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Becca

Final Module - DE300

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I cried when I finally got my grade for DD310. Really cried. Bawled! My last module before this began in 2018, so it had been a long old time since I had studied with the OU, and I was nervous for level 3. My TMA grades weren't *quite* as high as they usually are, so I really needed to knock it out of the park on my EMA to have any hope of a distinction overall for the year. I'm thrilled to report that I did! 😁😁😁 I've now achieved distinctions in all of level 2 and half of level 3 - I only need a 2:2 for DE300 to achieve a 1st overall!!! I'm obviously going to aim as high as I can anyway, but it's taken SO much pressure off!!

Since my last post, I've:
🥳 Passed my 3rd exam (of 4 total) for my BCS International Diploma in Business Analysis!
🥳 Rehabilitated my poor torn hip flexor!
🥳 Competed in the UK Aerial Performance Championship in April, despite the above injury (I won my regional round!)
🥳 Performed at a showcase in Newbury in April
🥳 Been on a HUGE weekend-long train-a-thon at the Manchester Aerial and Acrobatics Convention (also in April - so much for easing back in lol) and tried several new disciplines!
🥳 Performed in the Aerial Authentics Competition in Wigan in May, where I came 2nd (and brought home some chains to play on!)
🥳 Performed on aerial hoop at my own work party (nerve-wracking in front of all of my colleagues!) in June
🥳 Participated in a few more aerial photoshoots, including a paid photography workshop in a hideous heatwave!
🥳 Performed on the Moon Lyra for the first time in July, and thoroughly enjoyed it!
🥳 Finally found my way back to singing in front of people again - just at karaoke for now, but I'm putting a band together, and have the local amateur operatic society asking me to join and audition for a production of Evita!
🥳 Been formally diagnosed autistic/ADHD, after a long journey involving 2 psychiatrists and a neurocognitive psychologist.

Life has been absolutely crazy and it has been pretty overwhelming at times. But I'm really proud of everything that I've achieved, and hope I can have a really good year and finally, FINALLY graduate 👩🏻‍🎓

My first attempt at university began in September 2008. It has been such a long road to get just to this point, and I can't believe that the end is finally in sight. That I'm finally achieving things I dreamed of decades ago. Academically. Personally. Artistically. Things are coming together✨

Images of singing, dancing, and performing aerial acrobatics

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Becca

DE100 OUPS Study Weekend 2017

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I know I'm a student as I sit here at my laptop participating in an online tutorial, but there's just something more student-y about going to lectures with other students, isn't there? I went to Warwick for the DE100 consolidation weekend and had a really good time with the other students and professors there! I learned a lot and got to meet a lot of really lovely people from all over the UK, including students working on stages 1, 2 and 3. If you're considering going to one of these events I would wholeheartedly recommend it!!

I started to see where I could go with my studies, developed some new aims and ambitions, made some contacts, and am even working on an idea that I want to investigate just out of personal interest. Once I'm all done with my modules for this year I think I will run a little pilot (assuming I get the appropriate permissions) in order to apply my new learning smile I have more direction, more confidence, and more enthusiasm (even for methods and statistics, which I was a little intimidated by at first!), so a big thank you to the organisers, to the new friends I've made, and especially to the lecturers!

I've also realised that the end of January marks the half-way point!! I'm halfway through year 1 already. Hopefully the second half will go as well as the first half! :D

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Becca

Progress, Post-its, and a Promotion

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Edited by Rebecca Strachan, Saturday, 24 Sep 2016, 19:37

I still haven't received the DE100 books yet, but I found the PDF versions of the module textbooks for both DD102 and DE100! I've downloaded all of them and put them onto my iPad. Much more portable! It has enabled me to start DE100 and honestly... I was a little daunted at first as the workload seems higher, the reading takes me longer. But I think I'm learning well and picking up the new terms and concepts, which is encouraging. I really feel like a psychology student, now.

Today I went out and used my student discount haha, I bought a little whiteboard, more post-it notes, some index cards, and a weekly planner. I'm ready. Bring on the official module start!!

