Monday, 8 March 2010

Reviewing my first week

I'm reviewing my first week as Arcadia Fellow and the experiences I have been fortunate to have had. I have been made very welcomed by all the staff at the University Library and also the college (Wolfson) I am associate with.

I spent the first few days, settling in, meeting people, sorting out my IT set up and just taking the time to familiarise myself with the University Library. Despite, being luck enough to have my own office, which I share with the other current Arcadia Fellow Harriet Truscott, I have been fascinated by the unique architecture of the Library and the history and tradition it represents. I feel honoured to have the opportunity to research here and have been finding lots of interesting and inspiring places to work around the library making me feel very scholarly. I strongly think the place where you work or study can really have a very remarked impact on you and your ideas.

This week I have planned a research timeline and fleshed out the finer details of my methodology. It is a relatively short research project so progress has had to be swift. I have also started my first research objective and started compiling a database of online opportunities for researchers, particularly referencing tools. I have found the thread on managing literatue on Graduate Junction most interesting. Thanks to all those that have contributed.

This week I also had the opportunity to meet with a former Arcadia Fellow Liz Edward-Waller whose IRIS(Induction, Research and Information Skills) Project report I have found a very interesting read. Listening to her experiences has also been really helpful, especially when planning finer details and practicalities. Sharing little tips learned from your peers' research experience is always so incredibly valuable, especially when the timeline of this particular project leaves little room for the unexpected. For example, little things like remembering to look for and un-tick a particular box when constructing a survey to ensure users of university computers aren't restricted by one survey for one IP address.

This week I also enjoyed attending my first Arcadia Seminar by Professor Martin Weller from the Open University about “the pedagogy of abundance – new teaching models in a digital age” as well as attending a researcher-led Thesis Writing Group. Briefly , I was interested that Martin drew parallels from the lessons learnt through the transformation of the music industry in the digital era. The role and place of higher education institutes is definitely changing, particularly as a result of the increased open educational resources (OERs) available, but exactly how HEIs will adapt is still an area of much debate. I will write more on both these events another time as they really deserves their own dedicated post and discussions.

My aim now I have settled in is to keep a more regular account of the daily experiences of my project on the esther @ arcadia blog I have set up on Graduate Junction. I see the esther @ arcadia space as my 'research diary/log' and people are welcome to follow and comment on either blog. You can also follow me on twitter @arcadiaesther.

So I start this second week with much excitment.........

No comments: