Reflective Journal

The reflective journal is the second mode of assessment for this unit and involves an analysis of the study and academic skills developed during period one. It should start with an explanation of study and academic skills but with specific reference to employability. Therefore, it is recommended that you contextualise the skills you have developed by mapping them against a job related to your degree (e.g. performance analyst, fitness coach or a gym manager). You should therefore source an advertised job profile and description to help support your analysis. This will then be followed by the completion of a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis of the study and academic skills developed during period one. You should then identify how you intend to develop the skills by formulating an action plan which will help to maximise your potential for academic success but also in finding employment after you graduate.

The structure of the assignment will be as follows:
1) Title page
a. The title page of the report must include the unit title, student number, name of the unit leader and the hand in date.
2) Contents page
a. Section number
b. Description of the section
c. Page number(s)
3) Introduction (200 words)
a. Explain the need to develop study and academic skills within the context of employability.
b. Define the key terms (e.g. skills, study skills etc.)
c. Use academic literature to support the need to develop academic skills and to define keys terms
d. The aim of the assignment.
4) SWOT Analysis. Introduce by detailing the purpose of a SWOT analysis (300 words)
a. Strengths (internal to you)
i. What skills do you do well?
ii. What do you really enjoy doing?
iii. What do others see as your strengths?
b. Weaknesses (internal to you)
i. What do you find really difficult?
ii. What could you improve?
iii. What are others likely to see as weaknesses?
c. Opportunities (external)
i. What opportunities are open to you?
ii. What trends could you take advantage of?
iii. How can you turn your strengths into opportunities?
d. Threats (external)
i. What could stop you achieving your potential?
ii. What is your competition doing?
iii. What threats do your weaknesses expose you to?
5) Identify the study and academic skills that you would need to develop to maximise the likelihood of succeeding in your chosen degree course (300 words). You should also:
a. Explain how you intend to develop the skills marked as an area of weakness. It is recommended that you provide academic literature to support the use of specific techniques in developing the required skills.
b. Detail a timeframe to help ensure the skills are developed appropriately.
c. If it helps, identify a specific career destination related to your degree course and examine the specific skills the employers are looking for you to be able to demonstrate.
6) Conclusion (200 words)
a. Summarise the main points raised by the assignment
7) Appendices
a. Job advert and specification

Additional presentation comments

– 1.5 line spacing
– Font: Trebuchet OR Arial, size = 12
– Fully justify text (i.e. text aligned on both sides)
– Page numbers: located at the bottom of the page and centred
– Footer:
o Right aligned
o Student number (not name)
o Assignment description (i.e. written assignment)
o Unit code (i.e. HES005)
o Year of study (i.e. 2014 – 15).

Recommended Reading :
COTTRELL, S. 2013. The Study Skills Handbook. 4th ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave.
CRYER, P. 2005. Developing and Applying Study Skills. 3rd ed. Maidenhead: Open University
HUNT, A. 2005. Your Research Project: How to Manage it. Oxon: Routledge.
PEARS, R. and G. SHIELDS, 2010. Cite them Right: The Essential Referencing Guide. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

 

 

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