Nobody said that it is going to be easy. Anyone who grows up in a traditional education system would have the idea of pedagogy that naturally conjures up the picture of a classroom of students and a teacher. Nobody said that to acquire a degree through self-studying, without guidance, is going to be smooth sailing. However, no one has said that it is an impossible task either.
I believe that most of us in the UOL long distance program shoulder the same responsibilities: work, family and studies. As if to juggle these is not challenging enough, some of us have also taken the degree course without any additional help: we study without attending any local teaching institutions. A daunting task it is, but, we must not forget the one big perk that is attached to it – flexibility.
Hello readers and colleagues!
I know… it’s been a while since our last conversation but I’m back with some potentially interesting thoughts for you.
How to plan your studies? How to make sure we begin the new academic year in the best possible way? It sounds like a subjective matter but there are some general considerations that apply to almost all of us.
We should take advantage of this relatively quiet period – academically speaking – to carefully devise a basic plan. In my brief experience, I learnt the earlier we start planning (i.e. structuring our studies), the better our results and the more enjoyable the journey.
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.
Well, there is less than a month to our exams. I just received my admission notice recently. I am sure everyone is filled with jitters. Personally, I am filled with jitters. Especially so when I realise that with each passing day, my exams are one day closer. It’s quite scary to know that your exams are so close and you still feel rather unprepared.
It’s that time of the year again. It’s the Chinese New Year. I know not everyone celebrates this but to everyone who does, Happy Chinese New Year!
I found this year to be rather festive. My classmates are getting haircuts and buying new clothes. Even I got some new clothes. Hence, I am feeling rather festive.
About two weeks ago, the results were released. Champagnes were popped, for those who were happy with what they achieved. Hairs were yanked from heads, for those who did not do well and wished they had put in more effort.
I am straddling the two. My feeling for my results, is something I still could not fathom at this moment. I would say that I did well enough to secure good passes, but not well enough to score distinctions. It gave a strange feeling that is worse than the lousy feeling I would feel, if I had failed the exams. I am aware that this daze, this inability to feel neither jubilant nor disappointed, could be potentially dangerous. Because gradually, from a state of daze I would soon be transformed into a languid mood. Needless to say, this would lead to my study plans for the new school term, being utterly jeopardised.
Tick tock. Tick tock. Tick tock.
That’s time passing by. As each second passes, it’s each second gone.
I am not sure about everyone else, but my classmates and I put up countdowns, counting down the days to our exams.
Well, year 2 has begun. Actually, classes have already started for the past three weeks. However, it is only now that I really feel that my year 2 has really started.
The reason for that is that I am beginning to realise how interesting and challenging year 2 is. It makes me wonder if year 3 would be much harder. Anyhow, that’s for me to worry about in year 3. Since I am in year 2, I should be worrying about year 2.
This week, I received my subject guides and it makes me very happy.
I suppose I really like receiving parcels. It feels some sort like Christmas.
The parcel feels like a present and unwrapping makes me really excited. Even though I know what is in it, it still makes me very happy.
What is exam day like for you? Despite planning a year in advance, for me, it always comes as a bit of a surprise when exam time is actually here. A little stress comes with this deadline that, combined with other responsibilities, can make me feel as if I forgot everything I ever knew. Then there is test taking anxiety, which for me, is another layer to be aware of and manage. I find it helpful to have a few strategies that help me remember material, and that remind me how to write a good essay.
I heard a story on NPR (National Public Radio) today that called April a transition month. I have decided to find it charming, despite the fact that, in the last seven days, we have enjoyed a bit of spring, summer, and winter weather. It is a study transition month too, shifting from regular study to exam preparation. While wistfully remembering the 88-degree, sunny day we enjoyed last Sunday and contemplating the snow squalls we are enjoying today it occurred to me it could be useful to contemplate the things that helped me succeed in our programs and on previous exams.