Students admit to procrastinating on assignments

By MATT YORK/Montana State News

Thirty percent of Montana State University students say they procrastinate and about 65 percent say they feel tempted to procrastinate.

The idea that students “procrastinate” on every assignment and paper is a running joke for most of the country. However, a poll of students at Montana State suggests that the majority of students actually don’t procrastinate; instead, they find it easier to argue that it’s a case of prioritizing.

“I don’t really procrastinate,” offered Aiden Keller, “I don’t get it all done right away, of course, but when it comes down to it I’m usually spacing assignments out. It’s not like I actively choose to put this item to the last minute. It’s more like ‘I have to get this paper done, because it’s worth more, and so I’ll do that after I’m done with this,’ which can sometimes leave it to the last minute.”

Keller adds that he understands that professors are just trying to get the material out there; it’s just the nature of the beast that the amount of homework is often plentiful. He believes most procrastination is probably closely related to the size of the work load.

Sixty five percent of students agree, feeling that procrastination isn’t a choice so much as a necessity with certain assignments, but then of course there is the one third of students that do procrastinate as a matter of habit.

“Yea, I generally play video games or go out with friends rather than do homework,” says Jake Johnson, “The work load hardly matters, I’ve had two papers due and a math assignment due the next day before, and I’ve only had one paper.”

Despite the reasons for procrastinating, whether it’s by force or choice, there is a general agreement with many students that the temptations are definitely there, including not just the opportunity to hang out with friends, but a lot of it is campus events.

With guest speakers, advertised parties, sorority or fraternity sponsored parties, sporting events, and concerts that are brought in by ASMSU, students say they can sometimes feel over-stimulated, and outside of the educational realm.

“I don’t blame them. They’re bringing all these things in to make it more fun, keep our lives a bit less stressful,” explained Keller, “But hey. If I see a guest speaker one week, and the next day is some Strand Union pizza party, and then I have four books to read, a paper to write, and I know half the campus is going to be at a certain party — the temptations to go to all of those is there, and I guarantee the paper falls to the last on my priorities list. That, though, is willpower.”

Edited by Becky Hattersley.

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