Third year BSc Biomedical Sciences student Sophie Benton tells us how skills enrichment workshops have increased her confidence with academic writing.
Which skills workshops have you attended?
I’ve been to a range of skill sessions which have focused on different key assessment-based skills such as how to write an essay.
I also attended the two presentation skills classes. These were very useful as you were able to recap information and were put on the spot to make a mini-presentation during the session. You then received feedback which was so useful.
What was your motivation to sign up for the skills enrichment classes?
My motivation was driven by my feedback and wanting to improve in the areas that I personally thought I needed to develop, like writing.
I heard about the workshops in my first year but I didn't make the time to go as my course was very intense. But having tutors and lecturers recommend the sessions was something that pushed me to go.
Many of the sessions took place just after my university timetable, which can sometimes be off-putting after a long day. But I always tried to go.
How have the workshops helped you?
Participating in the writing and critical thinking sessions allowed me to explore new skills that I wouldn’t have known about. Most of the sessions gave me great information that could be easily implemented into my work.
The tutors recommended that you bring some of your own writing along, so being able to receive personal feedback was great and the feedback I received was amazing. Overall the tutors have really helped to improve my writing.
I enjoyed the interactive way the sessions were delivered. You get the most out of the session when everyone is prepared to get involved and contribute. It’s a very constructive space, so people shouldn’t be anxious about sharing their work.
The sessions have helped to build my confidence, as they allowed me to ask for more help in the areas in which I have issues.
In Semester 1 of Year 2 I had a lot of feedback on how I structured my essay. By going to the skills enrichment sessions and working on this issue, I was able to improve my essay, allowing me to reach higher grades.
Do you think these skills will also help you in the future?
Most of the skills areas are useful in all aspects of life, for example being able to be concise in your writing and argue a point successfully.
In other areas, I might have to produce and deliver a lot of presentations. Also, being able to look at different sources and pick out correlations and differences is a useful transferable skill.
It’s important to try to remember all of the skills and information that you’ve learned, so you can apply them in the future.