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After a long summer of fun and unemployment, it was finally time to get back to the real world. No more endless free time, it was time to get my brain working for something productive. I enrolled in a bachelor in software development, I was always fascinated by computers and being able to modifying it was always a dream for me. And what a surprise it was for me when I saw in my time table that I had a course called Academic Skills for Business, what is it? I'm going to be software developer, why do I need it? After attending two lectures, I began taking interest in it, it made me see thing that I never thought of before. And then the assignment dropped. 2Â 500 Word, I don't even know if I carry that much vocabulary, but I saw it as a challenge. It will help me develop my writing skills and language, and it's a great ways to analyze my progress through this course, maybe if I have some free time I will do it for my other courses.
First chapter of the course, that describes the skills that employers look for In General and what skills we gain as a student. From what I understood there are five skills that are needed to be employed in a high level of responsibility job: Communication, human relations, work survival, leadership and research and planning. A good manager needs to acquire good relations with his subordinate, in order to motivate them; he should be able to take good initiative after analysing all the resource available and fight for his ideas to survive in the organisation.
I already had a general idea of what employer where looking for but I was neglecting the human relation aspect, however it turns out to be the most important one. In order to get to the top ladder of an organisation, I need to work out my communication skill, which means getting the appropriate feedback, negotiating, perceiving nonverbal messages, interviewing.... And to enforce my work survival by initiating new ideas, meeting goals and accepting responsibility. In order to fulfil my desire of success, I need to make changes in my life, and that's what distinguishes an adult form a teenager, the ability to make changes in your behaviours to adapt to the requirement of the society. The road to rich can't be made without compromises, if it isn't then the success won't be as tasty as if I had put effort and made sacrifice for it. Thankfully some of these skills will be developed thanks to high school.
High school allow student to reinforce some technical skills that can be transferred to work. The most important one is the ability to meet deadlines, and i know what I'm talking about, been one of the laziest person in the word, I had to catch up or I will be left alone, and planning was the solution to my laziness and lack of organisation ( I will go more in depth in the according section). It allows to develop writing skills with assignments like this one or the communication aspect, answer are more structured and feedback more centred to the subject. It also allow to work in a team, get a touch of the dynamic of a group, get of feel of group brainstorming and it's draw backs.
Here comes my black beast, hell for a lazy person like me. I always tried to manage my time but without success, I tried post-it, dairy, phone application but I always fail. Never used a method more than three consecutive day, I always give up so quickly, always postponing what I had to the day before for the next day, it's just a mean cycle. But now things are more serious, the British system gives away to students a lot of time away from class but they assume that we are responsible enough to manage ours time wisely. But the draw backs for lazy students like me are huge, it's an automatic fail if there is no adaptation to the system. So here is my challenge for this year: managing my time as wisely as possible. And thanks to this assignment, I realize that I have failed again, here I am 3 days before the dead line and I only wrote 1/3 of the essay earlier this day, counting each word and realizing how I could have done this work before with a simple planning. I was there when the slides of this chapter were projected; I can still remember all advises that our teachers gave to us like setting goals, prioritizing assignments, make a weekly planning. Great ideas, I was even advising other students with the same strategies but I didn't apply it for myself, which is completely useless.
Now here I am, facing my responsibility once again. This time I have to make BIG changes in my behavior, this nonchalance can't be supported anymore or It will automatically lead me to failure and that's not an option I was planning for my future. Starting from today, I will not use only one method for managing my time, but I will use all of them, I will try by any mean to keep a daily list of what have to do and plan for what I should do all the week that follow. "Actions are the seed of fate deeds grow into destiny." Â Harry S Truman. It's time to man up, all successful people achieved their dream by setting goal and fighting as much as possible to achieve them and even to go beyond , they put all their energy into it, and they are human being just like us. Mea culpa but here come the power of the human being, the ability to learn from their mistake and to adapt accordingly. When I first read the assignment I thought it was just another paper work but it reveal that I had more writing skill as I thought I had and looking back at what I did from the beginning of the semester made me realize that I evolved somehow , gain some maturity and with an anger of success and motivation.
