The art of preparation

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    It’s been two weeks since I took my exam and I was quite shocked to find out I’ll be back in class in another two weeks’ time. It wasn’t really a discovery per se – I knew I’d be back at Uni in early January – but the speed in which time has passed has rather caught me off guard. The readings I’d so diligently picked up in preparation of next term have now found their way to the corner of a bookshelf and have been gathering what I can only imagine to be a thin layer of dust, as I’ve been focusing all my efforts on ploughing through the mountains of work ahead of some time away from the office during the Christmas holidays. That’s time away from class focusing on work , not resting nor regrouping for next term – even though I gave it my best shot.

    Ironically, when first contemplating a Postgrad degree I wondered whether to apply for a full-time or part-time degree. It may seem a strange to dwell on such musings when I’m in full-time employment but it’s far from being unheard of. One of my former colleagues has recently undertaken a MBA whilst in full-time employment and managed to finish her degree in 18 months.

    Meanwhile during my Undergraduate studies I never took any time off, I did an exchange programme during one of my summer holidays, and more or less started my professional career straight after graduation (although there were a few months of a fairly tedious hiatus). All in all, I’ve been used to a moderate to fast pace all my life to the point of prejudice – was a part-time degree perhaps not too  sparse to cope with?

    It certainly hasn't been and I’m extremely pleased I ultimately decided it was best to pace myself, even if it would take me an extra year to complete my degree. Between work and studies I now have a ridiculously busy life; I shudder to think what it would be like being in full-time employment AND full-time education. How much reading would I really  be able to get through then? And how many weekends would I have to come into the office by having to excuse myself for class during weekdays?

    Notwithstanding work impeding further preparation for spring term, the tutors themselves haven’t really been living up to their end of the deal. I’ve not yet received markings for my exam nor – rather alarmingly – for my assignment, which I submitted over 6 weeks ago. The assignment, which was partly to serve as preparation for the exam – and which obviously hasn’t – should now surely serve as preparation for next term’s assignment…? One can only hope.

    ‘A bit of a joke’ as described by a fellow student and to which I would have to agree. I have deadlines of my own – as a student and  a professional I’m expected to attend meetings on certain dates at certain times, complete and submit work, not to mention pay tuition fees within a certain time frame. In education the onus seems to always lay on students, but surely tutors should be equally accountable for keeping to their own deadlines?

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