All entries for Thursday 09 January 2014

January 09, 2014

Update to Action Point 1 of Reading and note–making

Follow-up to First entry on Reading and note–making from David's blog

  1. My First Action Point was to try and read quicker than my usual reading speed in opening 2 to 3 weeks of the Christmas holiday.

During my Christmas holidays I read not only within my field of study but also surrounding it and outside it. Although I planned to use the finger pointing technique, which did work, I quickly found that I could read just as quickly without it. Like the finger technique I simply did not allow myself to stop reading and continued without halt. Known as scanning, I found that using this technique allowed me to get through much more reading than usual and at a much quicker pace.

Once I used this technique with work-related reading, I found it easier to read for pleasure too even though I usually take more time. Since starting back at Warwick, I have found that scanning has been particularly useful for seminar reading in which you need to get the core information from multiple readings. I plan to use scanning as well as skimming (an even quicker reading technique) for future work during this term.

Final Entry on opening Workshop

Follow-up to First entry on Getting started on skills development and the Warwick Skills Portfolio from David's blog

In this entry I will sum up what I have achieved since the opening workshop on getting started with the Warwick Skills Porfolio Award.

Over the last three months or so, I have set out and tried to achieve three actions points from the opening workshop. Having learned from the opening workshop that I was a reflector learner rather than an activist or a theorist learner, I specifically tailored my three action points to improve in the latter two areas. The three action points were:

1. Get more involved in new activities:

As a new postgraduate student to Warwick, everything from the university was new to me in a sense. That said, I immediately got involved in the student newspaper, the five a side football society, the warwick sport gym and even went along to some guest lectures and free bee indoor football sessions.

Although I did not manage to join Warwick TV as I originally planned, I still may by the end of this term. That aside, filling my time at warwick by doing activities, some of which I had never done before has been a very fulfilling experience. I am very pleased so far with what I have been involved with and plan to continue all these activities and perhaps more.

2. Be more talkative and come up with more ideas in discussion environments:

As a reflector learner it was sometimes hard for me to adjust to a different learning technique. However, during the second half of the first term I found that the more confident I was in discussions environments the easier it was to get something more out of debates.

Quite often I found myself not only speaking up when others did not but also leading topical debates during seminars. I learned that as long as I had done my reading for seminars, being more assertive was not that hard and was in fact enjoyable. Having more assertive ideas in seminars enhanced my confidence, self-expression and even helped others bring ideas to the table.

3. Stick to a routine/timetable:

In my last university I found it hard to stick to a good routine. However, with the use of a diary over the last couple months, I have found it a lot easier. With a diary I have been able to successfully structure my week around seminars and lectures, library hours, football, the gym, extra-curricular work (such as this blog) and leisure time.

Although not always exactly the same each week, I always try to do the same amount of hours for each activity. Hence a structured yet flexible timetable is key as it means I am more likely to complete all my tasks and enjoy my leisure time.

To conclude, by completing these three actions points over the past couple of months I have found that I am for more organised than I used to be. Not only have I tried new approaches, but I have found these approaches work well. By getting involved, being more assertive and having a planned out schedule, I am learning and maturing more and more and in turn I am more likely to accomplish difficult tasks in the future.

January 2014

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Most recent comments

  • Hello David, Thanks for writing such a reflective final entry for the WSPA – what a pleasure to read… by Lisa Faulkner on this entry
  • David, Considering the lack of presentation opportunities that you have had over the past few weeks,… by Nathalie Dalton-King on this entry
  • Excellent extrapolation of the technique, David. I am pleased that you have continued to use it in t… by Nathalie Dalton-King on this entry
  • David, What a good way to practice when you don't have a presentation any time soon. And then of cou… by Nathalie Dalton-King on this entry
  • Hi David, Well done on completing this module and filling in four blogs for this. I have enjoyed rea… by on this entry

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