P1 – An Introduction to Skills Development and The Warwick Skills Portfolio
Date of Workshop: 2nd November 2011
Tutor: Han-Na Cha
I've decided to take control of my destiny... well, my future employable destiny at least, and attend a few skills classes. This first session focused on discovering your learning style, (activist here by the way), and figuring out ways of strengthening your weakest points. I scored lowest on Pragmatist, no big surprise to me there, but when we were asked which point to improve on, a flick through the booklet and I found a point from 'Theorist' that i'm much worse on than any Pragmatist point. 'I am rather fussy about how I do things - a bit of a perfectionist.' No. No i'm not. In fact, i'm probably the exact opposite of a perfectionist. Don't get me wrong, I'll never leave any work half finished, but if essay and report feedback have taught me anything it's that I could've gone that little bit further to get the higher grade. I'll check something and leave it, where's the double check? Triple check? Making sure it's something amazing, something to be really proud of? Well, not being a perfectionist isn't completely true. I have a flair for art and where my pictures are concerned I often spend hours tweaking and making them perfect. Taking that skill and applying it to my academics, even to my everyday life? Now that sounds like a challenge. But one I'm quite willing to accept.
Now I don't want to take on more than I can chew, but another point caught my eye: 'I am quite keen on sticking to fixed routines, following procedures and keeping to timetables.' I am quite keen on keeping to timetables, that's true, but only when I actually sit down and make them. I have a tendency to cut my workload or activities down so that I have less things to shcedule in. A new society? Sounds good but then i'd have another thing to add to a day. The reading for my next seminar isn't required, should I schedule it in for later or have an evening free? Yes, my timetabling skills need serious practicing so I can fit in more things and make more of my time here; i've realised that.
As far as perfectionism goes, I have plenty of opportunities to improve this trait. There's that essay due in two weeks time, and that report due in week 9, but I think my biggest challenge will be the critical analyses i'm required to perfrom for seminars (and eventually assessment) in the near future. This involves reading through an already written article and perfecting it the best I can - the perfect chance to test my perfectionism! I'll keep here up to date with how this all goes, hopefully with the added effort I can see an increase in a mark or two!
The timetabling skill is a little more exciting. I've applied for a position on the exec of the Careers Skills Society. If I get it, that means I'll have meetings to attend, a group to lead and considerably more events to schedule in. Even if I don't make it onto the exec i've looked for opportunities elsewhere; i'm becoming more active in art society, i've joined dodgeball society, and I may even look into attending some social events for my own subject's society - Psychology. On top of all of that I've already signed up to 3 more of these workshops and I'm waiting for the slots to open for 2 more. Going for the Warwick Skills Portfolio Award should give me the chance to perfect both of these skills, as well as giving me something amazing to aim for!
Even though it looks like I'm going to be pretty busy in the upcoming weeks, I haven't forgotten the other key point of the workshop! Reflection, something I'm trying to add in everyday in my own way. The bookmark of points to consider is really useful, whether it's for my course or in my personal life. Using this I've already thought hard about some things in my life and considered some positive changes to make.
I'll keep here posted with any progress, loving this blog system, it's a really nice place to get ideas down!
~ Taylor xx
P.S - I checked this blog post over before posting it. Perfectionism point, check!