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Learning outcomes

By the end of the unit you should be able to:

  • tackle computer-based tasks more confidently;

  • have an awareness of your preferred learning styles.


Author(s): The Open University

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7.3 Drafting essays

As you may remember from Activity 4, the main elements of an essay are:

  • the introduction

  • the main body

  • the conclusion.


Author(s): The Open University

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5.1 Estimating the time for the task

First you need to know how much time you have available for your assignment. The pacing of your studies comes outside the scope of this unit, but it can be very de-motivating when you no longer feel in control of your studies because – for whatever reason – you have fallen behind. So it is extremely important to meet the deadlines set by the course team in your course calendar whenever possible.

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2.2 Developing writing styles

If any of the statements on the previous page rings true, let us reassure you: many other students are feeling the same as you. Writing skills can be learned. We want to emphasise straightaway that this is a process that can be continually developed.

There is no single ‘correct’ way of writing: different academic disciplines demand different styles. This can be confusing if you feel that you've mastered what is required for one course, only to find that something different is
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7.5.2 Title

Being able to understand and use a range of numerical, graphical, algebraic and other mathematical techniques is a central feature of number skills. Use the following list to help you identify the areas you may need to work on. Will you need to:

  • make observations, measurements, and express and combine the units of measurement correctly?

  • read and interpret scale drawings, graphs, tables and charts? If so, do you need to learn about the
    Author(s): The Open University

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6.6 Evaluating strategy and presenting outcomes

This stage of the framework focuses on identifying what you have achieved and how well you have achieved it. It involves you in evaluating your overall strategy and presenting the outcomes of your work. As you evaluate and assess your strategy, identify aspects of your IL skills that you want to develop further. At the end of this section use the records in your Skills File to complete the activity ‘Evaluating your use of IL strategy and presenting outcomes’ and pull together this final s
Author(s): The Open University

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5.6 Evaluating strategy and presenting outcomes

Activity: Evaluating your IT strategy and presenting outcomes

For this activity you will need to print out the Skills Sheet, ‘Evaluating your strategy and presenting outcomes’: click 'View document' to open it.

Author(s): The Open University

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5.2.2 Identify the outcomes you hope to achieve

An outcome is the result or consequence of a process. For example, you may want to integrate information resulting from CD-Rom and Internet searches into a report, and to do this you may need to improve your word-processing skills. In this case your report is an outcome, and using your IT skills is part of the process by which you achieve that outcome.

Try to express the outcomes you hope to achieve as clearly and accurately as possible, asking others for help and comments if necessary.
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4.1a Working on the key skill of communication

A main aim of this key skill is for you to communicate effectively – orally, visually and in writing. For communication to be effective it must be managed. This involves consciously adapting your skills for different situations by selecting the appropriate method of communication for the work. Using the three-stage key skills framework will to help you become more confident in:

  • developing a strategy for using oral, visual and written forms of commun
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3.2.2 Identify what you hope to achieve and opportunities to work on this key skill

It is always a good idea to know what you hope to achieve in the future in terms of your learning, personal or career goals. This might be very specific, for example to improve your report writing, or it might be more general, such as, to ask for and use feedback more effectively. If you are using this in a work context, you may wish to include personal and career goals.

This year I have set myself the goal of using
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1.3 About this unit

This unit is for anyone studying in higher education, such as an Open University course, following a programme of studies leading to a qualification such as a diploma or a degree, or working more generally on their own career and professional development within, or external to, the workplace. You can use the unit at any stage during your learning career whenever you want to improve or update your skills. If you are returning to study, you may find it particularly helpful to use this unit at t
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Learning outcomes

Having studied this unit you should be able to:

  • develop a strategy for using skills in Working with others over an extended period of time;

  • monitor your progress and adapt your strategy as necessary, to achieve the quality of outcomes required when working with others;

  • evaluate your overall strategy and present the outcomes from your work using a variety of methods.


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7.3 Monitoring your progress

Use your records or logbook to help you provide a reflective commentary on:

  • what you did to help you set up and use IT methods and techniques to achieve your goals; for example, what you did to:

     

    • search for information and explore alternative lines of enquiry;

    • exchange information to meet your purpose (e.g. email, computer conferencing, video conferencing, web pages, document sharing
      Author(s): The Open University

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Introduction

This key skill focuses on the ways in which you receive and respond to information and communicate with other people in your work, study and everyday life. Communication skills include speaking, listening, reading and writing for different purposes. Techniques such as note taking and writing summaries are important, but so, too, are the techniques of evaluation and application, such as evaluating the relevance and quality of information.

Communication is part of everyone's life and impr
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1.1.1 Operating the Windows calculator

The Windows calculator is supplied with the Windows operating system. This section provides you with basic instructions for its use, and a few practice activities. The Windows calculator also provides a help menu that you can use.


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5.1.2 When are bar charts used?

A bar chart is a good method of representation if you want to illustrate a set of data in a way that is as easy to understand as it is simple to read. In general, a bar chart should be used for data that can be counted so, for example, we could use a bar chart to show the number of families with 0, 1, 2 or more children. A bar chart could also be used to show how many people in one area use each of the different modes of transport to get to work.

Bar charts are very useful for comparing
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6.3 Referencing

Once you start using the web for study and research, you'll see how convenient it is to find information that you can use for course notes, essays or reports.

One of the most important of all your study skills is the ability to summarise information from other sources in your own words.

Whenever you make use of any information that has been created by someone else, the author and the source must be clearly identified and acknowledged through the use of proper referencing. Providin
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2.6 Back it up

It's a good idea to get into the habit of regularly backing up your work files – things like your notes and assignments. This involves making a copy onto another storage device such as a floppy disk, CD-ROM or memory stick. If anything goes wrong with the hard disk on your computer and you lose all your data, it's some compensation to find that you have a recent copy of your files.

To avoid losing important system files that run your computer, back them up using a data storage system
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3.1.4 Option 4: Challenging and adapting diagrams

In this option, we take a diagram from the source material and either adapt it or challenge what it is trying to tell the reader. This is fine and indicates a thinking approach to the assignment. There is one golden rule: ‘State clearly that this is what you are doing!’ This is important for two reasons: first, the courtesy of acknowledging your sources, even if you have significantly adapted the diagram, and second, to demonstrate that you have studied the material carefully and produced
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5.1.5 English Language

McArthur, T. (ed.) (1992) The Oxford Companion to the English Language, Oxford, Oxford University Press.


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