How To Get The Most Out Of Your METIS Planner

Click here to access an On-line Version of the METIS Planner Quick Start Guide 

Select One of the Following How To Topics: 

What’s included in the printed METIS Planner?

The METIS Planner is designed for the Fall Semester through the following Summer Session academic year.  The core of the planner includes:

    • Detailed Weekly Views – integrated daily planner and detailed to do lists
    • Monthly Views – calendar and monthly projects
    • Semester Views – calendar and long term projects

The METIS Planner is more than just schedules and to do lists.  Each month includes a place to reflect and celebrate the prior month and a place to plan and organize the upcoming month.

The final section of the METIS Planner allows students to look beyond the current year.  This section includes thought provoking and fun pages that include:

    • A Special Occasions Planner
    • Life’s Big To Do’s
    • Life's Little To Do's
    • An Idea/Concept Planner
    • A Vision Planner
    • A 3-Year Planner

What’s available as a supplemental download?

Registered users of the METIS Planner will have full access to the following supplemental downloadable content.  Based on user feedback, even more additional content will be provided.

Academic Helpers


Class Master View

Class Grade Log

General Activity Planner

Research Paper Activity Planner

Lab Report Activity Planner

Active Reading and Study Planner

Group Project Planner

Financial Helpers


Textbook Buying/Renting Worksheet

Weekly Incidental Expense Tracker

Savings and Expense Tracker

Work Helpers


Job and Intern Search Planner

Job and Work Study Schedule

Goal Trackers


Exercise Goals and Log

Step Log

Menu Planner and Food Log

Extracurricular and Community
    Service Activity Log

4-Year Undergrad Course Schedule Planner


Complete Comprehensive 4-Year
     Course Planning and Tacking

Simple 1-Page 4-Year Course
    View Worksheet

Typical Week at a Glance 1-Pager

Grad School Planner


LSAT/Law School Planner

MCAT/Med School Planner

GMAT/Business School Planner

GRE/Grad School Planner

Life’s Little Helpers


Medical Planner

Wallet & Critical Possession Log

Move In Check List

Password Helper

Shopping and Grocery Planner

Grocery Price Checker Log

Teacher Tools


Class Roster

Attendance Record

Class Participation

Grade Sheet

Name Overlay

Monthly Notes

Lesson Plans

Log Book

Parent Guardian Contact Log

Reading Workshop - Student Details

Reading Workshop Participation Log

Writing Workshop - Student Details

Writing Workshop Participation Log

Student Anecdotal Log

Detailed Student Behavior Log

IEP 1-Page Summary

IEP Anecdotal Log


How to Work With Your To Do Lists

Two Ways To Do To Do's (Looping)

Three Ways to Block Time In Your Daily Schedule

For any entry that requires more than one block of time (typically >15 minutes), record the entry beginning at the start time.

For the full time of the activity, you can:

  1. Mark the full duration by shading the minute blocks,
  2. Draw a bracket for the full duration,
  3. Shade the remaining time to note that the time is reserved.

Some users like to color code each type of activity.  For example, blue for classes, purple for work, green for social, yellow for extracurricular, and pink for to do’s.


What To Do At The End Of Each Day

At the end of each day, you should scan that day’s Daily Schedule and review any task that does not yet have a ü in the Completed O

  • If the task is no longer required, mark the Completed O with an û so you know the task is no longer needed,
  • If the task is still required, allocate additional time and mark the Completed O with an à to indicate that you have moved the entry forward.
  • All kickstarter supporters at the $10 and higher level may want to also consider using one of the Activity Planner supplemental downloads if the task would be better handled by breaking it into a series of smaller steps.

Additionally, at the end of each day, scan your To Do Lists (weekly, monthly, semester, and class specific) and for any unmarked item …

  • Consider adding an entry in the priority column using a scheme that works for you (High/Medium/Low, 1/2/3/4, A/B/C, Red/Yellow/Green) to provide guidance for future days.  Remember, however, priorities can change as due dates approach.
  • Consider scheduling specific tasks to ensure that you have planned the time to do what needs to be done and mark that item with a ü in the Scheduled O
  • If the task is no longer required, mark the Completed O with an û so you know the task is no longer needed,
  • If the task is still required, but you want to move it to a future To Do List, mark the Completed O with an à to indicate that you have moved the entry forward.

