For several months I have had to put aside my application for Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (being conducted through the university's Applaud programme), owing to a sudden upsurge in work.
I have felt just like my own students! pleading a mixture of work-related, family-related and medical reasons (I had a chest infection as well), as I explained to my students that I would not be quite as quick as I usually like to be over marking their assignments. My HEA Fellowship application was actually delayed because my two referees were put under pressure at work too, and didn't have time to do the references.
In the meantime, I felt I should bump up my mostly drafted application with some fresh reading so I did a desultory Google Scholar search for relevant articles. One of my colleagues also mentioned a highly relevant article she had written in a powerpoint presentation. I put these into a list 'for later'.
Much later! I realised that my plan to do my application and other personal development work on Thursday was just not happening. I am always telling my students that setting aside a special day for studying is not a good way to manage time, and I have found this out the hard way myself. I am switching to trying to read an article per day instead.
That habit also takes time to get into! Today I had to rush off to the supermarket at first light as my daughter revealed late yesterday that she had forgotten she would need a pepper, a courgette, some sweetcorn and frozen peas for her Home Economics class. However, mindful of setting a good example to my students, I did try to do some reading a bit later in the day.
I spent about fifteen minutes trying to track down my colleague's article. The internet link she provided in the powerpoint took too long to download. The OU online Library disclaimed any knowledge of the journal in which she had published. I guess I will have to ask her to email me a copy!
I moved on to one of the Google scholar articles (one of the few relevant ones I managed to pick out of a big list of irrelevant ones!). When I looked it up in the OU online Library, I inadvertently found out that their search engine will throw up all articles with relevant terms in their titles and key words, so I found a few more articles that way
By now I was a bit tired and time was pressing on, so I just carefully put the details of a couple of the articles in my newly formatted Annotated Bibliography (more on this soon). I think I will have a cup of tea after all that!