People stumble over the term “to better oneself”. We’re fine how we are, but, sure, we can always do ‘better’. I decided that some more education might be the go. I did my bachelor more than a decade ago and I’ve been in the same job more than a decade, so why not? Why not indeed. If you ever met me in person you’d know I’m a bit of a ‘klutz’ physically, but I’m also one of those bright people who is a little dumb sometimes. I currently feel like I might be earning a Master of DISASTER, and maybe having the university wonder why they offered me a place. This is a bit of a wound lick because today was the culmination of the end of the trimester with the last exam … and it didn’t go well. Let’s have a little look at what I’m probably doing wrong here:
1. Most people who work full time, like I do, are apparently doing one subject or two at the most. I took on FOUR. Next trimester, I’m doing two.
2. Most people allocate specific time to be a student so that they can dedicate ten hours a week to their unit of study. I work 40 hours a week. I need to study 40 hours a week. There are 168 hours in a week. If you sleep for 8 hours a day, over a week that’s 56 hours. There’s also around 8 hours a week in travel time to get to and from work. But that still leaves 24 hours… over 7 days. That’s three and a bit hours a day to do nothing, right? Children, parents, partners, occasional showers, meals, housework, authoring, social media … um… yeah. But I don’t sleep 8 hours a day, so that buys some time.
3. No two lecturers are the same when it comes to what they want. Even for the same subject. It is really hard to get it right, especially when they provide various different things about the assessment and they don’t correspond. So, always ask questions. Don’t feel stupid about asking questions, just ask.
4. If your internet connection dies when your assignment is due, wait up until it comes back. Really, what choice have you got?
5. If you’re submitting your assignment at the last minute, as is my want, make sure you actually press the SUBMIT button before walking away. I was exhausted, okay, but it’s not an excuse. I woke up two hours later and it was still on the screen. WHAT? So… it was submitted just before two in the morning, instead of by 11:59PM. Oops. And always, always, make sure it’s the correct version, not the draft version.
6. If you’re disappointed with your assessment result, and you feel like replying to your lecturer … either DON’T respond or don’t respond as soon as you get it. I didn’t get a reply, but I can’t un-send it. If you’re asking for more feedback then they’ve given then do it in a constructive and structured way.
7. If you’re attending an exam that requires a calculator, BRING a calculator, or two (which I did the first time). If you’ve just driven 45 kilometres (27 miles) in peak hour traffic, especially after having only three hours sleep due to issues compounded by an exposed nerve in your tooth, to ensure you’re at a 9am exam half an hour before it starts… you’re not going to make it home and back again or going to find a scientific calculator in a ‘club’ where your off-campus exam is being held. Watching a grown woman cry tends to disturb some people. (Hey, I was crying quietly.)