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My First Term at UoPeople – Summary

This past weekend I completed both of my final exams for my first term at UoPeople! I can’t believe how fast 9 weeks flew by! Today I’d like to recap on my experiences.

My first impressions.

When I first got accepted to UoPeople, I have to admit that I was a bit nervous. I’ve managed to keep my brain pretty sharp since leaving high school through self education which has included learning how to program, studying sound engineering, and reading books about business, astronomy, physics, and other sciences. Despite this, it had still been a long time since I participated in a formal class structure with deadlines, so I was worried about how I would manage.

The school was great at helping me get started.

It turns out UoPeople offers a lot of resources to help students get comfortable with online learning, and with any other academic affairs. Your very first course is designed to teach you the ins and outs of the online learning environment, school policies, and a ton of tools for studying, reading, note taking, and writing.

Thanks to this course, which is called Online Education Strategies, I became quite comfortable being a distance education student, in a very short amount of time. Along with this, I found that both of my instructors where helpful answering questions, and they got back to me within reasonable time.

Summary.

Overall, my first impressions at the school were very good. Any issues, or concerns I had were taken care of, and I felt like the courses presented me with very interesting, quality information, while challenging my understanding of that info, through course discussions, and well thought out assignments.

What I learned this term.

Between the two courses, and the overall experience of preparing for graded tests, and the final exams, I learned a lot.

Online Education Strategies.

This course not only helped me to discover new ways of learning, and organizing notes, it also exposed some of my weaknesses that I was not previously aware of. It provided me with the tools I need to help strengthen these weaknesses so that I can become a stronger critical thinker throughout my life.

Critical thinking is not only a necessity for a good career, but should be regarded as a life skill as well. It takes a life time to develop, and a lot of commitment. I feel that this course put a strong emphasis on critical thinking, and how it should be applied throughout our academic careers at UoPeople.

Through my first term I became a stronger student, and developed techniques to help me learn material more effectively, write stronger essays, and prepare for exams in a way that reduces the end of term stress.

Globalization.

This course was designed to educate me on the process and effects of globalization. This included learning the three fundamental theories; World-System, World-Polity, and World-Culture theories, as well as an in-depth understanding of the pros and cons of globalization.

The course has brought me to a greater understanding of the way the world works, including the structure of the IMF, World Bank, and WTO. Furthermore I was introduced to the controversy of these institutions, learning about both sides of the debate.

Overall this course was laid out very well. It challenged me to think deeply about very controversial issues, and brainstorm possible solutions to some of the major global problems we face today.  I only wish the final exam challenged me as much as the course discussions, and written assignments did.

Sum it all up.

I had a great experience for my first term at University of the People. Learning from the experiences of my classmates who are from all parts of the globe, added a great amount of depth to my courses. I stated before that UoPeople uses the peer-to-peer learning model, which added extra insight into my assignments that I otherwise would not have received from a traditional grading model.

The peer-to-peer learning model is very powerful when other class mates take it seriously. Not only did I get powerful feedback, I also gained a ton of perspective through grading my peers. This allowed me to see how I could improve my own work, and see elements of assignments that I didn’t think about in the same way as someone else might have.

I really look forward to the rest of my academic career at this school, and can’t wait to get into some CS courses!

To all of my peers from class, good luck on the rest of your journey, and I hope to see you all in future courses! You were all very insightful, and honest in the course discussions. Learning about all of your stories, and world views has not only been educational for me, but very inspirational as well. Best wishes to all of you, and your families!

I also want to thank both of my instructors for volunteering their time to University of the People. Your contributions to this institution is changing the lives of many people who are eager for a higher education, who would not otherwise obtain one, without people like you. Because of people like you, the lives of individuals all over the world, and the lives of their communities will be bettered. Thank you 🙂

Cheers,

Dan


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6 thoughts on “My First Term at UoPeople – Summary”

  1. I’ve just started my first term at UoPeople and I’m finding Globalisation hard going. Looks like I should stick with it, from what you’ve said! Thanks for blogging.

  2. Welcome fully to the family. It has always been fun for us to have the opportunity of University of the People. I am a student of Computer science too.
    Have fun more, with greater challenges but dont get too excited especially when u have wonderful grade this first term, the greater challenge its on the way.

    1. Thanks for welcoming me, and thank you very much for commenting on my blog! I look forward to the challenges Computer Science has to offer – I’m very eager to learn!

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