With the help of the Gibbs model for reflection I have written the below reflective essay. I have chosen this model for reflection cause: Firstly it is simple to understand and secondly it follows a very systematic and easy approach. As I began with the module I was quite happy that it has been included in the course, as it would help me overcome academic writing skills difficulties. Although, initially I did feel that the module would only aim at giving academic support, but eventually I realized that like its name suggests it also helped develop my personalities as well.
In this module, we were given to make a poster and a formal report. In this way I felt the module evaluates an individual in different ways and on different aspects. By making a poster the creativity of an individual can be evaluated. Poster presentations are becoming common at workplaces and the first assignment helped us have an experience on how to make on. The second assignment was a critical report based on the same article we used for the poster. This assignment helped us improve our critical skills and present it in a formal report structure.
Since we had to critique only one report it was quite difficult as there were nothing to compare it to. We only had theories as a base to help us write the critique. Whilst doing research for the report, I came across a learning styles model by Honey and Mumford. The model is given as below. Peter Honey and Alan Mumford (1992) connected each stage in this learning cycle with a preferred learning style: Stage 1 Having an experience – Activist Stage 2 Reflecting on the experience -Reflector Stage 3? Concluding from the experience -Theorist Stage 4?
Acting differently as a result/planning the next steps- Pragmatist As I read about what each part meant I could completely relate myself to the Activist part of the model. I am generally very enthusiastic about things and like to be in power whenever in a group discussion. It gives me a sense of satisfaction. Also when we were given discussions in the Tutorial to undertake I would tend to lead and chair the group. Something that is not is that just as the model suggests even I tend to act and then consider the implications afterwards. This is one attitude of mine that I am trying to hange and adapt to a reflector model where I consider the implications of my actions before acting on them. As it is famously said “Think twice before you act”. I must inculcate this proverb in my acts of life. Many a times when I introspect on my learning altitudes I also feel that a part of me is the Pragmatist learner. As I mentioned earlier I am always enthusiastic and keen to learn and experience new things. I always understand concepts faster which I can relate to practical experiences in the past and apply to my job in future. Just as the theory states even I tend to generally get impatient with lengthy discussions and conversations.
From a pragmatist point I want to try to improve my patience level especially in lengthy discussions as often in workplaces lengthy discussions are carried out. Personally when I looked at the theorist attitude I felt I could not fit there but should try to adopt some of its attributes such as trying to be a perfectionist. Applying this concept to my PRS module when I was given the poster to do, I did not think much. I just looked up a few posters and got down to making my poster. It was later that I realized I should have first had discussions with my class mates on how they are approaching the assignment.
By then I had already acted like an activist but it was time to become a reflector and overcome my hasty behavior. Hence, before I started critiquing the article with my peers and only then got down to do some relevant reading. Coming back to the first assignment. I quite enjoyed making the poster much more than the report as the poster involved using creativity. While I was writing the report I felt quite dull and boring as a format had very formal approach. This is when I realized that I need to increase my interest for formal writing.
Reflecting the Gibbs way I have reached the Analysis stage. To this I concluded that maybe more reading around the topic and reading a few sample reports would have probably helped to do it better along with more interest. For that I have thought I must plan a minimum amount of reading target to be set. And undertake detailed discussions with my class mates on a regular basis apart from the one’s that happen in the tutorials. On a general note, during the module when the topic of report writing was being covered, I had doubts but felt they were too silly to ask the module tutor.
Due to this I had numerous difficulties while starting the critical report. I have decided not to fear from people judging me and go ahead and ask the questions to clear my doubts. In fact I did start acting on it and did start questioning tutors and friends. I realized I should have done this much before. The Personal and Research skills module has taught me about researching which gave me a sense of self confidence on something I wasn’t sure I could do. Or rather knew how to do. Before I joined the master’s course I was quite friendly with MS Office.
But some of the tutorials and lectures on IT skills helped me enhance my technical skills prezi, a very interesting application was unknown to me. After the lecture I downloaded it and started to see its features. I have always been interested in enhancing my technical skills in any form. Because in today’s tech savvy corporate environment one is considered un-updated if they do not poses skills. Referencing was a very new concept to me. Initially, I just could not get my head around it. One of the PRS lecture taught us how to use ref works. Now, I just do not need to bother with journal articles referencing.
Refworks had made it so easy. I have particularly mentioned about Prezi and refworks as these were two highlighting factors that I found in the module, very helpful in making my coursework manageable. As I attended the lectures I felt that the PRS model has been formatted in a way to help students do their coursework and acquire the intellectual and technical skills required to complete the MSC in Human Resource Management at Robert Gordon University. Before I came I had heard that RGU has a high performance demand. I felt this module was designed, to make sure that students meet up to it.
The good part of this modules experience is it does actually help you acquire the Personal and Research skills that it aims to. But in my opinion the module was a little insufficient in providing writing skills, especially for international students who are doing this form of studies for the first time. But as I thought of it I felt it is the master level and everything cannot be fed on a spoon to the students. To this thought I felt, I need to put in some more effort from my side maybe through taking help of the study skills help available.
I have come to a belief now that at masters teachers are more of a catalyst then an ingredient to our masters degree. On a concluding note, the Personal Research skills module in my opinion is essential for every business related course. Maybe if I had had something like this while doing my degree it would have been more helpful at a master’s level. But whether at a master or at a degree it is an essential model helping an individual to develop ass sorts of skills needed in today’s competitive business environment. References: HONEY, P. and MUMFORD, A. , 1992. The manual of learning styles