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Introduction to Study Skills

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Introduction to Study Skills Prepared by Margaret Macleod Diane Smith and John Thornton For 1004ICT students www.griffith.edu.au/ins/learningservices – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Introduction to Study Skills


1
Introduction to Study Skills
  • Prepared by
  • Margaret Macleod
  • Diane Smith and John Thornton

For 1004ICT students
www.griffith.edu.au/ins/learningservices
2
Objectives
  • To provide some strategies to increase efficiency
    and reduce stress
  • Your time management plan
  • Understanding the assignment process
  • Managing your reading

3
Time management problems?
  • Identify the time management problems you might
    have
  • or already have !!

4
Personal Time Survey
  • 1. Number of hours of sleep each night _ x 7
  • 2. Number of grooming hours per day _ x 7
  • 3. Number of hours for meals/snacks per day
    (include preparation time) _ x 7
  • 4a. Total travel time weekdays _ x 5
  • 4b. Total travel time weekends
  • 5. Number of hours per week for 'regular' things
    (TV, church, sport, exercise, get-togethers etc)
  • 6. No. of hours per day for chores, errands etc _
    x 7
  • 7. No. of hours of work per week
  • 8. No. of average hours per week socialising
  • 9. No. of hours at computer, gaming, email,
    surfing, playing
  • ADD UP THE TOTALS
  • Subtract the above number from 168
  • The remaining hours are the hours you have
    allowed yourself to study.

5
How to manage time...
  • Set realistic learning goals
  • Work out your priorities
  • Get to know how, when and where
  • you work best
  • Create a Semester Plan
  • Create a Weekly Plan
  • Create a daily To Do list
  • Are you procrastinating?

6
Use resources available
  • Resources on your Learning_at_Griffith site
  • Academic staff
  • Learning Services workshops and consultations
  • www.griffith.edu.au/ins/learningservices
  • New students site
  • www.griffith.edu.au/new-students/

7
Reflect on the topic - use concept maps
Unpack the question
Edit the assignment
assignment
Research - making notes as you go
The research and writing process
Write the assignment
Reflect on the question again
Structure the assignment
Plan the assignment
8
What is academic writing?
  • Academic writing is-
  • clear, coherent, logical communication
  • all the content is highly relevant to task
  • key issues are covered
  • extensively uses relevant sources (expert,
    research, statistics, data, examples,evidence,
    theories, models) to support decisions,
    solutions, opinions or analysis)
  • these sources are referenced correctly so they
    may be traced
  • demonstrates critical, analytical, logical and
    coherent thinking

9
Academic conventions
  • The conventions of academic culture and academic
    writing rest on the belief that arguments must be
    supported with evidence
  • so
  • avoid unsupported or emotional opinions
  • dont generalise or make sweeping statements
  • dont ignore opposing arguments, but show why
    they are not sound or applicable
  • develop objective arguments or opinions based on
    evidence
  • use credible material to support your point of
    view

10
Some main problems with essays
  • not answering topic/question clearly
  • not addressing all parts of a topic/question
  • assuming the reader is a mind reader (e.g. no
    dates, definitions)
  • being descriptive instead of analytical
  • not having good introduction/conclusion
  • poor paragraphing
  • faulty structure
  • insufficient or incorrect referencing

11
Academic assignments require many skills
  • Analysis
  • What does the question mean?
  • Research
  • What is relevant? What is my position?
  • Where is evidence to support, justify, explain
    and/or develop my position?
  • Critical thinking and reading
  • Synthesis of information and ideas

12
Where do I start?
  • Common problem
  • many students start researching for a topic
    before they are really ready to do so

Information that doesnt fit
Too much information
Irrelevant information
13
Where do I start?
  • OR
  • they start writing before they are really clear
    about what they want to say

too many or not enough words
No clear points
Poor structure
14
First assessment item
  • Write an essay that provides a descriptive
    understanding of one of the following ideas or
    machines from the history of computing
  • The Leibniz Calculator
  • Babbage's Difference Engines (1 and 2)
  • Babbage's Analytical Engine
  • The Algebra of George Boole
  • The Turing Machine
  • The Zuse Machines (Z1 to Z4)
  • Colossus
  • ENIAC
  • The von Neumann Machine
  • and that also describes the effect of this work
    on the modern world.

15
The research process
  • Analysis
  • unpack a question or research topic
  • draw a concept map
  • Critical reading
  • select and collect relevant resources
  • Reflection
  • develop an argument or position

16
Analysis
  • What does the topic ask me to do?
  • What problem am I asked to solve?
  • You need to think critically and unpack the
    question/topic
  • 4 steps...

17
Unpack the topic
  • FIRST read carefully course outline
    (aims/learning outcomes)
  • ask if I were the academic teaching this course,
    WHY would I have set THIS task?
  • try linking your topic to one or several course
    aims
  • What content/skills is this assignment related
    to?
  • Concept mapping this may help

18
Concept map
Theoretical understanding of the nature of
computing
Critical understanding of the application
of computer technology
Historical perspective on the development of
computer technology
content
Foundations of Computing And Communication
Communication skills -interpersonally Group
situations
Present a well- balanced argument
skills
Critically appraise differing viewpoints
Independent research
19
Unpack the topic
  • SECOND read carefully any marking criteria
  • The marking criteria may provide additional clues
    to what is expected from you

20
Unpack the topic
  • THIRD
  • ASK What are the directive, key, and limiting
    words?
  • Directive words give directions
  • Key words the major concepts
  • Limiting words provide boundaries

