Photograph of two pairs of shoes on a sandy beach. Their reflection is captured in the layer of water on the sand.

A Space to Reflect

Over to you.

The aim here is to help you identify and understand your own values, particularly in relation to engagement. You will get a lot more out of this process if you make some notes as you go along. So, go grab a pen and some paper.

The journey so far.

Ask yourself, “How did I get here?“.

Is this where you expected to be when you set out to study? Did you chose your subject because you are good at it, or because you are really interested in it? Is it something that your parents or someone else significant to you thought would be a good option, or was it 100% your own choice?

Photograph of a winding country road in Gwynedd, Wales.
Where will the road take you? Image by Ceri Thomas.

The attitudes you hold towards the degree you are studying will probably have an impact on your motivation to attend.  If this isn’t your first choice of degree, you could explore the options of switching to another with your Academic Adviser or School Support Officer.

The motivation to study.

Ask yourself, “What does this degree mean to me?

and “Where do I want to be when its over?“.


Step-stone bridge and wooden footbridge at pond in the Himalayan Garden of Harewood House; in Harewood, West Yorkshire, England
A path is formed by taking one step at a time. Image by Charlesdrakew.

If you are committed to completing this degree but aren’t totally in love with the subject, then consider what other rewards might be implicit. Could your degree be a stepping stone to something you really would like to do? The Careers Service can help you identify other goals in the form of employment or further study to work towards. Having something like this on the horizon should help you stay motivated, and bring meaning to what you are doing in the here and now.

What are my values?

Ask yourself, “What kind of person do I want to be?”.

Graduating with the best degree possible is a worthy goal, but three (+) years is a long journey and you need a sense that all this hard work will be worth the effort. How you experience this journey is just as important as reaching the end. So finally, thinking about education and the working environment, consider the kind of person you see yourself as now, and who you would like to be.

A photograph of several pill bottles, bearing the legend "Identity finders".
“Who am I?” Image by Richard Schatzberger.

On a day to day basis, what is meaningful and significant to you? What personal qualities do you want to bring to the teaching? Do you have a wish to succeed, or to prove yourself? Is there satisfaction to be gained from learning for learning’s sake, or from cultivating relationships with the people that you will meet along the way? What skills, knowledge and personal qualities would you like to develop while you are here?

Once you’re done here, take a moment to read back through your notes. You can then move on to the section on patterns, or chose another option from the menu.