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Preparation, preparation, preparation October 1, 2005

Posted by ayasawada in Personal.
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Next week marks the start of a new era in my life – the era of postgraduate education. After swearing on my final-year revision notes that I would never take another exam again, here I am signing up for another year of study, another year of lectures, 12 months of tutorials, long hours in the library, exam stress, feelings of inadequacy as one quickly discovers that everyone else is smarter! I’m looking forward to it.

In the weeks that followed my finishing work and Japanese, I’ve been largely sitting at home trying to get through my reading list. “You don’t have to do it” it says, but of course any fool wants to get ahead of the game. Thankfully, the list says stuff like “go to the theatre”, “watch movies”, “surf the internet” and “read Wired magazine”. The actual background reading isn’t bad either. I’ve read four books: one on English grammer (v.useful); one on Science in the Public (extremely interesting); one on Communication Studies (v.enlightening); and Arcadia by Tom Stoppard (a good play). I made a habit of borrowing Nature and New Scientist from work over the last few months and I’ve been trying to keep that up by reading the online versions. I’ve also been trying (and failing) to keep up with the newspapers, watch the Discovery Channel and read a the piles of reports, articles and newsletters I obtained from work. I also paid a visit the Science Museum on Tuesday, which is fantastic. There really is no let-up on learning there – even in the toilets! Yet they have gone out of their way to make it accessible for everyday members of the public and I their choice of communication methods, layout, wording, media is fascinating. I’m looking forward to analysing this in more detail next year.

I registered at Imperial this week too – so I am now offically a student again! Student discounts ahoy! But we’ll see about the ‘free study time’. Something tells me this MSc isn’t the type of thing to offer much of that. I was really good to be back on a Uni campus though. Term officially starts next week, so it wasn’t really buzzing just yet. But there was enough of an atmosphere to generate that feeling of opportunity and excitement once more (or perhaps it was just the attractive Chinese and Japanese girls….). I’d forgotten about the registration queues though, still a pain in the ass.

I’ve got high hopes for this year, but the nerves are starting to set in. Am I good enough? Will there be too much pressure? What if I really don’t like the atmosphere? And finances (or lack of)! But I’m getting ahead of myself here. I really do think the course will be interesting. I am looking forward to carrying on with Japanese at lunchtimes and there’s always the IC AnimeSoc to blow off some steam. For sure, it’ll be intense but I’ve prepared and I won’t know what it’s like until I start. For the last two weeks I’ve been in two minds, whether to do more reading (cause there’s so much more I want to read!) or to just relax and enjoy the free days whilst I have them. In the final calm before the storm, perhaps it’s time for the latter. I get overnight assignments from Wednesday!

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