I've been assigned a tutor for DE100 already in spite of my late sign-up... still nothing on DD102 but I assume they'll sort it out soon! I think it's probably a very large module as obviously other social science subject degrees will also include it so perhaps they're struggling to divide up the students or something. I'm on like week 7 of that now so I'm pretty happy left to my own devices to be honest.

Workwise I interviewed for a position a band up from my current one and got offered the job more or less on the spot!! So I will be moving departments at some point in the next few weeks. I'm a bit worried about it as my travelling time is going to be longer, which will eat into my study time. I'm hoping that if I get far enough ahead I can keep myself ahead of schedule and still fit my study time in in spite of the extra driving etc.

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Becca

Impatience is a virtue...?

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After my last post, I joined a Facebook group for students on my module (DD102 - Introducing the Social Sciences). I found that quite a lot of them were studying full time in spite of working full time. "It must be possible, then," I thought. Some of them have kids and work full time, and are still doing 2 modules!

So I bit the bullet on the final deadline for enrolling on October modules. I added DE100 to the mix. I kind of wish I'd done it earlier because now I have no idea how long it will take for them to post out the course materials, and may hold me up in getting a tutor. But that's okay, I'll keep steaming ahead with DD102 so that when everything arrives I won't have trouble keeping up.

I officially start 2 weeks today, so I'm technically already ahead of schedule anyway. My wall calendar doesn't have enough stickers for all my assignments etc now that I have 2 modules, so I've created my own system to track them using different colours for the different subjects. I have no tutorials booked yet but when I do, they'll also be colour coded according to which subject they're for. I'm tracking my module progress on paper as well, so that I have a constant visual reminder of where I'm at and the progress I've made. Perhaps it will motivate me to work harder smile

My wall chart and module progress trackers

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Becca

A new identity: student

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I have assumed a lot of different identities over the years, often related to work, hobbies, associations, and interests. I've been a student before, several times. And yet there's still something alien about it. Something exciting. I've made what feels like a huge decision to take steps towards a goal, and becoming a student makes it feel much more real. 

I'm trying to make the most of my excitement and enthusiasm by throwing myself straight into the module content (ignoring the fact that I don't technically start until October 1st). I've studied at university level before for my CertHE so I'm pretty confident in my ability to study independently and don't really feel the need to wait for guidance. I think distance learning in this way is going to really suit me. 

I read the first chapter of the core textbook shortly after receiving it, and have now worked through the first 2 weeks' worth of material. In my excitement I've also started the first assignment, having watched the videos on the module website. I felt quite emotional watching John's story (the homeless man) - I've worked in police custody and often met people like him there. Everyone else was pretty cynical and used to make fun of me for being so soft (I often felt sorry for the detainees), but everyone has a story - a reason why they are where they are. 

I'm starting on the week 3 content this week, and reading chapter 2. I wonder if it's possible to go through the module at an accelerated pace? I might like to pick up another 60 credit module in January if so. I'd really like to do the whole year in the space of a year, in spite of working full time. I'll see how I go over the next few months, and talk to my tutor (once I get assigned one!). 

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Becca

Begin Again

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Edited by Rebecca Strachan, Friday, 9 Sep 2016, 11:09

"Failure is only the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently." - Henry Ford

Life has been a confusing mess of wholly unpredictable experiences thus far. I'm loath to make long-term plans or have long-term goals as I feel like every time I do, the rug is sharply pulled from under my feet and I end up back at the start. With nothing left to do, but...

Dust myself off. Begin again. 


And yet here I am, 28 years old, and tentatively agreeing with myself that I'm finally going to do it. I'm going to do the degree in Psychology that I've been contemplating for several years now. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't apprehensive about it. And honestly I don't have the confidence to think about what I'll do with it, what I'll do next. 

Not yet. At least, not beyond this vague aim -

I hope to take all of the adventures and misadventures that have led me to this point, and make something meaningful out of them. To learn to understand myself, to understand others. To make something good out of everything bad. To create my own silver linings as I come to terms with the experiences I've had. To eventually help others to do the same.

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