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1 Welcome to Postgraduate Study at the Caulfield School of Information Technology, Faculty of Information Technology

2 2 Overview Transitional issues and strategies Learning skills and the Faculty’s ‘Keys to Success’ program Making your life easier by managing your time effectively

3 3 Transition—Transitional Issues Language barriers Educational background –Different educational systems –Non-business/management background –Non-technical background Culture Undergraduate Postgraduate

4 4 Transition Strategies Socialise –preferably with wide variety of people from different backgrounds Always prepare for the ‘unexpected’ Ask, if you are uncertain –Fellow students, admin staff, lecturers, course directors Get help, eg –Course director, lecturers, admin staff –Support services and facilities >eg accommodation, child care, counselling, disability services, financial assistance, health and medical services, sports and recreation, student associations –Learning skills and study assistance > >Language & Learning Online –Monash Postgraduate Association (MPA)

5 5 Keys to Success Program A program specifically devised to assist new PG students with such transition issues –For new-to-course, masters by coursework, IT students –Draws on Library and Learning Services staff –Introduction in the Orientation Program today –8 follow-up sessions to be run throughout the semester cover: >Library research skills; academic writing; assignment writing; report writing; effective group work; making oral presentations; and two sessions on exam preparation (later in the semester) >Certificate of Participation for those who attend all sessions You are strongly encouraged to attend –Very helpful orientation to Monash PG course expectations –Helps develop study skills and improves performance on assignments

6 6 Keys to Success Program Need to book in to particular sessions MUSO/ ‘Blackboard’ site for this program, accessible to you from your ‘my.Monash’ portal –A useful source/ repository for related learning materials More details will be given later this morning.

7 7 Effective Time Management—the Key to Surviving—and Thriving on the Course Time as a resource – We make time for things that are really important to us. Key principles of effective personal time management (1)'Work smarter, not harder' –Elapsed time vs productive time –The 80/20 Law/Law of Diminishing Returns –Effective personal time management reduces the time you need to spend on tasks, narrowing the gap between elapsed time and productive time. –Effectiveness vs efficiency

8 8 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 100 Mark Gained 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Productive Hours Spent on Task 80/20 Law as Applied to Time Management on the Course

9 9 Managing Your Time Effectively (2)Recognise your productive hours –Individual biorhythms –Tackle tasks requiring concentration or creativity when you are most alert, and routine tasks when you feel less alert (3)Avoid perfectionism –The lesson of the 80/20 Law –Trade-off between time put in to a project, and quality/level of performance/results we achieve –In employment, tight work schedules do not allow perfectionism (4)Overcome procrastination –A problem that besets most of us –Deliberately or unconsciously, leaving a task to the last possible moment  self-induced urgency and high associated levels of personal stress

10 10 Managing Your Time Effectively (5)Try to avoid unnecessary chopping and changing –Can be a great time waster – When we leave something unfinished and come back to it days later, it takes considerable time to re- orient ourselves with the task. (6)Try to avoid unnecessary multiple handling of documents, and a cluttered desk or Inbox –Filing when you first read/ deal with a document/email –An effective filing system

11 11 Managing Your Time Effectively (7)Set objectives and assign priorities –Prioritise the important areas of your life –Aim at a balanced, healthy lifestyle –Spend most time on what is important to you, rather than on the trivial/ unimportant. –It can be a good idea to keep a diary of how you are currently spending your time, and then analyse the data you collect. Rank activities according to time spent, and then compare this data with your personal objectives and priorities. Identify major timewasters and sources of interruption –Insights from this exercise helps in developing a personal time management plan

12 12 Managing Your Time Effectively (8) Develop a personal time management plan –Identify objectives and tasks for the planning period (eg coming week), and rank them in order of importance –Break down large tasks into component parts and list them separately –Allocate tasks to particular days and assign notional times –Tackle highest priority tasks when you are freshest –Make effective use of ‘small chunks’ of time to tackle the more routine tasks

13 13 Managing Your Time Effectively (9) Don't be afraid to say 'no' (10) Delegate wherever possible (11) Use the ‘small chunks’ of time effectively –eg reading on public transport (13) Arrange your work environment to enhance productivity –Devise simple, effective filing systems (15) Use a daily diary (16) Analyse who/what causes interruptions (17) Develop effective reading skills

14 14 Planning Your Study Time Work out likely time required for each assignment (according to relative weighting), eg –Major essay (30%-35%) ~ 4-5 weeks >Understand / select topic >Analyse requirements >Start focused search for materials >Write (may be in ‘bits’, then join together) >Detailed edit (try reading it out loud!) >Leave for 2-3 days (1 week is better) >Re-read, re-edit –Minor critique (7.5%) ~ 5-6 hours

15 15 Planning Your Study Time Start early –Work backwards from end of semester Stick to your plan Socialising becomes reward for meeting deadlines Most importantly, enjoy your course!

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