Becoming an Independent Learner Louise Livesey Academic Skills Adviser This workshop will... −Explore what is required to become an independent learner

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Managing Your Time

Becoming an Independent LearnerLouise LiveseyAcademic Skills AdviserThis workshop will...Explore what is required to become an independent learnerLook at the basic principles of how to achieve successHelp students develop assignment and exam checklists

1Todays PlanHow does it feel to be here?What is an independent learner?What do I have to do to be an independent learner?How to achieveAssignment and exam checklists2All in one click1.How does it feel to be here?Take a breath and think about this for a momentWrite on the Post-it note whether positive or negativePlace it on the wall/boardActivity 1: How do you feel about being a Uni student? 31 minute to write down1.How does it feel to be here?Most students will feel scared and overwhelmed at some point it is to be expected and normal!

Its common to feel doubtful and worried

4This is how you may feel now but this is how you will feel during your course1.How does it feel to be here?Learning at Uni is just another skill; it gets easier with practice

Experience is usually more important than intelligence!

52.What is an independent learner?Manages own studyChoses and interprets books to readDecides what to put in and structure of assignmentsManages their timeSelf-motivated, disciplined and focusedIs organisedChooses extra-curricular activities appropriately

62.What is an independent learner?Benefits: Control over study and spare timeControl over when, where and how to studyMore responsibility for own success

Solutions to challenges:Develop a timetable and routineChoose activities to develop skillsWork out best place, time and way/s to study for youCreate targets and action plansRead everything and act on it

73.What do I have to do to be an independent learner?Motivate yourselfStick to your timetableTake notes in lectures and from sourcesThink critically by questioning everythingUse the library and relevant IT programmesConcentrateRemember and understand ResearchWrite 83.What do I have to do to be an independent learner?You are not alone!9Surface or Deep Learning?What is the difference between students who get top grades and rest?Answer: They read more!

What is the best way to remember stuff?Answer: Write it out make notes!

(Marton and Slj, 1976)

4.How to achieveFerence & Roger104.How to achievePeople see the extraordinary feats of others but not the unwavering commitment and countless hours of perseverant effort that produced them

(Bandura,1997: 119)

People who do more work, achieve more!

115.Assignment and exam checklistsIn pairs or small groups, create a checklist for you to follow for writing your first assignment. What might you do? Where might you go?Activity: Your first assignment checklist12ActionCheck handbook; read brief/criteria; look at Blackboard (read feedback from last assignment)Go to library; search for texts (books and journal articles) from reading list; find other textsRead basic texts first followed by harder ones; search for recent articles online.Make rough notes; sort rough notes into categories; decide on relevant categories; decide on key points in each category; sort key points into a list. Make an assignment plan/structure: list of categories/areas and key points + the evidence (references)Write first draft linking your key points and using evidence; proofread your draft; amend; repeat until happyCheck handbook for hand-in requirements; hand in. Get feedback; read feedback; reflect; file feedback; plan what you will do differently to improveCreate an assignment checklist to stay organised!5.Assignment and exam checklists13

Exams (are) opportunities to show what you know rather than tests to show what you do not know.

5.Assignment and exam checklists(Moran, 2000: 139)14SummaryIts common to feel doubtful and worriedExperience and hard work is usually more important than intelligence!Know where you can go for information and assistanceCreate assignment and exam checklist to stay organised and motivated!

ReferencesBandura, A. (1997). Self-Efficacy: The Exercise of Control. New York: Freeman.

Cottrell, S. (2013) The Study Skills Handbook. 4th ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.

Marton F. and Slj R. (1976) On qualitative differences in learning Outcome and Process. British Journal of Educational Psychology. 46, pp. 4-11. [online] Available at: [Accessed 10.6.2014]

Moran, A. (2000) Managing Your Own Learning at University. Dublin: University College Dublin Press.

All visuals: worry/smile/old/runner/finish line/question Clip Art Skills Advice ServiceWhere are we? Chesham Building B0.23What do we do? Support undergraduate students with their study skills by running clinics and workshops, having bookable appointment slots, and enabling students to drop-in for Instant Advice.Who are we? Michael and Helen specialise in Maths Support; Lucy and Russell advise students on study skills; and I (Louise) deliver the workshopsWhen can you come for help? Everyday both face to face and on-lineHow do I get in touch? Email: or website questions?

Produced by Louise Livesey May 2014



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