Starting the T191- Course, asked me to prepare a timetable which can be seen in the Activity Sheet1 Appendix C Page 1. Planning as a professional Engineer is a must thus I understand that in order to progress my career I need to make a plan. Looking at my lifeline in Appendix C Page3, everyone has his ups and downs in life. Reflecting on these Ups and downs one can see better where he is and his abilities in life. From this reflection I constructed a CV which shows better my abilities, my skills and my performance at work. (Appendix D). Currently I am working as a building Management System Technician with one of the most prominent companies in Malta. In my everyday work I have several problems and questions, some of them can be seen in Appendix C Page2. Whenever I have problems I have some resources that help me analyze my problems and get a solution for a positive result. Although in the past I had problems that took me very long to solve, I always managed to achieve my goal some way or another. There are several methods to achieve your goal. Everyone has his own methods of learning. I completed the Learning Styles questionnaire and I have learned more about my abilities to work (Appendix C Page6 Activity Sheet6). Taking an example of my learning skills, in learning a new computer application (Appendix C Page 7 Activity Sheet 7) Reading and plan how to tackle my tasks shows my reflective aspect. I prefer to think about problems and new information before acting, which in my case is 5 on the reflective in the questionnaire. Planning before acting makes my sensing aspect good. I am little intuitive and I prefer to read and know what I am doing before experimenting. In the questionnaire I am 7 on the sensing side. My visual aspect can be seen when I will look for any diagrams and pictures that will help me. Although my preferred aspect is visual, sometimes verbal aspect is more common and more detailed. Looking in my results in the questionnaire, I am 7 on the visual aspect I am more sequential because I prefer to understand new information in steps and not try to learn in large jumps without knowing the whole concept. I admit that sometimes due to anxiousness one can be global without realizing. In the exercise above I am 3 on the sequential side. In my career I had also bad experiences, one of which is explained in Activity Sheet 8 (Appendix C Page 9). This was when I tried to repair a faulty hard drive. Reflecting on the failure made me understand better what went wrong. As I failed to achieve my understanding of failure, I went to theorizing, which gave me possible answers for my experience. Now that I have more knowledge on this experience I can experiment again in the future, and be more confident that such failures will not happen. More on this failure analysis can be shown on Activity Sheet 9 Appendix C Page 10. I also learned from failures done around the world. In Activity Sheet10 I have listed .The failure on China Airlines Flight 611 which resulted in a disaster where 225 people lost their lives. My investigation and analysis made me learn the main points that can cause failure in engineering which are; human factors, design flaws, material failures, extreme conditions or environment, and most commonly combination of several of the reasons. My learning and conclusions on this particular accident can be seen in Activity Sheet 10 Appendix C Page 11. Taking another example on Activity Sheet 11 Appendix C Page 12, I can see better that my learning styles has improved looking at the way I am trying to tackle the problem. I have a very strong and persisting character, which helps me when I find difficulties. My sensing skill will help me to plan work before starting the job. It is of no use trying to experiment before having basic knowledge and equipment to communicate. I need to make some intense research in order to achieve my goal. My sequential skill is also an asset, since I need to understand every step before acting. To conclude on the learning outcomes I have met so far, I have learned that in learning preferences there are no right or wrong, everyone has his own ways of learning and acting. I learned more about my own preferences in learning, thus I can understand my own strengths better. Also, my failures made me learn where my weakness is, and learning how to overcome this weakness made me more professional in my career.
