Weim – a – what?

‘Weim – a – what’ is the response I get every time I tell someone I’m getting a Weimaraner. The first thing my mum said to me was “umm have you been to the doctor for that?”. Ahh, what? Awkwarddd. No mum, a Weimeraner is a dog! One of the cutest dogs in the whole entire world. *insert high pitched voice* Just look at how cute they are… Continue reading Weim – a – what?

File Management and Backing Up

Imagine losing a week’s worth of writing you have done for an essay, or worse, a whole semester’s work.

There has been a huge shift towards computer based means of storing and delivering information. There are many benefits to this, and the main one I can think of is not having to carry around heavy books. For the tech savvy, the convenience of storing all of your photos, homework, music, movies, and work documents in one place is too good to pass up. With this convenience comes a risk: that your laptop or hard drive will break, crash, be stolen, or misplaced and you could lose everything. Even losing a few days’ worth of university work can be a huge setback. Continue reading File Management and Backing Up

Polish Your Work Before You Hand It In

Is the due date coming soon? No confidence with your assignment? Many students will face this problem during their study at university. Fortunately, technology makes our life much easier, even in writing. There are many grammar check websites that are available online, which assist you to check your work and give you some suggestions. Sounds great, doesn’t it? Continue reading Polish Your Work Before You Hand It In

Communication with Lecturers and Academic Staff

To start off, I am not saying that I am a communications champion or anything like that. In fact, being a mature age student my mind is boggled by the way that people these days communicate with each other on social media.  When I was growing up we rode our bikes to our friend’s house and knocked on the door to see if they were home, or if allowed we would make a phone call to see if they were home. To communicate with someone long distance we would write a letter because the cost of a phone call could cripple the economy. Continue reading Communication with Lecturers and Academic Staff

Never Work with Children

So after hours of organising I have finally got the children to sit down in front of the TV to watch their favourite show on Netflix. They have snacks, drinks and their favourite teddy bears. I should be able to get at least an hour out of them to finish working on my assignment that’s due at the end of the week, right…? WRONG! No sooner than I sit down and turn the computer on, I hear the dreaded “Muumm, Nate’s hitting me!” (insert frustrated face). I go down and sit them on separate sides of the couch and promise that if I can have just an hour to do some work, I will take them outside to play afterwards.

I know it’s not ideal, but bribery is one of the only ways I can get some time to work. Having 3 children ranging from 2 to 7 years old they are not at the point where they understand deadlines and “mummy has an assignment due”.  So in an attempt to get a little time to myself, I resort to bribing them with TV, food, drinks and some play time afterwards. I know — bad parenting moment — but as a student, mother, wife, housekeeper and taxi (just to name a few of my roles) there never seems to be enough hours in the day to get what I need to get done.

Anyway, back to trying to steal an hour to do some homework. Did this end well? Did I get any work done? Did the children sit down and watch TV as planned? The answer to all of these is: NO! In between the dirty nappy, the spilt drink, the fighting and the crying, I achieved nothing. NOTHING!

So here’s my advice on trying to study with children: try and plan your week so that you get as much study done when you’re not home. Then when you are at home you can focus on being mummy and the many other roles you play. It is ok to say that this is important to me and I need some time without the kids to get it done. Ask your partner, your family and friends and, if finances permit, get a babysitter or try the kids in day care. In an effort to keep these two role separate on the days I am at Uni, I stay later and get my husband to do the school/day care pick up. This allows me time after my classes to get my study done. Then when I get home the kids can have my complete attention as I am not distracted with what homework I have to do. During the busy times when assessments are due I may even come out to the Uni on the weekends for a few hours and I achieve a lot more in a couple of hours than I would all day at home trying to bribe the kids.

If you do find yourself in the position of having to study while you’re at home with the kids I have found that the kids are happier to allow me a few minutes to myself if I break it into smaller intervals. Start by asking them to do an activity or watch a show for 20 minutes while you work and then you will come and play with them. If you continue this cycle you will at least reduce the stress on yourself.

Remember that it is ok to put yourself first sometimes, and don’t allow the parental guilt to creep in. You are important and what you are trying to achieve is important as well. Think of the positive role modelling you are doing at times when you feel you have been away from the children too much. Remember: it is the quality, not the quantity, of time you spend with the kids.

– Bonnie

The Low Down on The B-wick (or Berwick Campus)

So I’m sure everyone knows by now that FedUni’s got a new campus at Berwick, or as everyone calls it: The B-wick. (Ok, so maybe no-one calls it that…yet. It’s pretty catchy, it’s got a nice ring to it, it’s gonna catch on, trust me). FedUni picked up the campus last year as part of Monash’s fire sale of campuses.

