Massey University CareerplaNZ

Career and student learning issues brought to you by Massey University’s Careers Service – New Zealand

Archive for February, 2008

It is a funny thing about life

Posted by John Ross on February 18, 2008

“It is a funny thing about life: if you refuse to accept anything but the best you very often get it” (W. Somerset Maugham).

Well, I guess I like this quote and I guess that I’m thinking it might tempt you to carry on reading this blog entry!  It’s themed around commitment – can I stay the course in my studies, will I ever see the end of them and what can I do when things get in the way? I also guess that I’ve got to begin by asking “why are you studying, or thinking of it?”

It goes without saying (but, of course, I’ll say it anyway!) commitment can be much, much easier if you’re studying something that you’re passionate about, interested in and doing well in.  Also, if there are goals to your studies and support around you.  There’s a place in this too for planning – are your studies well organised and can you see a clear, logical pathway through them?

If you’re studying at Massey, or thinking of doing so, our Student Liaison Advisers are great people to contact for help with planning your studies, and with navigating a path through them. Neatly, they’re based around the country so you may well find that there’s one in your area who can meet with you face-to-face. Equally, the people noted under ‘contacts’ on the web pages for each of Massey’s colleges can help too, as can our on-line information and enrolment books.

Note too that some of these people go on the road, once a year (around October/November), with me for Staying on Track – road shows designed for current and prospective students distance students who can drop in to explore their next academic and career steps.

Where distance study through Massey appeals to you, it’s well worth taking a look at the ‘planning your study’ section on the extramural pages of our website – and the ‘extramural study information’ and ‘extramural study options’ sections.   For those with assignments to do, ‘hot off the presses’ is our Assignment Timeline Calculator and, for all types of help with your studies, there’s an on-line academic support request form.

In this, and in my previous two or three blog entries, we’ve been looking at some of the challenges that distance students might face. You’ll have seen that we’ve also explored some of the support on hand here at Massey.  This might seem like a shameless plug for what is, after all, the place that pays me.  However, I genuinely think that they’re pretty good and they were one of the reasons I applied to work here.  So – given that – we’ll carry on with the theme of challenges and countering them.   

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Posted in Blogs, Career, Choosing a course, Distance Education, Distance Learning, Happiness, Massey University, New Zealand, Student, Studying, Tertiary Education, Thinking of study, Uncategorized, University | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

I am what I am…

Posted by John Ross on February 5, 2008

Setting out on a university education is a scary thing for many, many people.  It’s natural to wonder ‘am I doing the right thing, have I chosen the right course, will I be able to cope, will I make friends and what will I do if things don’t work out?’ 

Within all of these concerns is the question of confidence – confidence in yourself and confidence in the choices that you’re making. It’ll probably come as no great surprise to you but people tend to do better on courses that they enjoy.  Doing well, in turn, boosts your confidence in your abilities.

This leads me to stress – do your research!  Consider what you want from a course, from an institution and from your time as a student.  In true career adviser style I’ve got to say that career choice could be one factor in your choice of studies.  Another could be how the qualifications that interest you are structured.  At Massey, any one of a team of Student Liaison Advisers can help with this – and with navigating a path through your studies.  So too can our booklet Choosing a career or major. 

Remember too that it’s OK to ask for help.  All universities have a host of support services available to help students to remain in, enjoy, make the most of and succeed at university.  Here at Massey this includes the study and exams skills, essay and assignment writing, report writing and referencing help offered by our Student Learning Centre – help that can, amongst other things, boost your confidence by boosting your grades and developing your full learning potential! See also, our On-line Writing and Learning Link. 

Check out our Assignment Pre-Reading Service. too.  This innovative and well-received service for our distance students offers them the opportunity to email up to two assignments per semester to a writing consultant for pre-reading (to obtain comments on structure and style) before submitting the assignment for marking.  Active participation in any of their regional workshops can also be a confidence-booster – very often you’ll find yourself in a room full of like minds, people with similar worries, concerns and questions as you – and the same applies to those who take part in any on-line learning element and/or contact course elements of their studies.

Alongside the Student Learning Centre are additional support services such as Massey’s Student Counselling Service – in particular see their publication ‘Dealing with low self-esteem’ if self-confidence is an issue for you.  Not to be overlooked too, is support for dealing with IT issues – getting to grips with the technology that is used increasingly in distance learning can  be a huge aid to confidence.

While we’re on ‘getting to grips’ what about the crucial getting to grips with how your work will be assessed issue?  You can find out more about this here. Finally, how about hearing from some who have been there and done that?  You can do so here.

Posted in Blogs, Career, Choosing a course, Distance Education, Distance Learning, Happiness, Massey University, New Zealand, Student, Studying, Tertiary Education, Thinking of study, Uncategorized, University | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »