Keep moving (and skipping, if necessary)
26/04/2013 in Course information
At this stage of the course most of you will have felt at some point that you are “behind” in some way because you have not done all the scheduled activities.
There is no such thing as “behind” on ocTEL. Let us remind you of the advice we gave at the very beginning of the course.
One of the features of this kind of course design is to present you… with a range of options that can seem over-stimulating at first… Always remember that these are options: you don’t have to do them all.
This is a professional development course, and its designers trust you, as a professional, to make your own judgements about what learning activities are useful to you and which you can skip. The reason there are so many options and alternative ways of spending your time is precisely to give you choice and control over selecting a path that feels right for you.
We recommend that you pace yourself through the course. Don’t worry if, for reasons within or beyond your control, you miss a week. Resist any feelings of guilt or envy when you read about other participants’ interesting activities that you weren’t part of. Try and make time for looking away from the screen and out of the window, letting your mind freewheel on some of the ideas, because that can be a very valuable part of the learning experience.
Some other tips for dealing with the “behind” problem:
- only do one thing — each week we identify an activity that you should do “if you only do one thing” during this week, and if you’ve only got one hour to spend this is how we recommend you spend it;
- do nothing and skip a week (or two) — over the course of ten or eleven weeks, there will be some times when you’re struggling to keep your head above water with your everyday work, let alone course activities. If you have to miss part of the course, do it, and don’t fret about it. The course is sequenced with an order and logic in mind. It is not, however, so linear that you will not be able to learn from a later week if you’ve skipped an earlier one.
[Update, 26 April: This post came about via a discussion with Sue Folly, volunteer tutor-about-town, and Nicola Whitton, lead tutor for Week 3. I should have spotted that Sue had already posted her own excellent set of advice on the same question.]