As far as I’m concerned, they got a pretty good deal.  This place is pretty nice, even if it is just for first-years at this point. Want to know more? Well, let me lay it out so you can play it out. Continue reading The Low Down on The B-wick (or Berwick Campus)

Harry Potter Plotholes Debunked! And 18 Things You May Not Know About Harry Potter.

 

Wondering why things happened the way they did when clearly there is another option? Here are 5 common Harry Potter ‘plotholes’ debunked.

1. Why was the time turner not used to save countless lives instead of just Buckbeaks? Well supposedly going more than a few hours in the past is irreparably catastrophic, thus Harry can’t save his parents. But what about more recent deaths? Well the time turner is susceptible to paradoxes. This means that if Harry went back to ‘move’ Sirius out of the way of the killing curse in HP5, Sirius would live and thus there be no reason for Harry to come back in the first place to save him. Yet for Hermione to go to another class (the time turners original purpose for her), is not changing the events that unfold to such a massive degree. “Mysterious thing, Time. Powerful, and when meddled with, dangerous.” Continue reading Harry Potter Plotholes Debunked! And 18 Things You May Not Know About Harry Potter.

To New Students, Welcome! And to Old Students, Welcome Back!

The start of semester is now here, for some of you this is a brand new exciting adventure, for others it is a slightly agonising process of dragging yourself back into university mode after the lovely, yet lengthy summer holidays.  Whichever group you belong to, the university is going to be a bit hectic, especially during the first few weeks.

New students will be running around trying to find their feet, struggling to find classes, teachers and where to get a decent coffee. Old students will most likely be trying to avoid the busyness, and groaning at the excessive amount of time it has taken them to find a car park, leaving them precious minutes to dash to their lecture.

Both groups will possibly be feeling quite overwhelmed, and a little stressed out. It is important at the start of the semester to get a little organised — make a game plan for your studies, and how that is going to work in with your social and work life. You need to know what the important things to be aware of are, and who to talk to if you are starting to struggle.

The most important thing to remember is if you are struggling, or have any queries, or concerns: ask. It doesn’t matter if you are a new student, or a returning student. The best thing to do if you don’t know something, are unsure, or just need to discuss something is to ask, and talk to someone about things.

No one ever really jumps for joy when they hear the phrase ‘time management’, but it is an important part of succeeding at university, and not only university but life in general. It doesn’t have to be the horrendous task that it is made out to be — you can start out small, buy a diary and write down when all your assessments are due, and block out deliberate time to work on that task. Unfortunately, assessments don’t write themselves. Remember that time is the currency of life, so spend it wisely!

Another important thing to keep in mind at university is the need to maintain a social life. Being a university student should also be a social experience. You can meet new people and form friendships with individuals who have similar interests to you. Don’t be afraid to get involved! Become part of the university community, and I guarantee it will make your whole university experience that much more enjoyable!

This leads me to my final piece of advice: be aware of yourself. Self-care is vital. Know your limits, and make sure that you take care of yourself. If you start to struggle with this at any point, we have numerous services available to assist you. That is what they are here for so don’t feel bad for accessing them — everyone needs assistance from time to time.

 

There are these services and more:

  • PASS: Peer Assisted Study Sessions, these sessions are offered for 1st year classes that have been deemed difficult, to offer students extra assistance. These sessions are ran by students who completed the subject to a high academic standard, and wish to assist other students do the same.
  • ASK service: This is staffed by your Student Academic Leaders. This is where you go to ask any university related question, and if the question doesn’t fall within our area of expertise we will know exactly where to refer you to, to ensure that you get the best assistance possible.
  • Learning Skills Advisors: Here to assist you with improving your academic skills, whether that be polishing up your writing style, getting used to university language, or all those tricky referencing and formatting queries.
  • Writing Space: A designated study area within the library in which Learning Skills Advisors, or Student Academic Leaders sit, and are available to assist you whilst you study.
  • YourTutor/Checkmate: Online assistance, where you can ask questions, and submit essays asking for specific assistance with things such as grammar, flow and similar queries.
  • Counselling Services: You can book appointments with skilled counsellors to listen and assist you with stressors that you may be struggling with.
  • Disability Liaison Unit: Here to help people who may be suffering from a physical or mental health concern. This may be for long and short term assistance. If you need help with planning around your anxiety, or have done a sporting injury that hinders your ability to perform at university these guys are here to help you.
  • Health Centres: Because who doesn’t like conveniently located nurses to assist with your medical concerns, when you’re a busy uni student?

Whatever your concerns, we are here to help you! Don’t be afraid to ask. I promise we don’t bite, and are quite friendly and eager to assist you in achieving your university goals!

Good luck in your studies!

Angel