Wahooooo – it’s Fall Reading Break! I don’t know about y’all, but if you’re anywhere near as tired as we are, then this break couldn’t come at a better time. In fact, did you know that the SAMHC advocated for this break for 5 WHOLE YEARS to get it into the MHC calendar? It was hard work but so worth it – and we’re just as thrilled to be reaping the rewards with everyone else 😀
While everyone is off campus getting some needed rest and relaxation, we figured it might be good to give 3 of our top ways to beat procrastination and de-stress over break to help make the most of it!
Exercise – Exercise is not only proven to help lift your mood but it’s also a great way to help boost your ability to get back to work when you’re struggling with a paper or study guide. Best of all, if you’re in town still, the gym at MHC is free to students – all you need to show is your campus ID!
Connect – Connection is one of the major keys to happiness. Take time over the break if you’re home to reconnect with family and friends or if you’re still in the Hat, get out and get into our vibrant community. Whether it’s for a coffee or even a short walk, connecting in some way will make you ready to tackle those assignments with a fresh brain!
Treat Yo’ Self – As famously stated on Parks And Recreation, you gotta treat yo’ self every so often! Channel your inner Donna and Tom and go do something you LOVE! Even if it’s just taking the time to watch your favorite movie or read a few chapters of your favorite book, a little treat will go a long way to helping you de-stress and that’s really what this break is designed for!
Now get out there and enjoy the break – we’re packed and
ready for a little R&R ourselves ;D
The proper acknowledgement of sources might seem like a no-brainer; as indeed it should; however, citations are not used simply to avoid plagiarism; they have a fundamental role: to discover truth by building on previous discoveries.
The painting above by Nicolas Poussin (1594-1665) exemplifies the metaphor of dwarfs, standing on the shoulders (Latin: nanos gigantum humeris insidentes). In other words, we are the dwarfs in the painting, “but dwarfs who stand on the shoulders of those giants, small though we are, we sometimes manage to see farther on the horizon than they” (Eco, 1980, p. 93). Therefore, citing is acknowledging the research that has laid the groundwork to build your own research, which sometimes manages to produce new findings–to see farther.
So, what is a citation?
A citation is a formal reference to a source that you consulted and obtained information from while writing your research paper. Hence, a citation is the way you tell your readers that certain material in your work came from another source. There are different ways of citing sources, the set of rules that dictates how to cite your sources is a citation style.
The main citation styles based on wide-use are: (Yale, n.d.).
APA: American Psychological Association
Used in the Social Sciences: Education, Psychology, Business, etc.
Author-date citation style.
Emphasizes dates (years) of publication, reflecting the belief that current research, knowledge and theories has greater value, than does past scholarship.
MLA: Modern Language Association style
Used in the humanities, for example, English Studies, Art, Literature, and Theater.
Author-page citation style.
Emphasizes pages because humanities research highlights how one piece of writing influences another. MLA’s author-page style allows scholars to track down easily the exact sentences you are analyzing.
Used in the social sciences, for example, History, Anthropology
Two basic documentation systems: (1) notes and bibliography and (2) author-date
Emphasizes ease of reading, the primary advantages of using footnotes are simplicity and concision. Using footnotes instead of parenthetical author-date information allows the reader to focus on the evidence, instead of being distracted by the publication information about that evidence.
When to Cite (Ohio State University Libraries, n.d.).
when you quote: if you cite word-by-word what an author
has already written, you must use quotation marks around those words and give
credit to the original author
when you paraphrase or summarize: when you restate in your
own words and tone what somebody else has said. Paraphrasing requires a good
understanding of the original passage; its purpose is to make information clear
in the conversation different sources and having with each other.
Cite when information is highly debatable: when information is controversial, politicized, or numerical you should always provide a citation.
Where can I find help?
MHC Libraries created a
citation guide where you can find citation examples, sample papers, and video tutorials
to three major citation styles: APA,
MLA, and Chicago.
The month of
November is associated with remembering those who fought for the freedom of
Canadians. A time where we honour our veterans on Remembrance Day and proudly
display our poppies on November 11 as a sign of our respect and thanks. And we
do have a lot to be thankful for in ‘the land of the True North Strong and Free’.
