First Assignment Task – Process Map
If you have gone through the previous material & are comfortable with what’s expected of you then you are ready to start work on your assignment.
The first part of the assignment requires you to provide:
A description of your personal and professional development by providing relevant examples of such activities derived from the workplace.
To help you do this, work through the map and text below. If you have any questions, contact the module tutor.
Once you have completed the steps below, contact the module tutor to discuss your work.
In order to start producing your portfolio, you need to draw up a list of appropriate work-related activities that you feel would be suitable examples. At this precise moment, working on your own, you may have no idea what is a suitable example and what isn’t.
The process map above will help you start the process of what is suitable. When you’ve followed the map below and drawn up your list, contact your academic tutor for his advice.
Remember that the reason you are doing this is to find examples of you work that demonstrate a certain degree of learning.
1. Reflect on your work over the last 2-3 years
The best way to start any new work is by – thinking first! Think back on the work you’ve performed over the last 2-3 years. Your job title may only be a few words long, but the work you do is likely to involve a number of projects or tasks. If you have changed jobs in the last 3 years or the nature of your work has changed that doesn’t matter here.
2. List your activities
Make a list of all the tasks or projects that you have thought of. At this stage, don’t be too self-critical. If you’re unsure whether it should be put on the list, write it down anyway. It’s easier to remove it than trying to remember it at a later stage. There is no limit to how many to write down. In fact, the more you write down the better it is.
3. For each activity consider:
Now starts the filtering process.
4. Your contribution
Work through your list and assess your contribution to each item. Did you undertake a particular task alone, or were you part of a team or group? If part of a team, did you play a significant or minor role compared with the others? Working alongside a team is an integral part of working practice, so just because someone helped you doesn’t exclude a task from being included. Find a way of scoring your contribution for each task, perhaps give 10 for a sole contribution down to 1 for a minor contribution.
Work your way through your list again but this time looking at the outputs from the tasks. Has there been a clear output such as a report or change in practice? Have the outputs been more subtle, such as a change in attitude or new awareness. Again, find a way of scoring what each task produced. Perhaps use a 10 point scale with 10 being a definite and quantifiable output.
Each task that you include in your portfolio is a ‘claim’. Whenever putting forward a claim you need evidence to back up that claim. For instance, if you’re putting in a expenses claim for a meal, you would need to also include the receipt as it proves you have paid for the meal. The type of evidence you need for your claim in the portfolio is many and varied. It could be a testimonial from your line-manager or a copy of a report or an artefact of some description. It is difficult to go through all the options here, but discuss what could be put forward as evidence with your module tutor.
For each item on your list of tasks, think about the learning you derived from that task. Sometimes the learning from a task at work is not always apparent immediately and only when you go to repeat that task or perform a related one, you think back to your earlier experience and can perform the next task better. Sometimes you can think of improved ways of performing the task or enhancing the output. All these actions involve learning. If you feel unsure about what types of learning occur, discuss with your module tutor.
Some of the tasks and projects you have written down on your list may involve sensitive or confidential information related to your employer or area of work. Before discussing any of these items with your module tutor, speak to your line manager to get clearance and if possible get this written down. Rest assured that your module tutor is bound by confidentiality and your work will not be discussed with anyone else without your clear permission.
9. Produce a ‘long’ list of candidate tasks
From your original list, use the procedures above to prune them down to around 10 and discuss these with your tutor.
10. Short list agreement
When you discuss your long list with your tutor, a short list will be produced and you will be ready to move on to Part 2 of the assignment.