Peeping tom? Actually no, it was a mere glance through an ‘uncurtained’ basement flat window in Cambridge last night. Two students sitting on separate sofas, study notes open on their laps, yet the TV on and their attention focussed on the TV and not their study notes!
That was the four-second glance I took into the study habits of more ‘traditional students’, whilst walking back from a relaxing evening with family at a local pub.
Two quick observations on this above tag lines:
- How we love distraction during the stressful examination preparation phase?
- The potential camaraderie you enjoy when you study at a traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ university attending regular lectures and the social interactions with fellow students.
Something we as distance learners do not necessarily experience on a regular basis.
However, I also want to add a comment to the post on online study groups (see Learning to Learn with an online study group and Filtering), which was very clearly demonstrated to me during a two month interim assignment I recently completed.
The topic is about ‘Relevance’.
It is amazing that not just the academic learning, but online study group skills we learn as distance learners are both relevant and a fertile training ground for the world of work we enter or plan to enter.
I was part of a ‘virtual team’ with around eleven people working on a project all within a virtual framework and delivery mechanism. And, because of the volcanic ash cloud interruptions we were still able to deliver our programme of work to the tight deadlines set, even though all members of the team were not able to meet up in person as regularly as they would have liked, because some were stranded in exotic location like Mexico or the Canary Islands.
This was partly due to key Information Technology infrastructure making it this form of collaboration possible, but more importantly, because online study groups already give us the head start we need in order to make an impact, be able to work remotely and in ‘physical’ isolation, yet still being ‘plugged into’ the wider organisation and world outside our manuals and computer screens. So all learning, in whatever format and whatever methodology we use, must be relevant to our future goals and aspirations.