Personal reflection And Career Pathway
Instructions: Part 1: Building Your Network
When you registered for this course, you may or may not have had a clear understanding of the advanced graduate degree path you planned to pursue. As you reflect on what you have explored in your coursework and from your colleagues this semester, you may have gained additional insight on this important decision. The choice of a degree path is very personal and is based on your passion and the goals you want to reach. Do not worry if you are still not sure which path is the best one for you. Your student advisor can assist you by answering any questions you might have.
As you have engaged in interactions with your Instructor and colleagues, you may have begun to sense how important it is to build a network of individuals to support you in the degree pathway and specialization you select.
Many of you will attend a residency, and this is an excellent way of meeting people and forming relationships. Having a network of colleagues who are traveling an advanced graduate degree path at the same time you are is an excellent support system and may contribute to the success you have in the program. Networking, however, does not have to occur in a face-to-face setting. You might find that using Skype, smart phones, social media, and other methods are useful ways to stay connected and to support one another.
For Part 1, write a brief description of the degree path and specialization you believe you are planning to pursue. Then, explain at least two strategies you are likely to use to build a network with colleagues and explain why these particular strategies would support professional collaboration.
Part 2: Next Steps
In this module’s Discussion, you assumed a professional role associated with your degree path and specialization. In your post, you explained how you might approach the case study problem from the perspective of this role. In Part 1 of the Assignment, you wrote a brief description of the degree path and specialization you intend to pursue. For this part of the Assignment, you will explain how you might approach a topic about which you are passionate based on the degree path and specialization you are pursuing.
When you began this course, you identified topics about which you are passionate. You also began considering how obtaining your advanced graduate degree might help you make a difference in one of these areas. Select one of these topics to address for this Assignment.
Be sure to review the Degree Path Road Map to consider how professionals with different degrees address education-related problems. Reflect on how you might approach a problem related to your selected topic from the perspective of the degree path and specialization you are pursuing.
For Part 2, based on this reflection, identify two goals – one personal and one professional —that will support you as you continue on your chosen degree pathway.
Submit by Day 7 (of Week 11) a 3- to 4-page paper in which you accomplish the following:
• Write a brief description of the degree path and specialization you plan to pursue.
• Then, explain at least two strategies you are likely to use to build a network with colleagues and explain why these particular strategies would support professional collaboration.
• Explain how you might apply the perspective of your degree pathway and specialization to a problem related to a topic about which you are passionate.
• Identify two goals—one personal and one professional—that will support you as you continue on your chosen degree pathway. Explain how these personal and professional goals inform how you might address a problem related to your topic.
Note: If you submit the paper prior to the due date of Day 7 of Week 11, you may receive Instructor feedback early. If your Instructor deems your draft in excellent shape, he/she may not require a revised, final submission. The final version is due Day 7 of Week 11.
Personal reflection And Career Pathway
The degree path that I plan to pursue is a Ph.D. in Early Childhood Education. The reason I am attracted to this area of specialization is that I find this field to be one of the most engaging types of instructional learning or teaching, more so because it entails working with young children. I believe that a lot can be accomplished in this field since numerous research has been conducted on the manner in which children perceive the world and the different ways in which they learn. Most people underestimate the opporutniti4s and possibilities within early childhood Education, which is a situation I yearn to change.
One of the first strategies that I will use to build networks with fellow colleagues is use of professional networking sites. I find this quite an effective method of building and strengthening professional networks with colleagues in the field of education due to the technological capabilities of the current world. The ubiquity of the internet has given rise to a new force –technological, social, economic, political – one that connects not only people within the same geographic area but globally. In this regard, professional networking sites will give me the opportunity to connect with professionals in my field from all over the world. Use of professional netwokring sites not only increases the chances of building an extensive professional network, but it also gives me a chance to be exposed to professionals with different worldviews, backgrounds and other determining characteristics that increase the diversity of the professional network. Networks that I may consider include sites such as Spoke, LinkedIn, Zoodango, and Ryze.
Another method that I will use to build my professional network is the use of organizations and committees. Clubs, committees, and organizations provide a great opportunity for me to meet other professionals in this field. This will entail attending talks and meetings where I can have the chance of interacting with individual members and finding out more about their opinions, work and other relevant issues. As opposed to the earlier strategy, this one has the extra advantage of allowing for face-to-face, in-person meetings. Face-to-face meetings have some benefits on top of remote meetings. One of these has to do with the fact that they allow speakers to capture attention in a way not possible within a virtual environment. Further, it has been shown that emotions are contagious. Hence, people within a group will mutually influence each other’s attitudes. Face-to-face meetings also make it easier to focus. This is an important fact especially within this modern age of multi-tasking, which is most probably bound to happen during virtual meetings, where people might tempt to check on emails or do something else.
One issue with which I am particularly passionate about is the application of Common Core State Standards within Kindergarten classrooms. An example of this practice occurs within the State of Ohio, within the South region, whereby these standards are being implemented in the kindergarten classrooms. The issue comes about since the National Association for Education of Young Children (NAEYC) recognized that the preceding mentioned application of Common Core State Standards to kindergarten classrooms provides both cause for opportunity and concern. The reason for concern comes about since Common Core state standards may not necessarily align with developmentally appropriate practice. The best way to overcome these issues is to subject these standards to formal, data-driven validation studies based on the implementation of the criteria. Hence, I aim to conduct research that will determine why common core state standards are inappropriate for kindergarten.
One professional goal related to the issue mentioned above is to carry out research within this field. Most career people engage within their career paths with only the goals concerning promotion, networking, building new skills, or feeling more confident or happier during the workdays. However, I find that the best way that I can contribute to most of the issue close to my heart within this field is through research. In this regard, I aim to not only carry out research within the field but also to ensure that the research findings come as close to implementation as possible. The problem with most research done is that the conclusions are never implemented hence having a situation whereby people are cognizant of the issues at hand and the possible remedies for these matters but fail to carry out those recommendations; nothing changes.
One personal career path goal that I have is to work in the best possible way with my colleagues. In this case, I aim to be as efficient in communication as possible so as to minimize any communication issues that may crop up in the course of the work. Furthermore, I also aim to care more about my colleagues, particularly those that I will be working in proximity with. This entails simple things such as showing kindness, appreciation and gratitude for their work as well as remembering other significant anniversaries such as birthdays and wedding anniversaries.