For it is that very freedom that has allowed us to choose our own path and be
who we want to be.
Sometimes the idea
of choosing our own path is intimidating to students. What if we choose wrong? But
that’s the simple beauty of freedom. You have plenty of choices and options and
opportunities to try and try again until you find what fits and feels authentic
to who you are.
November is also
Canada Career Month. Because of the freedom afforded to Canadians, you have
possibilities to explore and services to help you identify your strengths and
interests, articulate your personal and career goals, and help you discover
opportunities that match. And whether you realize it or not, these activities
greatly contribute to your career development.
Standards & Guidelines for Career Development Practitioners (2012) defines
career development as a “lifelong process of managing learning, work, leisure,
and transitions in order to move toward a personally determined and preferred
future”(1). This puts you in the driver’s seat to navigate your path
in whatever way feels most comfortable for you. You have the freedom to make
choices along the way that will affect the direction your career will take.
One way to ensure that you are making informed choices is to invest some time considering your career development and researching options. It is interesting to note that Statistics Canada says the average age of retirement is 63.5 years old (2). From the moment you first start working until the day you retire, you may have invested thousands of hours in the labour force. By comparison, how much time do you actually invest in thinking about your career development and in researching your interests, educational options, and career possibilities?
Canada Career Month is about fostering awareness of career development and reminding Canadians that they are in the driver’s seat. We have the freedom to make choices about the kind of life we want and we have access to services and supports to enhance our quality of life. As we explore the possibilities available to us, let us honour and remember those who paved the way by embracing our right to choose, investing our time in making informed choices, finding our career purpose, and creating a life well lived.
The Vera Bracken Library is home to a collection of 10 LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Core sets available for use. The library at Brooks campus also has 1 kit available for borrowing. These kits are available for sign out individually or as a set of 10.
LEGO Mindstorms EV3 kits contain a programmable P-brick, sensors, and LEGO pieces, these kits support the development of new skills and facilitate active learning through the creation of robotics, engineering and learning to code.
They support coursework in education, engineering, visual communications, and many others. The LEGO Mindstorms EV3 kits also provide opportunities for group learning and team-building exercises for both students and staff.
If you’re not sure what to build there is step-by-step guides available online which one can follow. There is also tutorials available online showing you how to use the programming language. To program your robot there is a few different options. There is a mobile version, which doesn’t have all the features of the full version but has all the basic functions. There is the full version which is available for PC and Mac and then there is also some developer programs. These programs are more advanced and let you use other programming languages such as python and C++.
Lego Mindstorms are great for any level of learning and how complicated you wish to go is completely up to you.
The library recently used them as a team building activity for college day. To save on time the robots were partially built but participants were responsible for finishing building them as well as programming them to run an obstacle course. In total the activity ran just over an hour and everyone spoke highly of it.
The best part of this type of activity is that it can always be improved upon. For example, if we did team building another day we would have been able to pull out the robots again and have everyone improve their programs. It’s an incredibly fun way to learn.
Building the robots.
Learning to program.
Everyone hard at work.
The library lineup.
If you would like more information on Lego Mindstorms please contact the library at email@example.com
“Grit”, defined as having the ability to persist in something and persevere when you face obstacles, is important because it is a driver of achievement and success, aside from what talent and intelligence contribute. Being naturally talented and intelligent are great, however to truly do well and thrive, it is important to have a skill set that allows students to persevere. Students who possess the quality of “grit” are more likely to experience academic success, and it is equally as important as talent and intelligence.
In order to stick with a long term goal such as earning a certificate, diploma or degree, here are some ideas and tools that can help you develop “grit”:
Get Clarity: clearly define what your goals are and be sure your goals are related to your core values. Get clear on what your course plan is, get clear on whether your program is related to your values and get clear on your “WHY”, so that when things get challenging, you can go back to the meaningful nature of why you are doing this in the first place.
