Ok, so it’s been quite a while since my last post. If fact it’s been quite a while since I even looked at this blog and I am quite impressed to see it has had nearly 2500 hits since I first started it. So I would like to apologise to one and all for the lack of new content. To make up for it, I am sure this is going to be rather a long post.
Right, so what’s been happening then since my last post nearly, ahem, eight months ago? Well, the first year is obviously finished, and I can honestly say thank f*** for that! I completely lost interest in DD102 right around the time I stopped posting, and to be honest, it didn’t improve as the year progressed. I did my assignments but that was pretty much it, and now I wait for the EMA result which is due in approximately four weeks from now.
So let’s go back to where I left off in November. My last post talked about the upcoming first tutorial, which I did attend. In fact, it was the only one I attended. Only about half of the tutor group turned up. It was cold, dark and damp, and the sky was full of fireworks. As far as tutorials go, it was alright. Our tutor knows his stuff and can teach very well. I just didn’t care for the subject matter. As you know, I signed up for a degree in psychology, but as of writing this, I still haven’t studied any psychology, and that is why I lost interest in such a massive way.
For anyone reading this blog over the summer that has signed up to DD102 and is trying to gain any sort of insight as to what lies ahead for them, I have one word: SOCIOLOGY. DD102 is designed to ease new students back into the world of academic study, and for the most part it does this very well. It gives you all the necessary tools to learn or relearn how to write effective essays and to use your study time effectively (not that I did. More on that later). The module is meant to be an umbrella module for anyone who is studying Psychology, Sociology, Economics etc, and that is where, in my opinion (and I am not alone) the course fails. A good 95% of the subject material is Sociology, and quite frankly I have no interest in it. My advice to anyone starting a Psychology degree this autumn is to not choose (or switch away from) this module if you don’t have an interest in Sociology. Choose the (I think) Intro to Child Psychology module instead. I wish I had. I never want to hear or read the term “inequality” ever again!
***The next couple of paragraphs come with a health warning to anyone reading this who has also just completed DD102 (ok, to any OU student) as I am aware (now I’ve been told) that this could piss some people off, especially those who worked really, really hard and didn’t get the marks they were hoping for. Also, if my tutor happens to read this, I apologise to you also.***
Since I lost all interest in the module pretty early on, you may be wondering how I managed to get through the rest of the year of study. The lazy way if I’m completely honest. One of the things critics of the OU mention is their ability to hand-hold students through the modules. I don’t yet know how true this is of later, higher level modules, but for DD102 it certainly was the case. For each TMA, the student notes tell you exactly where to go in the study materials for the relevant information to base your essay on. For all intents and purposes, I had stopped studying. I went for weeks at a time without logging into the website or picking up a book. I found that I didn’t need to. For each of the essays, my submission consisted of a day of reading through the applicable materials with a highlighter followed by a couple of hours typing up an essay and clicking “submit”. I should point out that I don’t condone or recommend this way of working, and I am certainly not trying to brag about it here, and I really don’t want to undermine the hard work that pretty much everyone else on the module put in. I just hated the module and couldn’t bear to pick up the books. But I didn’t want to drop out. I know that for the remaining five modules I will be totally engaged with. I have seen pdf copies of the DE100 module materials and can’t wait to get started in October with a renewed enthusiasm. So this first module is akin to paying my dues, I suppose.
I have survived though. I didn’t go to any more of the tutorials or Day Schools, or even any of the extra nights out that were arranged by others in the tutor group. My job has been pretty intense over the winter so all my effort went into that. Despite my lack of effort, I do have an OCAS average that would equate to a 2:1 for all the TMA’s. This is largely due to my ability to write coherently and the fact I was always “academically minded” as a youngster anyway. What my score tells me is, not that I can get a good mark without really trying (I did actually try to write the essays as best as I could when I was writing them), but give me some material I *am* interested in and actually enjoy, I can do so much better. I am still determined to get a First at the end of all this.
***End of health warning. I bet you read it anyway!***
So here we are, coming towards the end of June. The quiet time, academically speaking. Perhaps not the best time to resurrect a student blog, but there we go. I have signed up for two modules starting this October and my student finance has already been approved, with none of the fuss that went on last year. The first module is DE100, which is the compulsory Level 1 module: Investigating Psychology 1. As I mentioned, I have pdf’s of the course books from 2012, so I am sure they will have been updated by the time I receive hard copies at the end of August. I’ve only flicked through them so far but it looks like it’s going to be a great module and exactly what I want to study. The other module I have chosen is DD210: Living Psychology; From the Everyday to the Extraordinary. I think this is a new module, so not completely clear what is contained within it, but the module description looks good, so I am expecting great things. That said, the description for DD102 looked good too and look what happened there!
Ok, so I’m at over 1100 words for this post already. I did say that I could write and I did say that this would be rather a long post! I did just want to say that in my last post I mentioned that I was seeing someone. Well, that didn’t really work out (it lasted till the day after the 40th birthday party I went to!) I am happy to announce that I am in a relationship now though. Monday will be four months and I couldn’t be happier!
Thank you to all who have stuck with this blog. I promise I will try to write more often. I’m sure that if I stay enthused with the modules, I will be posting aplenty on here. If I go silent after October, you may assume I’m hating it. One thing is certain though- I’ve started so I will finish!
If anyone reading this has just finished DD102, please do share your thoughts on the module in the comments, but do be aware I need to approve any new comments before they appear here (it’s a spam thing).
Enjoy your weekend!
There Was An Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe...
Activity Description: This activity is designed to facilitate the development of empathy. Students examine an assortment of photographs depiciting shoes. They are asked to create a story about an imaginary person who “walked” in the shoes.
Time: Two 40-50 minute class periods are needed to complete this activity
Ask your students if they know the meanings of the words “sympathy” and “empathy.” After they respond, ensure that the following distinction is clear: the word “sympathy” means to feel sorry for someone and that the word “empathy” means to see the world through someone else’s eyes.
Tell the class that they are going to participate in a Think/Pair/Share Activity. A Think/Pair/Share Activity is designed to give students the opportunity for individual reflection and small-group conversations before participating in whole-class discussions. The first part of the activity, “Think”, is done individually. Ask the students to respond in a writing journal to the following prompts:
What do you think it would feel like to be in a wheelchair?
What do you think it would feel like to have no parents?
Describe how you think it might feel to be in prison.
The second part of the activity, “Pair”, is done in pairs. Divide the students into
groups of two and ask them to share their journal responses. The “Share” portion
of the activity is whole-class discussion. Invite your students to share their thoughts
and responses to the journal prompts and to the idea of seeing the world through
another person’s eyes.
Share the picture of Vincent Van Gogh's painting of a pair of boots with your class at
The Metropolitan Museum of Art website at http://www.metmuseum.org/ Works_Of_Art/viewOne.asp? dep=11&viewmode=1&item=1992.374. Ask your students to imagine who might have owned the boots Van Gogh painted.
Place the photographs below depicting an assortment of shoes in a large box.
Divide the students into teams and ask each team to select one photograph and tell a
story about a person who “walked in these shoes.” Tell students that they can create a
skit, a drawing, a song or a poem to tell their stories.
5. Provide time for each group to share its presentation with the entire class.