Discuss about the Pathology and Lab Medicine.
Reflecting on the tenure of educational placements helps a learner in gaining meaningful insights into developments made as well as the areas of further improvement pertaining to skills and competencies. In this paper, a reflection is put forward regarding educational placement at the RMIT Univerisity as a part of professional development.
As a student learning core concepts of pathology and laboratory medicines, I value my placement at the RMIT university. I was placed at the pathology laboratory of this Australian public research university located in Melbourne, Victoria. The three essential skills that I developed while working at the concerned laboratory were the preparation of reagents, preparation of tissues for microscopic tests and time management.
While working at the laboratory, I gained valuable knowledge about the preparation of chemical reagents, and this was more prominent as I received a hands-on experience of the same. For instance, my skills in carrying out serial dilution of the solution with the help of simple equation (n1 v1= n2 v2) increased rapidly. In addition, I learnt the process of accurately weighing chemical powder and understood the importance of the same. My expertise in preparation of tissue for microscopic tests also enhanced as I developed the understanding of the significance of tissue handling and processing pertaining to accurate results. The present semester required us to cut tissues, embed them and carry out staining procedure. Previously, it was difficult for me to successfully embed tissues such as skin, which I was able to overcome at the end of the placement. I also got a chance to carry out different staining procedures and understand the application of each. Initially, it was challenging to carry out certain staining procedures such as reticuline staining that requires a clean background to be generated against the tissues. After struggling with this process throughout the placement tenure, I was successful in learning the right technique.
Time management skills is another key arena that I show development in after the placement. By time management one refers to the ability to do planning, management and regulation of time frame spend on a certain activity. This skill is noteworthy since it aids in the reduction of workload through prioritisation of important tasks. I learnt the method of multitasking activities for ensuring that all tasks are accomplished within a certain time frame.
At this juncture, I would also like to highlight the challenges I faced while working at the RMIT laboratory. As a student, it is desirable to carry out extensive research in core field which is enabled by the provision of a computer system. Since RMIT pathology laboratory does not have any such provision, I faced difficulties in carrying out such research work. In addition, I was answerable to the concerned authority for using my personal mobile phone as I was thought to be using it for personal reasons while it was being used for research purpose. I would also like to mention that delegating tasks that were not a part of my duties was not appropriate. The absence of a laboratory assistant implied that we students had to complete their set of responsibilities. Communication and interpersonal concerns also prevailed as I was subjected to disrespect and insolence at times.
Coming to the end of the reflection I would like to conclude that the placement at the RMIT laboratory was a significant one as it gave me chances of bringing in professional as well as personal development. The placement was beneficial for me since I was presented with the opportunity to enhance the core set of skills required for becoming an expert in the field I am studying. The key learnings from the placement would be applied in future for establishing a strong career in my field.
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