Semester 2 Week 1 Experience

Semester 2 is well underway now, so I thought I would share my week 1 experience.

This semester, I’ve so far not left my family home! I don’t have any plans to move back to Dundee until the shops reopen, if that happens before this semester ends. I work part-time in retail in Dundee and I’ve been lucky enough to be put on furlough, so I can rely on that in the meantime.

Being at home doing uni work is very strange. I never thought I’d have to do it, and I certainly wasn’t prepared for it when I moved home for Christmas! I thought I’d be heading back to Dundee on New Year’s Day, but here I am, still in County Durham! Therefore, I don’t have all the physical library books I normally have, I don’t have a desk to work at, and I’m not in the environment I’m used to at all. But, I am with my family (and dog!), in a warm home, and I’m more than happy to be here.

So, how has my week 1 experience been? Well, before week 1 even started, I had a virtual meeting with my dissertation supervisor to discuss my topic and some flexible deadlines/targets. This was a really great start to my semester as I had been struggling to figure out how best to structure my days and weeks in order to make significant progress on my dissertation, and that meeting made it all much clearer. It also made me much more excited to get started with it!

Monday of week 1 was very quiet for me. I didn’t have any classes so I just worked on my first mini dissertation deadline which was a source list and chapter overview. Tuesday was much the same, until my first class of the semester at 3pm. Because I’m writing my dissertation this semester, I only have one module, and therefore very few contact hours. 2 hours to be precise. The first of these two hours was very enjoyable! It was pretty much just an introduction to the module and to the lecturers and my classmates. I’m really looking forward to this module though as it’s new and it’s on a topic I’m really interested in!

Wednesday was a very quiet day, mostly spent preparing for my Thursday class and doing some work on my dissertation. Thursday 9am was my second class. I know, 2 contact hours and I’ve still managed to bag a 9am. Despite it dragging me out of bed earlier than I’ve been getting up recently, it was a really interesting class. And, to be honest, I’m glad I’ve got one 9am this semester because otherwise I think my sleep schedule would slip. (Remind me I said that in like 3 weeks time…)

Thursday night was the History Society’s first event of the semester – the Big Fat Quiz of the Year, which we do every year. Obviously 2020 was an absolute shocker of a year so it was a really fun quiz. I’m looking forward to the other events we’ve got planned for this semester! Friday was a very quiet day until 3pm when I had a 2 hour dissertation class taken by some members of library staff. I had already attended the class they did last semester, but felt it would be beneficial going to this one now that I know a lot more clearly what my dissertation will be on. It was really useful and, if nothing else, something to do other than read and write for two more hours of the day!

The weekend was very relaxing. One of my favourite things about being at home at this time is that I force myself not to work on the weekends. When I’m in Dundee, I often end up working over the weekends which can be quite draining, so I’m glad I have the opportunity to force myself not to while I’m at home. However, one of my least favourite things about being at home is not being able to see my boyfriend on the weekends. So weekends are very bitter sweet.

I hope you had a lovely week 1 and enjoy the rest of the semester!

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