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Reflection on the development of academic and professional skill in year one

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Reflection on the development of academic and professional skill in year one
Reflection on the development of academic and professional skill in year one
In this paper I am going to reflect on my professional and academic skills development throughout my first year at University. I began this course as a mature student hungry for education and a fresh challenge. During semester two, I found university quite hard as I am currently having family problems; as a result I had to learn to balance university life, part time job and regular trips back home (and that is Bulgaria).
At these times, in compound business environment and growing competition, to be able to compete on the job market you need to possess outstanding skills and be always a step ahead of others. Being a good learner and constantly developing one’s personality are necessary skills that individual who want to succeed should possess. The foundation of learning process is the learning orientation, which defines his or hers educational realization (Dunn et al., 1977). One of the most common definitions of “learning styles” defines the term as diverse form of behaviour made of cognitive, effective and psychological factors that present the appropriate indicators of the learners’ observation, collaboration and reaction to the learning environment (Curry, 1981).
Completing Neil Fleming’s VARK questionnaire I realised that my preferred learning style is Tactile /Kinaesthetic or also known as the Active Learner Style. I learn best not from explanation or direction; but from doing it. Felder and Silverman (1988, p. 71) described that in the Tactile/Kinaesthetic Learning Style, "Learning comes through touching and physical sensation. Thinking is anchored by movement, and touch, often three-dimensional, and usually all or nothing understanding of concepts. Demonstration or application works better than words to illustrate ideas”. As an active learner I tend to be controlled by impulse, be disorganized, absent-minded and hyperactive, and most of the time I will act first and think



References: Allinson, C., and Hayes, J. (1988), ‘The learning styles questionnaire: an alternative to Kolb’s inventory’, Journal of Management Studies, 25, (3):269-281. Belbin, M. (1981), Management Teams, London, Heinemann.Boud, D., Keogh, R., and Walker, D. (1985), Reflection: Turning experience into learning, London, Kogan Page. Campbell, T. (2010), Professional Skills, Pearson, Harlow.Curry, L. (1981), ‘Learning preferences in continuing medical education’, Canadian Medical Association Journal, 124:535-6. Denison, D. (1990), Corporate Culture and Organizational Effectiveness, New York, Wiley.Dunn, R., Dunn, K. and Prick, J. (1977), ‘Diagnosing learning styles: a prescription for avoiding malpractice suits’, Phi Delta Kappan, 58:418-20. Felder, R.M., and Silverman, L.K. (1988), Learning and teaching styles in engineering education, http://www4.ncsu.edu./unity/lockers/users/f/felder/public/Papers/LS- 1988.pdf[Accessed on 28 April 2014].Hofstede, G.H, Hofstede, G.J and Minkov, M. (2010), Cultures and organizations: software of the mind: international cooperation and its importance for survival, 3rd edn, New York, McGraw-Hill. Kolb, D. (1984), Experiential Learning, Engltwood Cliffs, NJ, Prentice-Hall.Romanelli, F., Bird, E., and Ryan, M. (2009), ‘Learning styles: A review of theory, application, and best practices’, American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education, 73 (1): 1-6.

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