A learning plan adds to working up an unmistakable learning structure. A mix of a learning course of action and reflection can achieve more noticeable headway towards meeting perceived destinations (Merriam, Caffarella & Baumgartner, 2012). This report plans to give a self–evaluation of my learning headway and association in my first session of learning at school. There are four acknowledging needs that are investigated in this report and they are improving my educational writing, referencing, and fundamental instinct capacities and furthermore developing an advanced mindset. These adjusting needs are discussed in association with my goals; systems and resources used; recognized prerequisites and enabling impacts; and an appraisal of results and reflection. This report in like manner consolidates a talk of oral presentations and the academic aptitudes required in my concentration, specifically Language
Academic English writing is a linear exercise having a central theme, and every aspects pointing to the main topic, excluding repetitions and deviations. Its main purpose is to enlighten and not amuse, and remains factual. The piece is composed around the main theme, providing the key data. It is actually a standard on paper form of the language and it ought to be accurate and precise (Bailey, 2014). Academic writing mainly has eight kinds of characteristics, which are discussed below:
Standard writing is relatively more complex and diverse than the language we speak daily. Vocabulary is varied, lexically dense, and words used are longer than usual. Academic writing consists mainly of noun-based phrases rather than verb-based phrases, and the use of subordinate clauses and passives are much more frequent than spoken language. Grammatically also these writings are more complex (Staples et al., 2016).
In the same context as complexity, formality is a crucial characteristic of academic writing. In no case, colloquial expressions or words could be used, thus making the degree of formality in the piece of writing quite high (Sword, 2012).
Academic writing ought to be precise, figurative and factual, as much as possible so that nothing is left out for further interpretation.
Academic writing is supposed to be impersonal and objective, and must focus on the main theme and arguments, instead of the author. It is why these kinds of writings are noun-based instead of being verb-based or adverb-based (Murray, 2013).
Explicitness is an important aspect of academic writing. The script is clear, all the parts of the text refer clearly to the main topic, and signaling words are used to maintain the relation between the parts.
General spoken English is not as accurate as academic writing. In academic writing accurate use of vocabulary is a must, and words used are specific and distinctive (Lan, 2015).
In academic writing, the author has to be responsible for his or her claims, and ready with proper evidence and justification for those. Assumptions are not allowed and proper sources are to be accredited (Goodson, 2016).
Academic writers use hedging, a technique implemented by writers to approach a topic and make strong and justified claims about it. Different topics claim different approaches (Gräßer, 2013).
In this context, my main goals for Academic writing were to write clear, concise paragraphs and convey the meaning accurately. Learning to paraphrase information was an important objective. My strategies to achieve these goals were to study the lectures and tutorials relating to academic writing skills, paraphrase data provided in guides, notes and readings, and then take time to compose a draft assessment. In addition, I aimed to acquaint myself with University levels of academic language and styles. While implementing these strategies I faced constraints like unfamiliarity with University standard academic writing and my inability to present my thoughts into words. However, I received the support of my family members for proofreading, and my time management skills and ease of internet use assisted me further. With help, I improved my academic writing skills and I would aim to keep evolving it throughout my academic career. My academic language usage has improved, which resulted in better marks and feedbacks. My time management skills improved and so has my understanding and conveying of ideas on paper.
Academic integrity is the foundation of anyone’s academic career and is the stepping-stone for professional and individual veracity. Scholars depend on each other to present their work while conducting peer reviewing. High level of honesty ought to be reflected in the work in which the works of others may back some parts. For that, proper acknowledgement via referencing and citations has to be done, keeping in mind to make the work as original as possible (Bretag et al., 2014).
For avoiding plagiarism using direct quotation from the referenced articles, paraphrasing and utilizing the concepts of others is necessary. Using quotation marks, while using exact words or phrases, and providing proper citation is required. Complete attribution has to be provided. To avoid plagiarism, using APA style format, quotation marks for exact words, in-text citation consisting of author’s family name, year of publication and page numbers, and the complete reference aspects of the source used in the reference list at the end of the assignment, must be provided. While paraphrasing, the cited work’s concept and topic has to be analyzed and then developed into words, instead of just changing the words of the text here and there. In this case also citation is necessary. We can reference books, journals, magazines, reports, and websites and so on (Bakhtiyari et al., 2014).
In this context, my main objectives were to be able to recognize any sort of plagiarism, conspiracy and instances of cheating, and being able to accurately reference works using APA 6th edition and to not being accused of plagiarizing. I planned to attend lectures and review tutorials to grasp the meaning of academic integrity, APA style formatting and referencing, while constantly practicing paraphrasing and using direct quotes in assignments. While implementing the strategy I was unaware of plagiarism and citation methods. I gained knowledge from tutorials and study guides. My knowledge of using Turnitin – the text matching software – helped me recognize possible academic transgression. The whole process has helped me learn much about academic integrity, and all my misconceptions were rectified. I learned how to practice integrity and avoid plagiarism. It enabled me to understand other referencing styles too. I learnt paraphrasing and direct quoting, and taking responsibility of my work. My fear of referencing has subsided.
Growth Mindset is the belief of people that their most fundamental capacities could be enhanced through perseverance and hard work, intellect and aptitude being just the origin. This belief produces an inclination for learning and a flexibility that is crucial for great success. Students’ mindset plays a principal role in their inspiration and accomplishment, and developing a student’s mindset can boost their accomplishments. If students go through a planned program, they can improve their knowledge and skills and do better. Having students concentrate on the learning plan can promote their growth mindset and its profits (Dweck, 2007).
