TFD (Test-First Development) in software development. You are very clear about your objectives and you are also very clear about whether you've made it or not.


  1. Quiz & Recall is a very efficient memory technique.

  2. There are other nice memory methods too.