21
Example...
  • Write an essay that provides a descriptive
    understanding of one of the following ideas or
    machines from the history of computing
  • and that also describes the effect of this work
    on the modern world
  • Directive words provide a descriptive
    understanding describe
  • Key words idea or machine history of computing
    modern world
  • Limiting words one of effect of

22
Unpack the topic
  • FOURTH
  • consider turning topic into questions
  • (primary and secondary questions)
  • NB your argument is your answer to the primary
    question
  • evaluate importance of questions
  • (descriptive versus analytical)

23

Example...
Example
  • Primary questions How does this machine/idea
    work? And What effects has it had on the modern
    world?
  • Secondary questions
  • What key concepts need to be explained to
    understand this machine/idea?
  • How do these concepts relate/fit together?
  • Who invented the machine/idea?
  • How was the invention related to this persons
    other work?
  • What was the historical context of the invention?
  • How/why did this effect/impact on the modern
    world?
  • How/why is this machine/idea important?

24
Analyse and Organise
  • Think about the answers to these questions
  • You might try concept mapping the question and
    any answers or ideas you already have (go back to
    course outline for clues)
  • Tables are another way of collecting and
    organising information
  • NB Concept maps and tables can be refined as
    you go along

25
NOW research!
  • What is research?
  • Finding quality information to
  • answer questions
  • develop an argument
  • support an argument
  • You need to
  • analyse that information (where can I use it)
  • evaluate that information (strengths, weaknesses)
  • synthesise that information (relationships)

26
Researching
  • Look in
  • journals (particularly peer reviewed)
  • books
  • reference lists/bibliographies
  • databases and printed indexes
  • original research (eg published theses)
  • internet (careful! Anyone can publish)

27
Preliminary Planning and Mapping
  • Reflect on what you have read
  • Revise concept map or notes
  • Clarify your main point of view/opinion/argument
  • Your answer to the main question
  • What points will you make to develop this
    argument?
  • What evidence do you have to support these
    points?

28
Plan the Assignment
  • Organise your essay so that the key points flow
    in a logical order
  • Try
  • categories (headings/ sub headings)
  • outlines (e.g. dot points)
  • concept maps
  • flow charts

29
Plan the Assignment
  • How will you go about organising your material ?
  • Try several different ways of organising your
    information
  • Keep related points together avoid unnecessary
    repetition

30
Planning examples
  • Main point
  • supporting detail
  • relevance to topic
  • Main point
  • supporting detail
  • relevance to topic
  • Main point
  • supporting detail
  • relevance to topic

31
Planning - try boxes!
  • each box represents a paragraph
  • in pencil, write one main point only in each box
  • reorganise the order of boxes
  • check that you have a sufficient number of boxes
    for your word length

32
Reflect on the topic - use concept maps
Unpack the question
Edit the assignment
assignment
Research - making notes as you go
The research and writing process
Write the assignment
Reflect on the question again
Structure the assignment
Plan the assignment
33
Managing your reading
  • Read for a purpose
  • Techniques
  • SQ3R

34
Reading at University
  • Reading texts at university is not the same as
    reading a novel !!
  • This means that rarely do you need to
  • Read every word of a text
  • Start at the first word and continue methodically
    to the last word
  • It may help to see your task as information
    seeking and organising rather than reading

35
What is your purpose?
  • How you read depends on your purpose (why you are
    reading).
  • You need to vary your rate and style of reading
    according to the type of material and your
    purpose for reading it
  • Your purpose could include
  • Enjoyment? It happens sometimes!
  • General overview/knowledge? Before lectures,
    tutorials etc
  • Short term information? Essays etc
  • Long term information? Exams

36
Reading techniques
  • Skim to get overview. Read chapter headings,
    sub-headings etc
  • Scan slower than skimming. Search for particular
    points, information
  • Speed General overview no detail, minimal
    comprehension
  • Critical for in-depth understanding

37
SQ3R (Derek Rowntree)
  • Survey
  • Question
  • Read
  • Recall
  • Review

38
SQ3R - Survey
  • Try to get a general understanding of the
    contents
  • Scan
  • title
  • headings
  • summaries
  • Abstract

39
SQ3R - Question
  • Look for answers to questions you make up the
    questions. For example
  • What is this article or chapter about?
  • How is this relevant to the course
  • You can also turn titles or headings/sub-headings
    into questions, and read looking for answers

40
SQ3R 1. Read
  • Read material more than once
  • Read initially without taking notes, looking for
    answers to questions
  • Read again, noting key points and important
    details in your own words
  • Adapted from http/www.lc.unsw.edu.au/onlib/read2.
    html

41
SQ3R 2. Recall
  • Try to remember what you have read
  • Recite or jot down what you remember
  • Check against text and notes

42
SQ3R 3. Review
  • Review material, notes at end of study period
  • check accuracy of notes against texts
  • Review at regular intervals
  • Re-read notes
  • Answer questions from memory
  • Adapted from http/www.lc.unsw.edu.au/onlib/read2.
    html

43
Effect of systematic revision on recall
44
Contacting a Learning Advisor
  • Learning Advisers from Learning Services provide
    free learning assistance for all undergraduate
    and postgraduate students from all campuses of
    Griffith University
  • Gold Coast Campus G10 2.22
  • Phone 5552 8109
  • Email academicskills_at_griffith.edu.au
  • Web address www.griffith.edu.au/ins/learningservi
    ces
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