So, 3 years into this degree and the thing that still drives me nuts is essay writing. It takes me months to start writing answers that I am halfway happy with. Anyway, I hope this resonates with you all. If it does, keep reading ‘my roadmap to essay writing’, the steps I usually go through to write a Politics/International Relations Essay.
Step number 1: Getting my head around the material.
Before I can even think about an essay, I have to study the material. Usually this involves going through the Study guide and the Essential Reading. Whether I write the essays as I go along or wait till I finish the syllabus, it depends on the module and how well I understand it. Continue reading
I love planning, it makes everything seem right in a highly topsy-turvy world where surprises are always lurking around the corner.
Here are a couple of things I like to do when I am studying my politics modules. Take a look, I hope that they help you too!
Understanding what’s expected of me
When I started this degree my first step was to sit down and read all those lovely resources that UOL offer, explaining how the degree worked and what was expected of us as students. Understanding this helped me to understand what I had to do and when I had to do it; the Strategies of Success book gives a really nice overview of the different kinds of plans students should make. Continue reading
My, my… It’s been already two weeks since my last examination, and I am still all bubbly with the information gathered throughout this year, in which I attempted three modules instead of my usual two. I bet a lot of you are feeling the same, maybe with a bit of regret mixed in (“why did I not start earlier?” “I should have read that author”, etc.).
However, do not let the regret take hold of you, rather, take advantage of that spur to action by evaluating your past year. To gear yourself towards interpreting your results, the first thing you should do is make a fair evaluation of your efforts: did you encounter any difficulties this year? Was your planning too tight/too loose? Did you spread your efforts evenly across all your modules? These questions and many more can offer you a valuable view of your learning style as a student, and the input can then be used to improve your efforts next year. Continue reading
There are 24 hours in a day. 25 of which I have spend staring at my books.
In my city, Mumbai, India, summer vacations for most have already started. College students as well as kids frolic around in the blazing sun while attempting to catch the last drop of their ice creams. While some are catching flights into relaxed oblivion, I am here wiping my sweat with my notes.
UOLIA EXAMINATIONS 2018: Countdown begins. Continue reading
Oh, the joys of parenting. If you are new parents, I bet you are all fed up of hearing the just-you-waits: “Just you wait till you have to wake up every night for a year”; “Just you wait until pumpkin puree is all splattered on your living room wall”. And so on. While everyone is very keen on warning you about all the things you will be missing out on, no one really tells you how the sweet side is. The cuddly nights. The first smile. The glorious moment when you go to pick them up at daycare and they come running at you with the biggest of smiles on their faces, so glad to see you and so ready for kisses and hugs.
But then examinations come. And, unavoidably, we tend to forget about those sweet, sweet times because we are stressed out and that screeching little monster is just a hindrance to our much-needed quiet time. Continue reading
Having a study plan is one of the first things that enters our mind when we decide to study, and even more if we do so as International Programmes students. We think in terms of time allocation, ascertaining when we will be able to sit down with our books, juggling many other commitments, perhaps thinking that it is not worth planning study sessions if our lives are so hectic that we are lucky with an hour left for studying. Continue reading
“Law school is no joke.” That’s what a friend of mine said when we last talked about my study program. He wasn’t lying. He’s a professional athlete, a downhill skier. He inspired me to think of note-taking like one of his epic runs to the finish line on a Super-G (super giant slalom) course – a combination of precision, technical expertise, and speed.
My fellow study mates!
Exams are soon upon us and so I have decided to take a break and tell you about my study pattern which worked for me during my LLB and seems to be working for me now as I read for my LLM. Hopefully it can assist you as well, especially those new to the University of London International Programmes (UoLIP).
By way of introduction, I am Philip Koonj Beharry, graduate of the UoLIP LLB programme, Class of 2012. I am currently an Attorney at Law in my home country of Trinidad and Tobago and I am also currently preparing for my first set of LLM exams with the UoLIP. My personal story can be found in this article on London Connection.
Over the last few weeks, I had some nice conversations with fellow students. The hottest topics turned out to be May’s exams and how to get prepared for them. In addition, some first-year students asked me about examiners’ commentaries and how to make best use of these. Therefore, I thought I’d post something on the Blog to share my views with a larger audience.
Well, we’ve got four months left before examinations. According to my year-wise objectives, this period marks a shift from short-term routine to mid-/long-term planning, which involves practice and perfection of acquired techniques until May. Now, we won’t necessarily agree on the best way to approach exams or when to start revising. However, we should at least concur on the following: practice with past exam papers should take most of our study time.
Dear students in arms,
There are two aspects to consider here that are relevant in undertaking any exam. The first is the psychological and the second is technical; I will try to elaborate on both holistically.
From the psychological side we have to realize that we ourselves are our greatest teachers; tutors and professors can show us the way but we have to travel that path ourselves. A person who is determined and keeps on pursuing ultimately gets his/her rewards, with or without any tutor. Later onwards in our lives we will realize that ‘one repays a teacher badly if one always remains only a pupil’ (Friedrich Nietzsche).