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A skill is the ability that helps you to finish a certain job professionally and up to standards. Everyone has different skills. In order to analyze my skills I am going to look back at my life line in Activity Sheet 3 Appendix C Page 3. I will look into more detail into my skills that I have used when refurbishing my house. Looking at Activity Sheet 12 Appendix C Page 13, my skills that I pointed out were the following. Negotiating and Decision Making Skills were used to make the correct agreement with the contactors that were going to work. I also considered good Supervision of work as ability and a skill to successfully perform the job. I also listed problems solving skills in my case. As all jobs and works, problems will be encountered and the ability of solving these problems is very important. Looking at the problems I had, I can highlight that in order to solve a problem first of all the problem must defined. Referring back to Activity Sheet 12, I had the Sewage leak. The problem was defined that it was not normal water but sewage, and an alternative was generated. Evaluation other alternatives is very important to carry out a job. In my case back to Activity Sheet 12, I made a hole with a submersible pump to temporary solve the problem and other solutions were implemented to permanently solve the issue (color was drained from neighbors to trace the leak) As the leak was found I was convinced that my problem solving ability was correct and valid. Another skill that was noted is the ability to work with others. Cooperation with contractors was noted continuously, and the positive results at the end showed that the skill of working with others was also valid. Besides this example of refurbishing my house, I also listed more examples and analysis on Activity Sheet 13 Appendix C page 14. I will look at the first two examples where I used communications skills in order to achieve problem solving skills. In the first example "Finishing a project in time" I applied my skills to simplify work communicated with workers to work more efficiently and convinced them to make some overtime. I analyzed the problems to ensure the same problems will not repeat. In the second example "Cooperating and Coordination with new workers" I had to use my skills and analyze their abilities in order to give the appropriate job for them. Further examples of problem solving can be seen when I changed a new speed drive that was damaged and when I tried to recover data from an old PC in the same Activity Sheet 13. From these examples I have learned that there are complex and simple problem solving skills. In order to use problem solving skills I need to first identify the problem, analyze the problem and gather relevant information. As relevant information is available I need to generate potential solutions and test the once I think that are most valid. After all this I need to analyze again and evaluate the results. To look at communication skills I took the example of the manager in a production line, which is shown in Activity Sheet 14 Appendix C Page 15. The manager has to use several communications skills such as Interpersonal Skills (working with others), problem solving skills, communication skills, numerical skills and personal skills. As I made myself in the position of the manager I could understand better communication skills. I realized that in order to give information to people I must give this information clearly and simple, in a way that things are understood and as a result work will be done successfully. I think that everything is about transmitting and receiving information clearly. This means that that if I can understand instructions, learn new things, pass information and ask questions, I am able to use communication skills successfully. An occasion in my life when I used communication skills was when I was working at the University IT building project, which can be seen in detail in Activity Sheet 15 Appendix C Page 16. Different communication skills from simple to complex can be seen in this example. Technology is continuously changing and one had to keep updated in order to cope with this. Looking at the examples at Activity Sheet 16 Appendix C Page 17, one can see equipment that was not yet invented 40 years ago. By looking at these examples, I can conclude clearly the need of continuous study and reading of new technologies. Engineering is a lively sector and as equipment, machinery, and technology keep updating, a professional engineer must keep in line with this change and keep updating his knowledge. As a professional engineer I must think of how I can improve my learning and performance. I think that this skill is more difficult and complex than the rest because it is difficult to access and achieve and there is no way to avoid it. Another skill that is important for every job is teamwork, or the ability to work with others. Some activities where I was involved in teamwork and had to work with others to achieve my goal can be seen in Activity Sheet 17 Appendix C Page 19. In these examples, I included different persons with different skills and of different age. My conclusions are that in order to work with others, one requires practical and personal skills. An advantage of teamwork and working with others is that you can benefit and learn from skills other have. It is very important that I can give evidence of my abilities. Looking into Wikipedia Encyclopedia "Evidence in its broadest sense includes everything that is used to determine or demonstrate the truth of an assertion." Having evidence of my skills, I will have the truth of my abilities. In Activity Sheet 18 Appendix C Page 21, I reflected on some everyday situations and gathered evidence to ensure that my skills are valid .In every project or piece of work that is done I can see that there are both hindering and helping forces. I gave some of these forces in Activity Sheet 19 Appendix C Page22. I learned that as you can choose from situations and attitudes, positive and negative factors, in both helping and hindering situations, I can use my skills to overcome my hindering forces and increase my helping forced, to be professional in my career. As I look back at my life, I could see many changes that happed, few of them were changes that I made for a better life, while there were also changes that I was forced to do. I can describe every change in my life with feelings. Some of my feelings can be seen in Activity Sheet 20 Appendix C Page24. From this activity sheet I learned that I must be aware of changes and feelings in life. Being well prepared for changes makes you respond for these changes better, which is important for a professional engineer to manage and work in any circumstance.
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As I look again around me I can see better the support I am having from people around me. No man is an island, and no one can work by his own. In activity Sheet 21 I have listed some people that are of good strength for my career. These people make me know better who I am and where I am going. Knowing my skills, knowing my problems and knowing, who can help me, makes me confident in both my career and even my life.