The arduous yet rewarding journey of finding that perfect programme
How it all began?
Before coming here, I worked as a science teacher, teaching science to high school students. Though I love teaching, I was losing motivation due to several reasons. One of them was that I felt I had stagnated as a teacher because there was limited space for innovation and self-learning. The pedagogical approach I adopted derived from the conventional goal of getting the results in the yearly examinations. As a result, I was teaching the same stuff in a similar fashion year after year.
Eventually, I realized that I was interested in researching learning environments and how we can create better holistic learning experiences for our learners. I wanted to know everything about learning processes and how we can leverage technology in creating effective teaching-learning environments in educational setups. I wanted to contribute to developing ways to learn better and help learners prepare for contemporary global challenges. However, I had no idea about the right programme that could help me achieve all this.
The search for the perfect programme
Then, one fine day I sat with my laptop and began my search for programmes that centred around research in the field of education. It was not long before I realized I had opened a can of worms for myself with a never-ending list of search results.
So, I sat down and created a checklist to help with the selection process. This part of the process is fraught with confusion, frustrations, lots of cups of coffee and moments of dozing over your laptops and piles of checklists.
All said and done, I made up my mind for three programmes and applied to all of them.
The master's programme in Learning, Education and Technology at the University of Oulu was top on my priority order.
Why did I choose the master's programme in Learning, Education and Technology?
After the application process, I finally got the offer of admission from all the universities to which I had applied. After evaluating all the pros and cons, I made up my mind about the Learning Education and Technology (LET) programme. There were many reasons behind making that decision. I have enlisted them below:
- First, I read the study structure of the programme and found most of the courses relevant and in sync with my interest. For example, the courses on self-regulated and collaborative learning, and emerging trends in technology, aligned with my interest in understanding the learning processes and the role technology could play.
- Secondly, the university of Oulu also provided scholarships which mattered a great deal because I could have the best resources to pursue my research without worrying less about the financial aspects and affordability.
- Third and one of the crucial factors that influenced my decision was the programme's hands-on experience with emergent technologies.
- Fourth, the programme curriculum is designed according to the latest research in the field and updated continually to introduce newer and practical aspects to the study structure.
Lastly, the opportunity to study in Finland, a country renowned for the best quality education was impossible to let go of.
Some other fascinating reasons were also there, like ticking off the dream of watching northern lights on my bucket list, experiencing white Christmas in a snow-clad beautiful white city, living in nature with lakes and forests all around, studying in a serene yet stimulating environment and learning in an international and multicultural environment.
After considering all the above reasons, I finally found my perfect programme.
The journey so far
So, did I get what I had hoped for?
Well, the answer is a resounding YES!!!
As I write this blog, I have completed one and a half months of my journey with the programme. During this time, I have learnt a lot about 'learning' as a process, which changed my perspective on learning. I feel that no matter wherever I go, whatever I do, I can be good at it. This programme makes us skillful learners by allowing us to apply what we learn.
It is a unique programme that would not only confer upon me a degree after completion but also empower me with the lifelong skill of learning anything I wish. On top of that, I am also getting the opportunity to explore the latest technological resources to enhance and enrich my own learning experiences.
So, here I am, on the path to understanding and researching the learning process. The career opportunities after completing the course are extensive and diverse, so right now, I am focused on getting the best out of the programme and figuring out how I would apply the skills I gain, to reach my career goals.
….and the journey continues!!!
About the author
Nisha Yadav from India is a first-year master’s student in Learning, Education and Technology. Nisha has different hobbies, and one she doesn’t usually mention is daydreaming!