Online course Time Management for PhD students

Time-manage yourself and your PhD


Managing your PhD and your own working behaviour is not always easy. You have to manage your projects and experiments, write your articles, teach students, participate in meetings and presumably you have to do lots of other things that may not even be related to your PhD project. You may find it difficult to decide what to work on, to plan your day or week, or maybe you are procrastinating a lot, not working on the important stuff.

In three online workshops you will be invited to reflect on various aspects of (time) management of your PhD project. Which goals or milestones do you have? Which aspects in your work are essential to achieve these goals? Do you spend your time and energy on the right things? If the answer to this question is no, take action and get back on track. You will get tools to work more efficiently. You will discover where your inefficiencies are and how to manage yourself in order to become more productive and to finish your PhD in time.


The training consists of three online group sessions of 2,5 hours with maximum 6 PhD students.  The group will be small (maximum 6) so that there will be enough time for sharing experiences and individual advice.

Participants log in to an online Zoom session with webcam and audio. The trainer will explain various concepts of time management and the practical organization of work. Participants share their work strategies and the difficulties they experience. Group discussions are alternated with discussion in smaller groups and exercises. Participants will receive homework in advance and after the sessions.


1. E-mail under control and overview over your work

2. The Big Rocks in your life and work

3. Working with focus

What other PhD students say about this course

Eko Rahmadian

My name is Eko Rahmadian, a third-year PhD student at Campus Fryslan, University of Groningen. I would like to say that my enrollment to the workshop ” Time-manage yourself and your PhD” was a big game-changer for my entire PhD. I became much more organized in everything by following several tips provided by Renée, step by step, and consistently. The good thing about this workshop was that it gave us time to implement the tips given in the class, and to decide later whether it fits or not for us. For me, all the tips work perfectly well and I still use all of them up to now. As the result, I made big progress on my research, and most importantly be a better person who could plan, prioritize and organize things in life. Thank you, Renée.

Eko Rahmadian

PhD student at Campus Fryslan, University of Groningen.

Foteini Karapanagioti

I thankfully took the Time-management course at the time when I needed it the most! Especially during the pandemic, when all of us were struggling, this course brought a light and new insight on why we have certain habits and what we can practically do to alter them to our favour. Renee provided us with a big pool of options that could fit any personality and taste! I felt encouraged and gladly tried many of them. Some of the suggestions and tools I managed to adopt and make them part of my daily schedule, which had a big impact on how efficient I am and feel. I am still using my task-list in a realistic way and whenever I feel “drifted” I revise parts of our course and pick up a different technique to stay focused! Renee made sure to listen and provide available solutions based on each attendee’s personality, which I found extremely inspiring. On the side, she helped me identify when my higher productivity time period is and was extremely helpful in giving suggestions on how to adapt time-management skills while struggling with low motivation issues. I would highly recommend the Time-management course; a great insight on how to make your life easier and feel more productive!

Foteini Karapanagioti

PhD candidate in Science and Engineering Faculty; Membrane Enzymology group, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen

Alicia Borneman

My (multiple) email inboxes were a disaster and I mostly let “urgent” situations rule my day, leaving not enough time and focus for the actually important things. Now, after implementing the tips from the course, I feel much less overwhelmed, clear headed and more focussed and I actually get the things done that matter most.

Alicia Borneman

PhD Student, Faculty of Science and Engineering, RuG

Weixin Meng

Thank you very much for you and your course. The ideas and tools I have learned during the course are very useful. The most useful thing I think should be the arrangement of tasks, especially the Eisenhower Matrix. This quadrant allows me to list not only long-term plans but also daily tasks. I can finish important and urgent things first. It also helps me to stop procrastinating to some extent. And chatting with everyone has also improved my English.

It also made me realize that I’m not the only one facing all kinds of puzzles and challenges. I have also learned a lot from others about my future PhD life. Thanks again. The course is beneficial to new PhD students. I am lucky to have had this course at the beginning of my PhD life.

Weixin Meng

PhD student, Faculty of Science and Engineering, RuG

Dan Wang

Thanks a lot for your workshops! I enjoyed the workshops very much, as they are really helpful to me. I also like the way you taught us, with sufficient discussions with all students, you can always provide us specific solutions to our problems.

Dan Wang

PhD student, Faculty of Science and Engineering, RuG

After this course you…

  • Zwill spend less time on email and can achieve inbox zero every day
  • Zwill have a better overview over the PhD project and the to-do’s
  • Zcan plan and prioritize your PhD project more effectively
  • Zcan recognize and deal with your procrastinating behaviour
  • Zwill have tools for optimizing your working style to work with more focus
  • Zcan achieve a better work – life balance
  • Zcan relax and enjoy working on your PhD project

Practical information

Online course Time management for PhD students – Time-Manage yourself and your PhD

Target group
PhD students from all over the world in all phases of their PhD project

The course will be given in English.

You can register your interest for the course by sending an email to the trainer Renée Niessen ( Please provide your name, address, institution and telephone number. A course will be planned as soon as enough students are registered.

€276,- excl. 21% BTW/VAT (€333,96 incl. 21% BTW/VAT)

Dates and time
Currently no workshop series is planned. Please send an email to in case you are interested in this training.