Diary of a Postgrad Student – no failure only feedback

Smiley face firework from display at Dundee Lochee park on Sunday

Before you worry, it’s ok, I didn’t fail my first assignment. But I didn’t do very well in it either.

Let’s have a bit of context here.

This was a paper that required me to pick a topic, do research, gather alternate views and write a discussion/analysis using references to explain my position.

I have never had to write anything like this before. I have never had to consider other people’s opinions when write my own. I have never had to cite other people. I have always had to make my writing readable and understandable by all. In a scientific paper you don’t have to do that. The writing is very technical and non-personal.

It was daunting. So I think I did really well to pass.

I read through the comments and I totally understand what the lecturer was looking for. I see why my paper didn’t cut it. I understand better how to construct my argument using other people’s data as reference.

I’ve got to say it was fascinating.

I have learnt so much by messing up.

And that’s the thing you see, you can only learn by messing up. Messing up and having another go at it. I have another paper due at the end of November. It will be an interesting exercise to change my writing style based on the feedback.

You see, it’s not that I’m no good. It’s just that I don’t know how to do this – yet! And I need to learn because I will need to write up my Masters dissertation (and hopefully one day I will be writing up a Phd). I need to get a lot better at writing this style of paper before then. So I need the feedback, and I need the chance to have another try.

So I’m a little nervous around the next one. But I will definitely be approaching it in a different way. Wish me luck!

Written by:

Hi, my name is Dawn Walton and I am a 44 year old therapist that lives in the Dundee area. I'm originally from Anglesey in North Wales, but I've lived here for 17 years. My first degree was in Computing at UMIST in Manchester. Now I'm studying a Masters in Psychological Research Methods with the aim of going on to do a Phd.

I love Starbucks and Pokemon Go. So they are likely to feature in my posts quite often!

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