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The purpose of this assignment is to encourage you to take a step back from your studies and to assess your own progress as a student.  It is directly related to the learning outcome that concerns taking responsibility for your own learning while responding reflectively to tutor feedback.

– Assignment booklet, AA100 The Arts Past and Present, The Open University, Milton Keynes, 2010

I do not find reflective writing difficult – I am a child of the blog generation and have had a LiveJournal since April 16 2002, which accounts for nearly 29% of my life – a somewhat scary thought.  While I would argue that LiveJournal writing does not count as blogging, it has certainly encouraged me to consider my life and reflect on the events that have happened during it, and I have tried to bring this “experience” to this blog, which I do at least consider to be a real blog.

My next assignment for AA100 is to write 750 words on my progress as a student during the course, something that I shouldn’t find difficult.  So why am I writing this and not my reflective assignment?

The answer to that is simple – I’m stuck on the four little words “progress as a student”, as in some ways I do not really feel as though I’ve progressed. I have certainly learnt quite a bit about The Arts Past and Present and my general knowledge has increased ever so slightly as a result; however I do not feel that I’ve made any real progress in the fundamental aspects of being a student such as essay writing and time management.  My grades have decreased during the course and while I write good essays, I haven’t been writing great essays since TMA02, and it was a skill that I was pretty well versed in already thanks to my BSc (Hons) and my job.

So I need to look to other areas of being a student to find one that I have made progress in.  Perhaps I could use selective studying – I have certainly had to be very selective about what areas of the course I study due to my time constraints and that would definitely count as “a difficulty in studying that you have resolved”.  I have probably developed my note taking, or at least I’ve experimented with it.  I’ve tried taking notes on my computer and on paper; I’ve tried answering the questions in the chapters on paper, and I’ve tried answering them in my head; I have tried several different ways of planning and note taking for essays and I guess that I’ve at least learnt what works best for me.

On the other side of the coin we have “identify one or more ways in which your approach to study or your study skills could be improved” – this should be an easy one to answer!  I have quite a lot of recent experience of my approach to study needing to be improved, so I’ll try and give as many words to this as possible!

Finally, the last hurdle is in supporting what I know to be true with “specific examples” and finding relevant comments from my tutor, although that last part should be really easy as my tutor gives great feedback.

Anyway, now that I’ve written quite a few reflective words here, I should probably start writing some for my assignment.