Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Back to Uni
The academic year has started again (should allow me more opportunities to blog) and it was great to be back at the University of Wolverhampton. This week is the first week for lectures and seminars for returning students (freshers week was last week). I have spent most of this week meeting old friends to see if we would be in the same lectures and seminars and to see if our timetables would allow for us to get together for lunch on certain days.
This year I have moved on to Level 2 of my Politics and Social Policy Degree and am also serving as a Non-portfolio officer of the University of Wolverhampton Students Union. Freshers week and this week also gave me a great chance to meet my fellow executive officers to see what they have been up to over the summer. The sabbatical officers have already done so much I can’t wait to get going and start delivering on my manifesto.
As a level 2 politics student my modules for semester 1 are Contemporary Britain and Political Sociology: power, participation and protest and for semester 2 Europe United and World Politics. I had my first lecture for Contemporary Britain today. Contemporary Britain is a social, cultural and political history of Britain. Today’s lecture by Professor John Callaghan looked at what Orwell described as characteristics of the English in 1943 and how they differ from the characteristics of the English described by Jeremy Paxman in a book he wrote in 1998. I am looking forward to the remainder of this module as I did a lot of similar work for my A Level History this will be a perfect opportunity to build on the knowledge and experiences gained then. My first Political Sociology: power, participation and protest lecture is tomorrow. Political Sociology: power, participation and protest looks at the theories of and debates around citizenship participation and representations. I am really looking forward to this module as the Module Leader is Doctor Michael Cunningham who was my lecturer for Introduction to British Politics and Political Analysis and while I disagreed with Doctor Cunningham on certain issues I really enjoyed his style of teaching and his participation in debates during seminars.
Semester 2 seems like along long away but I am looking forward to Europe United and World Politics as an internationalist I like learning about international politics and like participating in debates and discussions as happens in seminars with regard to Britain’s place in Europe and the World as well as discussions about the good, the bad and ugly effects of globalisation. The module leader for Europe United is Doctor Martin Dangerfield who I have never come across during my time at University and for World Politics its Doctor Eamonn O’Kane who is my personal tutor but I have only met three times (induction, 1 lecture and when picking level 2 modules). I enjoyed Doctor O’Kane lecture regarding the media during A Global World at Level 1.
For Social Policy in this semester I am taking Approaches to Poverty & Social Exclusion and European Social Policy in Semester 1 along with Housing, Health & Social Care and Research for Applied Social Sciences in semester 2. My first Approaches to Poverty & Social Exclusion lecture was yesterday and it was great to meet my friends from last year again. Approaches to Poverty & Social Exclusion examine contemporary policy responses and debates relating to poverty & social exclusion. I’m looking forward to this module as I have a genuine interest in tackling poverty and social exclusion across the world. I am looking forward to European Social Policy so that I can develop an understanding of social policies across the European Union. I am also looking forward to Housing, Health & Social Care which involves exploring the economic and fiscal base for social policies.
The down side of picking all these interesting modules is that in Semester 1 I will have to complete six essays, a presentation and a report. In Semester 2 I will have to complete an essay, three exams, two presentations, a research plan and a review. All this along with student union commitments should make me a fairly busy student.

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