How to Develop a Plan to Graduate in 4 Years

Perhaps the most important long term plan any college student needs to create, track, and refine is a 4-year course schedule. Forgetting about a prerequisite or missing a gen-ed requirement can be extremely costly in terms of both time and money. Of course, any 4-year plan needs to be flexible and account for both scheduling challenges and possible changes or additions to your major(s) and minor(s).

The Supplemental/Bonus download section includes a comprehensive 6 step process to help develop and then track your course requirements during your college years. Each of the 6 steps are described below.

Step 1 - Identify Your Specific Graduation Requirements

This step allows you to identify each category of requirements that are specific to your unique situation.  Typically, this would include gen-ed requirements as well as requirements for your major.  If you are double majoring or including one or more minors, you would also identify those additional requirements as part of Step 1.

Step 2 - Identify Potential Courses To Satisfy Requirements

This step allows you to individually focus on each requirement category and identify both required and elective courses that will satisfy the identified requirements.  It’s important to identify more than the minimum number of elective courses during this step.  You will not need to take more than the required number of elective courses, but when trying to construct a semester specific schedule, it’s important to have flexibility.  Additionally, you may find that some elective courses satisfy requirements for more than one category (e.g. the course meets requirements for 2 different majors) so you may discover that some elective classes are better than others.

Additionally, when identifying each course, it is critical to note any prerequisites (courses that you need to have already completed before taking a class) or co-requisites (courses that you need to take at the same time).  This information will force a specific sequence for classes that you are interested in taking.

Also pay particular attention to any courses that have limited availability.  For example, some courses are only offered during the Fall semester.  This too becomes critical information in planning your 4-year schedule.


Step 3 - Construct Tentative 4-Year Plan

With all the required and elective courses that you are interested in taking identified for each requirement category, begin to slot courses into specific semesters.  Pay particular attention to courses that are prerequisites for other classes to make sure you are sequencing them correctly.  And, of course, be careful to schedule limited availability classes only during the semesters for which they are offered.

For each semester, identify the minimum number of credits that you expect to take in order to graduate on schedule.  If your major requires 120 overall credits, then you need to average 15 credits per semester (120 / 8).  However, if you are double majoring or your major has a higher credit requirement, you may need to average more credits per semester or consider winter or summer classes.

For each semester, due to prerequisite sequencing, you will likely identify several classes that you must take during that semester to stay on track. Be sure to identify those courses so that when building a semester specific schedule, you know where you do and do not have flexibility in constructing your schedule.

Once you have identified your must take classes, be sure to note the number of optional classes you will also need to take to stay on track.  For example, if you have determined that you need to take at least 15 credits for the semester and you have two 3-credit classes identified as must take, then you need at least nine additional credits to stay on track (15 – (2 * 3) = 9).  Continuing the example, you may have identified six optional 3-credit classes, so you know you will need to schedule at least three of the remaining six classes when you build a semester specific schedule.

Step 4 - Build Semester Specific Schedule(s)

For each semester, well in advance of your scheduled registration date, construct one or more tentative schedules.

Start with the courses you identified as must take for the semester and fill in with the required number of optional courses.  

Since during the actual registration process, classes may already be filled up, provide yourself flexibility by considering schedules with multiple optional courses and with your must have classes at different times.

When creating multiple tentative schedules, include a preference indication starting with “1” for your highest preference schedule.  This will serve as a reminder during the actual registration process for which schedule to try to use first.

 Step 5 - Register for Classes and Adjust Overall Plan If Necessary

At your earliest scheduled time, attempt to register for your classes in priority order.

If you can’t register for a complete schedule, try combining courses from 2 or more of your tentative schedules.

If still having issues, try contacting your advisor or a specific professor to get special permission for a closed course override.

If unable to adjust the current semester, review the 4-year plan and consider winter break or summer classes to stay on track.

Return to Steps 2 and 3 and mark the appropriate courses as scheduled.


Step 6 - Track Course Completions and Refine Plan As Needed

At the end of each semester, after successfully completing each class with the grade needed to satisfy each graduation requirement, return to steps 2 and 3 and mark the appropriate courses as completed.

Review overall progress and adjust step 3 as necessary.