Breath of Clarity

RPA Course Closure Reflection

A noteworthy lesson I learned from Research Practices and Application is to combine creating outlines of each section with clarifying assignment instructions. Speaking with the professor in a timely manner before a task is due allows for me to overcome obstacles in completing certain steps such as editing a research question or finishing the accumulation of sources. Doing so guarantees a lack of hastiness in production which is usefully transferrable to further graduate courses. Insofar as I implement the lessons, I can refine a paper multiple times and give it the attention needed to reach full potential.

Comment by Edward Segura:

The outlines also provided by the instructor in regards to what he wanted in our assignments as well as detailed instructions were extremely helpful. I also found communication with our professor helpful. This allowed me to build confidence on asking question on certain issues or instructions which did not make sense to me. Essentially you save time when you ask the instructor specific content within your paper. As you reach out, you can avoid mistakes which you can be marked down for when you officially submit your paper for grading. There is always room for improvement in regards to essays and editing. They only get better through each revisions. However, I am glad you found this course relevant and useful towards future courses.

My Comment:

I agree, the assignment outlines were a phenomenal template to use. Specifically, the outlines for the methods section and final presentation supported my time-management in getting the phases of the project done. It also supported me in identifying which specific areas I had questions about.

I also agree asking questions helps saves time. Specifically, when I am stuck on a certain assignment instruction, I have trouble brainstorming. Discussing the instructions with the professor stimulates my creativity so I can draft a certain section of the research paper. Also, asking questions early before the final draft is due makes it so the revision phase is less loaded with a need for edits down the road. It helps keep the rhythm of work moving forward, as opposed to retracting back to fix things. I also appreciate the point you made about how asking the instructor questions throughout the writing process improves one’s grade because that can serve as a motivator for students to reach out who are initially hesitant.

Just as revising supports a student’s paper, it also supports a student’s overall growth. The more we revise, the more skilled we become as a student in all courses. I am glad there is always room for improvements in regards to editing essays because it makes life exciting to constantly have opportunity for growth.

Comment by Casey Kahler:

Great post! I’m glad you brought up speaking to our professors in a timely manner. I for one, have definitely struggled with the adjustment from in-class to all online. I feel as if it’s so much harder to not only form connections with peers but also with our professors. Last quarter reaching out to professors really pushed me out of my comfort zone primarily because I felt as if I didn’t have the same relationship I had prior with in-class lectures. However, I’m so glad I took the leap because it’s amazing the difference it makes to reach out and ensure that you’re on the right track when dealing with confusion. I am glad you had the opportunity to determine that as well!

My Comment:

It is interesting to consider how asking the instructor questions changes with the online scenario. For one thing, it is harder to push oneself to reach out online because everyone is not already gathered in the same room together. In-person interaction also leads to the most direct form of communication and less mis-communication. However, there are also multiple ways to reach out online including a canvas inbox thread, a phone call, a video chat, a separate e-mail. So, it creates a lot of options for someone who is initially hesitant. I am glad we take the leap! Ensuring one is on the right track also leads to more confidence while drafting which results in better ideas and better overall prose. Dealing with the confusion also leads to less procrastination. I am glad professors at University College emphasize the conversation invitation to students, as well.

Comment by Professor Jeral Kirwan:

Great points, Mary. A lot of students prefer face-to-face interactions but some prefer more indirect communication such as email. I like to offer a variety so that I can meet students where they are and in their preferred modality.