First of all, it was my birthday yesterday 29/11/2014 and I’m so excited and grateful to be purposefully alive in good health and celebrating with family and friends. It’s been quite the work keeping up with calls, text messages and Facebook messages from well-wishers all around the world but who am I to complain? I’m enjoying the birthday attention either way.
Second of all, let me apologize for the loooooong silence. November has been a hectic month at work and compiling that with school and other extras has been quite overwhelming! (And maybe just a little bit of the infamous "thief of time" won't just let me write something!). To be frank, the past month that I’ve been off grid, I got to fully realize how involving the ODL program is. I try to imagine how much work I would actually have if I was undertaking the full-time study. At some point, I scheduled a Skype appointment with an IAD representative to aid my understanding of the ODL and we had a very fruitful discussion. In addition, we discussed extensively on tools and resources for time management among other things. Taking all of these into context, I view this “challenges” from a positive perspective of continuous personal development and capacity building as an individual and as a professional. It is also a privilege and opportunity to increase my ability to multi-task effectively.
So yaaay! Vicky Ware, a current ODLstudent, came up with this grand idea of setting up an online forum on Facebook called ODLEdSoc. She set the page up for all past, current and aspiring ODL students from University of Edinburgh to “meet”, interact, socialize and share experiences and ideas. I truly commend her for this and the overall response has been great. I join the social forum and got to meet new people, meet my course-mates (again!) on a more relaxed social level and even got to interact fully with a third year student of my course of study from my country! He even gave me some orientation and tips on using the discussion forum to increase my chances of getting more marks, literature search and how to interpret the Turnitin results on assignments submitted. I do hope soon that the social forum becomes a standardized officially recognized society in the University, if possible. For all ODL students who have not joined the Facebook page, you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or just send a request to join the page ODLEdSoc on Facebook while including some form of recognizable school ID. It could just be your school ID number. All prospective ODL students can do the same - send an email requesting to join the Facebook page.
Finally, end of term is very near and as much as I can’t wait for to have some kind of breather and enjoy the upcoming holidays, I’ll miss the “company” of my course-mates and our weekly discussions. And apart from making sure I submit my assignments before the deadline, this is also an opportunity for me to refresh my memory by going through my course materials and discussion forum again. You never can tell what useful information you have missed therein. I wish you all the best as we approach end of term and end of year. And I wish you great success in your upcoming examinations and assignments.