Students having a growth mindset experience less negative influence on performance. The growth mindset is helpful in making me feel good while following both long term and short-term objectives. It is helpful in making me thrive in tests and setbacks on my way to learning. Praising efforts helps in feeling encouraged, and pushes to do better. The growth mindset is useful in closing achievement gaps instead of just covering them up (Teague, 2016).
In this context, my main objectives were to achieve the pass marks in the subject and to continue maintaining average performance throughout my academic career. I also aimed to recognize my style of learning, and how I can implement that style in my personal life, as well as the professional one. For accomplishing my objectives, I referred to Dweck’s learning theory of Growth Mindset vs. Fixed Mindset for positive reinforcement. I also reviewed lecture notes, study guides and tutorials to understand the different forms of learning. I aimed to build an elevated self-efficiency through triumphs in assessments. My approaches were met with some constraints like surmounting low self-efficiency resultant from prior defeats and exposure to fixed mindset learning style (Kolb & Kolb, 2005). I overcame these constraints by dedication and commitment towards achieving a growth mindset, and strong time management and organizational skills. Throughout the assignment, I tried to be as diligent as possible with my lessons, attendance, tasks and learning, trying to learn enough and improve through toiling and perseverance. I took the required steps to attain my objectives, putting up short-term goals, taking small steps. I tried to overcome my self-doubt, and strived to gain victory. I still keep track of my tasks and still develop my habits to better my prospects.
I once gave an oral presentation for a previous assignment I had to complete at the University. At the end of the presentation, I was mortified of my performance. It was the first time I was addressing such a huge audience, and the topic was relatively new to me. In addition to that, I suffer from anxiety and fear during any kind of public speaking and I have problems with memorizing. That was one horrible experience for me.
Effective oral presentations are crucial, as they are instant method for communication. They offer better opportunities to comprehend the context and are a way of gaining instant feedback. It is transparent, and provides the audience the chance to judge for themselves. For polishing such a beneficial action, certain strategies must be implemented to deliver better results. For giving a successful oral presentation, the speaker must do proper homework and practice a lot. The structuring should be organized and to-the-point. The speaker must pay attention to looking presentable, and then not just read out a flat presentation. The topic has to be actually “presented”. He has to be tactical, and manage the given time span properly and effectively. In addition a little bit of “comic relief” is acceptable. The speaker must aim to connect with the audience, be relaxed and welcome interactions for crowd engagement. All these, if followed would end up in a effective oral presentation (De Grez, Valcke & Roozen, 2012).
This whole learning plan was chalked out to assist me in following my career goal effectively. I started out with an aim to improve my academic writing skills and knowledge, learn how to provide unplagiarized work, how to properly acknowledge the aids I am receiving from my peers, develop a positive growth mindset and learn how to give an effective oral presentation. I got help from my tutorials and study guides and my professors to build this plan and develop myself into a scholar, having a positive learning style and with a prospect of achieving success in my professional career.
To improve my learning needs, be a successful university student and gain assistance in my career after finishing university I need to improve the skills on which I lack on. I am unfamiliar with academic writing styles and conveying of thoughts in words. For that I need to practice more, and read more. I am unaware about different referencing formats and plagiarism methods. For that, also I need to follow university guides and practice writing. I was unexposed to growth mindset and had a negative outlook on life. Moreover, I had low self-efficiency. For this, I have to maintain a positive outlook on life, read motivational books and articles and look out for support from family members.
Bailey, S. (2014). Academic writing: A handbook for international students. Routledge.
Bakhtiyari, K., Salehi, H., Embi, M. A., Shakiba, M., Zavvari, A., Shahbazi-Moghadam, M., ... & Mohammadjafari, M. (2014). Ethical and unethical methods of plagiarism prevention in academic writing. International Education Studies, 7(7), 52-62.
Bretag, T., Mahmud, S., Wallace, M., Walker, R., McGowan, U., East, J., ... & James, C. (2014). ‘Teach us how to do it properly!’An Australian academic integrity student survey. Studies in Higher Education, 39(7), 1150-1169.
De Grez, L., Valcke, M., & Roozen, I. (2012). How effective are self-and peer assessment of oral presentation skills compared with teachers’ assessments?. Active Learning in Higher Education, 13(2), 129-142.
Dweck, C. S. (2007). The secret to raising smart kids. Scientific American Mind, 18(6), 36-43.
Goodson, P. (2016). Becoming an academic writer: 50 exercises for paced, productive, and powerful writing. Sage Publications.
Gräßer, A. (2013). Hedging in Academic Writing.
Kolb, A. Y., & Kolb, D. A. (2005). Learning styles and learning spaces: Enhancing experiential learning in higher education. Academy of management learning & education, 4(2), 193-212.
Lan, N. T. (2015). The Effect of Task Type on Accuracy and Complexity in IELTS Academic Writing. VNU Journal of Science: Foreign Studies, 31(1).
Merriam, S. B., Caffarella, R. S., & Baumgartner, L. M. (2012). Learning in adulthood: A comprehensive guide. John Wiley & Sons.
Murray, R. (2013). Writing for academic journals. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).
Staples, S., Egbert, J., Biber, D., & Gray, B. (2016). Academic Writing Development at the University Level Phrasal and Clausal Complexity Across Level of Study, Discipline, and Genre. Written Communication, 33(2), 149-183.
Sword, H. (2012). Stylish academic writing. Harvard University Press.
Teague, M. (2016). How can primary school teachers influence a child’s growth mindset in mathematics?. School of Education and Childhood, 1, 41.
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