I am a third-year Biomedical Science student and I am on my way to completing my dissertation. I was never keen on workshops, webinars or any kind of help from the university and I never made any effort to find out what the library and university offers to us students. I have always seen IT labs full of students thinking that there was a class going on, until last week when I realised it was actually the workshops and seminars. Personally, I am that person who cancels a plan last minute, especially when it comes to lectures and workshops – just like all students. However, for this, I made sure I attended the SPSS (Statistics) workshop. After attending the workshop, I realised that attending this was one of the best decisions in my student-life!
Speaking about my course, I knew I would be using a load of data for my experiments and would need statistics to help me through it. When I was booking an appointment for the workshop I realised, for the first time, that our library offers specific workshops and seminars on dissertations, introductions to excel, SPSS, maths and all those things that we students find difficult! When I attended the workshop, I sat down with the tutor and explained what I needed to learn for my dissertation. The examples that the tutor explained were based on every student’s module requirement. So, I can happily say that the workshop is more of a one to one interaction if you need to get specifics to your module or assignment. I now feel confident as I knew it would help me if I am ever stuck with my statistics, data or maths. The tutors in the workshop were very helpful, friendly and made sure I knew the reason for doing certain steps.
These workshops would have been ideal for me in the first two years of my student life, when I was struggling with data handling and referencing. Lack of knowledge about referencing, IT skills, and academic writing, which are all essential in your student life, can lead to a stressful end of semester and deadlines and end up losing you marks. I have personally lost my marks for referencing and write-ups and like most other students, I did not make sure that I got the help and resources I needed to get through the year. But it’s never too late to learn about the resources our university offers, and I am sure the skills which I gained from the workshop will help me for my Masters and PhD.
I always like to be ahead of everyone and know about everything that I do. As a final year student, I would like to say: try and master these skills during your first two years of university so that you don’t have to go back and learn the basics. Times flies by quickly when you are a final year student and you don’t have the time to brush up the skills that you need for your dissertation. The workshops will help us students to feel confident about what we do and add these skills for our personal and academic development. When I walked out of the workshop, I knew I had enough knowledge about statistics to help my fellow students and recommend them to attend the workshop if they ever struggle with the skills that we need to get the marks that we deserve.
Booking an hour workshop might be less motivating than watching an episode on Netflix but is definitely very helpful when it comes to scoring the good marks that we deserve for our assignments. I feel that the workshops are a solution to an academic problem that students face, and you can save a lot of time by already knowing what the Skills for Learning workshops offer. If you know what the upcoming assignment will ask for – you need to keep ahead of the game!
Finally, I would like to say; the skills that you can gain through this workshop will not only help with the academic needs of student life but will also be helpful when we enter the industry as confident graduates. If you be alert and save time it will lead you to a less stressful student life!