I was meant to be doing DD101 this year but I had to withdraw when my mother was very ill. She’s doing a lot better now so I’ve been reviewing my options and have decided to return to study now with Y157. My aspirations have changed somewhat from my starting point so I’m taking this opportunity to write down where I am now.
I returned to study originally because I wanted to qualify as a Pet Behaviour Counsellor. At the moment, this seems like too big a goal and I’m not convinced it’s what I really want although that may be a whine (‘It’s too hard, mummy’) rather than a real change to my plans. I’m also baulking at having to do a BSc first since that’s not where my interests currently lie and am worried about the statistics and research phases of my original plan. Maths and I don’t get along. So, for now, I’m pulling in my horns a bit and am studying for personal achievement rather than seeing it as a career opportunity.
I enjoyed the work I did on DD101 before my mother became ill and am thinking about re-registering for it in October (which is the earliest I can get funding). In the meantime, Y157 is an opportunity to work at a slightly lower academic level (it’s classified by the OU as an ‘Openings’ course and would probably come under the ‘Access’ programme of a bricks’n’mortar University) while working on study stills like time management, maintaining motivation, dealing with stress, etc. These are all areas where I have problems and am still looking for solutions.
There’s an added push to complete this course as, if I don’t, I’ll require special permission from the OU to register for another so not completing just because isn’t an option for this one. I’m assured that the University would look fairly kindly on someone who did not complete for good reasons but, as I already have a somewhat spotted academic career I’d rather not be in this position.
I’m feeling positive about my decision to study Y157 and am planning to start today. My materials should come from the OU fairly soon (they’re usually sent out about a month before the official start date) and the first two blocks are freely available at OpenLearn. I made a ‘proper’ work-schedule yesterday – this is the first time I’ve made one – and am surprised at what’s actually achievable as opposed to my usual flights of fancy (‘Yes, I’ll work 8 hours a day and have it all finished by Saturday!’)
Y157 takes between 8 and 20 weeks to complete (the deadlines are by negotiation with one’s tutor rather than set in stone). My main goals are:
- Complete the course.
- Make and stick to a schedule.
- Review progress regularly.