Creativity skills brainstorming
Next lesson was creativity skills brainstorming, before attending this class I already had a good idea about it. But after couple of slides, I realized that my definition of brainstorming was vague compared to the one projected on the screen. This new definition distinguished brainstorming in too types: Individual Brainstorming and Group brainstorming. I always thought that brainstorming was a group activity, but I actually disagree in this statement -"When you brainstorm on your own you will tend to produce a wider range of ideas than with group brainstorming" (slides from chapter 3)-, when brainstorming is done lonely, it create a tighter range. First not having an external point of view narrow the ideas that could have emerged during a session, an external analysis create a judgment of an idea and opens the door to new opportunity that couldn't be founded lonely; however by brainstorming individually you can get more specific detail and draw a good image of the situation. -
"Creative thinking is not a talent; it is a skill that can be learnt. It empowers people by adding strength to their natural abilities which improves teamwork, productivity and where appropriate profits."(Edward de Bono) -
Brainstorming reinforce team work, dealing whit other schoolmates, we worked on a presentation about internet security and privacy for this course. It was an amazing experience; we applied the Simplex process after finding our subject. We began our first brainstorming session by finding the problem using trigger question like: what informational resources are we going to use? On what should we focus our research? How are we going to divide the tasks? How can we do a good presentation? The next meeting, after gathering as much relevant information as possible, we shared our result to let everyone aware of the content of the presentation, the main idea was to make a team work and not to just let everyone work on his own or it will create an heterogenic presentation. And we arise more questions about the planning and preparing the framework of our slides. The next time we met, we finalized the slides of our presentation and started preparing to face the audience. Hopefully no problem occurred between the group and a nice atmosphere was created, I allowed us to get more familiar with each other and a better understanding of other's point of view and way of thinking. Finally when the day of the presentation came, it was time for action, some of us were a little bit frighten and anxious but it all collapsed when the show began. It all went smoothly, we were mastering our research and audience, most of them weren't aware of the content we were exposing, so we kept their attention for the whole hour. I really enjoyed this experience and I'm ready to do as much possible team work using a structured method like the simplex process.
Decision tree and Statistics
A decision tree is a tree in which each branch node represents a choice between a number of alternatives, and each leaf node represents a classification or decision. In decision analysis, a decision tree can be used to visually and explicitly represent decisions and decision making. In data mining, a decision tree describes data but not decisions; rather the resulting classification tree can be an input for decision making. This page deals with decision trees in data mining. Data mining approaches to my course name database analysis and design, I read a book about it and found it really interesting because it deals with economic situation and that rimes with money. I was planning on continuing my studies threw the database analysis area and I will be dealing with decision tree a lot, so having a first look of it in my first years of college get me a quick touch to it.For example, we might have a decision tree to help a financial institution decide whether a person should be offered a loan:
Expected monetary value is a value based on probability that factors in all possible monetary outcomes of a given situation. The value is reached by multiplying the percentage of each possibility occurring by the monetary loss or gain associated with that outcome. At that point all of those values, positive and negative, are combined to reach the expected monetary value. This calculation is a valuable tool for those tasked with making a decision involving several possible outcomes, as it represents the most statistically accurate estimation of the eventual result. In order to calculate the EMV of a situation you should follow these steps:
Define the alternative actions you are choosing from. These are labeled a1-ai.
Define the states of nature which the is variable that will affect the various outcomes of a. These are labeled s1-sj.
Set up a payoff table. List a1-ai as the columns and s1-sj as the rows.
Fill in the values for each a and s option. Each value is the expected payoff for that occurrence (hence the name payoff table).
Determine the probability for each s value.
Find the EMV for each a value. Use the formula EMV(ai) = (s1 X ai) + ... + (sj X ai)
Another notion was introduced: descriptive statistics. Basically it was some new math calculation like the average, the mean, the mode, the median, the range and the interange. Most of these feature have been familiar with me because I did some applied math to economy, however I had a blur vision of the bias until I start overdoing exercises about it at home. Then we continued on measure of variation, introducing the variance, the standard of deviation and variance of uncertainty.
Here we are, after 2 months of courses , I learn a lot threw these course and enjoyed myself attending it, writing this reflective essay really help me put thing into retrospective. My technical ability for the course is more than average and I intend to keep practicing to survival in this "jungle" called university. I found some energy to fight back and overcome this nonchalance that that keep me avoiding important thing and not managing my time wisely. It's time to act now.
Finally, I still have hard time to believe I finally did it, just few words before the gargantuan milestone of 2Â 500 words, never thought I would have finish it in time and having fun doing it. It reveals writing skills that I never tough existed and learning so much about myself during the process. Putting everything on the paper helps you to draw a perfect picture of a period of time which helps you modifying your weakness and evaluating your evolution.
Thank you for the reading; it was a pleasure to write it.