Parkinson’s Law

In University, professors would assign us a term project at the start of the semester. Initially, we felt relaxed knowing we had ample time to complete it. Ideally, we would work on it gradually each week. However, we often ended up procrastinating until the last minute, finishing the entire project in the days right before the deadline, sometimes even pulling all-nighters.

In my last semester of Computer Engineering, my friend and I took a project course called ECE 499. The course required us to complete a research project and write a report on a topic of our choice. We had the whole semester to work on it, but we knew that we both had a tendency to procrastinate. We waited until 4 days before the deadline to start working on the report. During those four days, we focused exclusively on researching and writing and managed to write a 40-page report. In the end, we received a final grade of 98% for our work.

Parkinson’s law is a concept that says that the amount of time it takes to complete a task will expand to the time allocated to it. Often, we allocate too much time for tasks when they can be done with the same level of quality in a shorter period.

December 21, 2023

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