Prime Enthusiasm: create energy and excitement daily by consciously deciding how you want to show up everyday. Get involved, visit your goals daily and create an emotional connection to what you want. Be responsible for the energy you are projecting and transferring to others and be aware of the energy that is being “downloaded” to you by others. Draw clear boundaries around habits and people that are energy vampires, so you can sustain the energy that is required to work through challenges. Eat healthy, move your body, look for inspiration from positive people and make time for self-care and connection.
Block Time: time management with intention is a critical skill to possess in order to sustain success long term. identify blocks of time for class, studying, sleeping, and connecting with others. Block time to engage in school related activity as well as activities outside of school so you feel a sense of control and organization. Plan your days with intentional tasks related to your goals. Identify any time wasters and reduce or eliminate them. Spend time on tasks that create value and eliminate tasks that don’t benefit you.
Enlist a Team: successful students have a team of support and recognize that asking for help is a strength not a weakness. Identify what areas of development are required of you and tap into the resources available on and off campus. Consider student supports such as writing help, academic coaching, instructors and counselors as being part of your team. Reach out to other students or people in your field of study as mentors and create an environment that allows for success.
If you would like help identifying what tools you require in order to develop grit, follow the link below to book an appointment online and see me for help!
All that planning, and we are left in the wake of Long Night Against Procrastination (LNAP), with smiles on our faces! Why? Because you, the students, were in full force last night!
The Library was packed, almost every seat filled, all white boards bearing the weight of erasable ink notes in blue, and black, and red…pink, and purple, and green… the list goes on and on!
Popcorn was plentiful and snacks were everywhere to be had! And pizza! Well, that line-up was daunting, but we made it through everyone and there was even a bit of leftover for a second-round, which some of you gladly joined for! Studying really works up the appetite!
The sessions were varied and new this year, and the LNAP team was able to stream seven of these sessions to our Brooks Campus for students there to participate in the event too!
Medicine Wheel activities, weighted blanket sleep clinics, nutritionist talks, and resiliency plans were all popular. The Therapy dogs and extra (long) friends were a real hit and, though I have thought hard about this point, I am not sure who enjoyed the experience more; the students getting to snuggle the dogs, or the dogs getting to snuggle the students?!
Whether it was in an academic session, a physical activity, or a mental health outlet, students accessed the front line services that are available to them year-round. The possibilities were endless and the options connected to students, making this night as successful as we could have ever hoped!
LNAP is more than just about conquering procrastination. This night is for any and all students throughout the course of the post-secondary education. This night is about connecting the students to those services that might make them just that little bit (or a lot) of difference to their lives.
LNAP is for everyone, every-time! We close the Fall 2019 event still riding the excitement and full bellies from last night, and eagerly anticipating the next LNAP coming to Medicine Hat College!
What are some sessions you would like to see for next time? Leave a comment!
LNAP is the Long Night Against Procrastination, but what does that really mean? It means that we bring student services on site for that night to be accessed by you after their normal hours of work.
Do you need to chat with the Academic Strategist on study tips? What about Writing Support to improve thesis development and paper structure? Do you have a question for Library’s Information Team on how to get started on research or how to make APA or MLA citations?
If the answer to any of these is yes, than LNAP is for you!
What if you’re not a procrastinator? What if you have all of the above handled? I’m excited to say that the offerings don’t end there! Have you ever thought about how your mental health is affecting your academic health? One can affect the other and vice-versa, which is why it is essential to take care of both! In that, LNAP is for you!
Nutrition and sleep hygiene can severely limit you if you’re not taking care, so why not take a session to gather tips on establishing good patterns in these areas! A talk on True Grit will help enforce resilience tools, creating a base for you to ground yourself on. Physical activities (Belly Dancing, Urban Poling, Yoga, and Zumba) throughout the night provide a welcomed break to the studying of the night, but also of the semester! The Zen Zone (Southwest Lounge in the Library) will have Medicine Wheel Activities at set times, and rock painting will occur all night. And then… there are the dogs!! Come hangout with our furry friends for a laugh, a cuddle, and maybe a puppy kiss or two!
This is your invitation to an amazing night centered around the most important thing in our school. You, the students! LNAP is for you!