4.9 When there's too much to do

This can be a real problem in large conferences. If, for whatever reason, you join a conference later than the other participants, or are unable to be involved for a while, the prospect of joining in can be a bit daunting. There will be lots of messages you haven't read and you may feel that everyone else knows each other.

The main thing to remember is that everyone will be pleased to ‘see’ you when you do join in, and will be helpful and supportive. Here are some strategies you can
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3.3 Real time chat

Online chat is a means of having a quick written conversation with one or more people who are online at the same time. Compared with email, there's less of a time lag in waiting for a response. Messages are likely to be more spontaneous, and it can be anarchic when several people reply at once.


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2.3 Learning more

Consider your main use for the PC, and check that you have the skills or knowledge you need. Although some students use spreadsheets and databases, the key skills for most students are:

  • word processing study notes and assignments;

  • searching for information on the web;

  • using conferencing and email.

If you feel you need to know more about using your computer there are a number of options open to you.
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1.1 Ways in which computers can help you to study

Courses use computers for a variety of different reasons. These are a few examples.

  • To let you explore ideas and concepts in more depth, such as by using a multimedia CD-ROM or DVD with interactive exercises.

  • To help you communicate with others on your course. Online conferences offer a way to contact other students and staff for information, discussion and mutual support.

  • To allow you to analyse data, see pictures or
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2.2.4 Reading graphs and charts: extracting information

When you are sure that you know what a chart or graph is all about, start to look for any main trends. Jot down for yourself a few conclusions that you think can be drawn. It often takes a little time before you can interpret the chart or graph properly. It is worth the effort, however, because information held in the form of a graph is highly patterned; and as our memories work by finding patterns in information and storing them, the information in graphs is easier to remember than informati
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2.1 Analysing text

Some people find it easy to use diagrams in their studies. But I realise that there are others who don't take to diagrams at all enthusiastically. If this is how you feel, please read what follows, as I am convinced that everyone can get something from using diagrams to help their thinking. However, if after working through these sections, you still believe that diagramming as an aid to studying is ‘not for you’, then don't force yourself into an approach that doesn't suit y
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5.1.4 History

There is no general dictionary or companion to the study of history as such. However, there are period and subject-specific companions and indexes, such as:

Jones, C. (1990) The Longman Companion to the French Revolution, London, Longman.

Consult those appropriate to your course.


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3.7.1 Technical considerations

Handwriting

Nowadays most people use a word processing package to write essays while some people may use a typewriter. However, if you don't have access to either of these you will need to hand-write your essay. Should this be the case, the ease of reading depends on the quality of your handwriting . It is only fair to your tutor to try to make your writing as legible as possible. This will take time and care. But when you have spent a long time putting an essay togeth
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2.6.2 Hansa's essay

Hansa's essay would get a higher grade than Philip's. But, like his, it has both strong and weak points.

Strengths

  • subtle understanding of Ellis's argument

  • excellent focus on the question in the title

  • generally sound structure

  • some very fluent writing in places

  • plenty of attack in the opening – pacey first paragraph

  • good sense of how to draw a conclus
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2.5.6 Essay presentation

Both Philip and Hansa presented their essays neatly, with no crossings out or obvious slips of the pen or type. And they make very few spelling mistakes. Philip puts ‘wifes’ for wives, ‘citys’ for cities and ‘carreer’ for career, and Hansa ‘sparcity’ for sparsity.

Spelling

People of
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2.5.5 Writing style

As we have seen, Hansa tends to use whole clusters of words and constructions that are a bit over-formal rather than wrong. She seems to be trying to impress her reader. For example:

They therefore fled from the country in order to escape the restrictions and consequent boredom placed upon them by the very limited pastimes that a high ranking women in the eighteenth century was permitted to indulge.


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2.5.2 Punctuation

Some of the sentences we have looked at are harder to understand than they might be because they are not very well punctuated. Punctuation marks are the ‘stops’ in a sentence that divide it up into parts. They make it easier to follow the meaning of the words. For instance, it is easier to read this sentence of Philip's if we put a comma after ‘wealthy’:

With society becoming more wealthy, it was possible for t
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2.5.1 Sentences

We can see that Philip knows what a sentence is because he writes some perfectly good ones. For example:

In many ways going into urban life from the countryside was beneficial to woman of the upperclass.

This sentence begins with a capital letter and ends with a full stop. It has a subject (urban life) and a main verb (was). As any sentence is, it is a self-contained ‘unit of meaning’. It m
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2.5 Other aspects of writing

Now we will look at the way Philip and Hansa wrote and presented their essays. Did you find them both easy to read? As regards Philip's, my answer is, ‘yes and no’. It is sometimes easy because he has a fluent way with words. But it is often difficult because he does not use enough punctuation to help us make sense of his words, and because of certain mistakes he makes. I found Hansa's essay easier to read. Her writing is more technically correct and more assured than Philip's. But
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References

Ashworth, P. (2003) ‘An approach to phenomenological psychology: the contingencies of the lifeworld’, Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 145–56.
Bordo, S. (1993) Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture and the Body, Berkeley, CA, University of California Press.
Burkitt, I. (1999) Bodies of Thought: Embodiment, Identity and
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3.2 Consciousness of the body

Phenomenological theorists distinguish between the subjective body (as lived and experienced) and the objective body (as observed and scientifically investigated). These are not two different bodies as such (phenomenologists pride themselves on overcoming dualisms!); rather they are different facets of our experience and consciousness.

The body-subject, or subjective body, is the body-as-it-is-lived. I do not simply possess a body; I am my body (Merleau-Ponty, 1962
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4.3 Attending across modalities

The preceding section raised the issue of attention operating (and to some extent failing) across two sensory modalities. By focusing on distraction we ignored the fact that sight and sound (and other senses) often convey mutually supporting information. A classic example is lip-reading. Although few of us would claim any lip-reading skills, it turns out that, particularly in noisy surroundings, we supplement our hearing considerably by watching lip movements. If attention is concerned with u
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3.7.2 Use of computers by deaf or hard of hearing people

In general, people who are deaf or hard of hearing do not require any specific assistive technology in order to use a computer effectively.

  • Deaf people can access visual output and can use a mouse.

  • Hearing aid users may connect their aid to the computer's speakers or an amplifier in order to hear audio output better.

  • Severely deaf people may change the computer's settings so that it provides alternatives to audio aler
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3 What does the data tell us?

Data never gives you the answers: it helps you to ask the questions.

(Hawker, 1998)

Realistically, what governors can glean from attainment data, without assistance from the professionals, either in school or through the Local Authority (LA), may be limited, depending on your experience of reading statistical information.

A single set of figures, relating to only one year's results, may n
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1.3. Moving forward

Language is constantly changing: words come and go and human history is caught like a fly in amber in words we use without thinking every day. By developing in our students the awareness of links, cognates, changes in meaning, oddities of spelling and sound, we enrich not just their mother tongue and foreign languages but their knowledge of global history of the last two thousand years.

The state
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