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Sunday, 14 December 2008

Bin a long time

Apologies may be due to the regular readers of this missive, both of whom may have felt a certain sense of something being absent in that YNWA has been AWOL recently. Alas, and alack, the extingencies of life have most assuredly taken over and ruled out the possibilities of new informative postings. Light though, has returned to YNWA in the form of end of term assignments being completed, extensions having been built and cats returning, if not to normal, at least to a kind of uneasy peace.
Firstly on UNiversity, I beg forgiveness for repeating myself, but assignments are a competitive sport. Therefore all the energies previously put into my personal writings, both musical and proto-literary have gone into my school work. It has not been easy - anthropology, my Free elective has genuinely challenged and engaged, posing the problem of being too interested in the subject matter at hand. MYOL(Manage your own Learning) the subjec that brought "do" words (or 'verbs' as normal people call them) has brought it's own challenges, because despite winning a reprieve from the lectures I still have to write the assignement for this module. This presents some difficulties. The assignement title is a s follows:

"With reference to published material, evaluate and reflect on your study skills at the start of the module and produce an action plan showing how you will develop these skills further". THe italicisations are entirely my own. As these particular words floated off the page my hackles, if I had any, would have raised. The topic is presented by a lecturer who has an enthusiasm for the vague notiuons of Learning styles and Reflective Learning, Blairite concepts as meaningless as the phrase we collectively encountered some months ago - "worklessness". There is a world of focus groups, market 'research', 'military intelligence' and other oxymoronic new-speak at work here that frankly makes me want to reach for the sick bucket and declare sports journalists as the natural, cliche-free inheritirs of Shakespeare. despite this, and the fact that I want to write a very short, very terse riposte to this University- level essay. I still have to keep eyes on the prize. Somehow, 2000 precious words, words which would undoubtedly be better occupied describing something meaningful, have to be persuaded to join eachother on a page in response to this abominably meaningless assignment.

With that in mind, I can introduce to you, exclusively, the paragraph which did not make it into the final essay on this excrucuating topic. The paragraph read as follows:

In some texts (REFERENCE) study skills are closely linked to the concept of Learning Styles, and participants are encouraged to investigate their learning style as an aid to improving their study skills. The concept revolves around the (unproven) notion that differing individuals have differing learning styles and that identification, and awareness of, one’s own learning style assists the development of study skills because each learning style has strengths and weaknesses. Strengths can be built upon, weakness can be minimised by adaptation of whatever style the subject may be. I can go no further without commenting that this has about as much validity as asking a bricklayer to uncover their ‘hidden diva’. Reflective learning is also encouraged in some texts although evidence for this particular pile of drivel is as rare as rocking horse shit.

I have to also report that I sucked it up, and in Nel's phraseology "Did not do a Ken". "Doing a Ken" refers to the absolute rule of University and life in general, in that there is definitely a time and a place for highly original thought, BUT that place is definitely not as an undergraduate. It may be cynical of me, but my role as an undergraduate is to achieve as high marks as possible, NOT to think originally.

On the house, we are progressing. I know I have promised pictures for some time, but my ageing camera, time and the fact that these projects come together very quickly at the end have prevented photographic updates. All I can say at this moment is that Concretia has been defeated. The only evidence I have for this is a picture taken tonight, throught th ebedroom window, of our erection that now stands in its place. On that note I will close, having two more assignments to complete:

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