Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Ambitions Fulfilled

Yesterday I fulfilled part of a lifetime's ambition - to be enrolled in a course in Queen's University Belfast! I began my MA programme with the university with the first class of Research Methods - we will be exploring how to construct Bibliographies and conduct research using Libraries, Databases and Archives.

Sounds dry as dust, doesn't it? But in these places are the most unlikely resources, and they're just as useful for someone doing Creative Writing as they are for someone researching for Medieval English - you just won't know until you start looking, what subjects will interest you and what inspiration could be waiting inside a book, or letter, or record of someones life.

We learned about the Library of Congress cataloguing system and how each writer has their own number assigned to them as well as certain letters. All reference books begin with Z, for example and literary books belonging to the UK and Ireland are PR. We've got our first assignment too due in three weeks, finding a bibliographic list of books on 1 of 24 possible subjects.

I was slightly bemused, as being so used to studying on my own with the OU with the odd tutorial or day school has made me realise how pampered the ordinary student in brick uni is, with lectures, hand-outs and the novelty of having other students to physically talk to! I think I will enjoy this year very much! Even the mornings with the cold and darkness that will come soon won't bother me now :)

11 comments:

Minx said...

Nothing better to take your mind off a long, dark winter. Stride ahead, Cailleach, the runes are saying 'yes'!

belle said...

Dry as dust? Sounds like heaven to me ... but that probably says something about me ...! Enjoy.

Jan said...

Enjoy all this, Cailleach; it sounds fabulous.
Seize all the roses and smell all the days!!

Cailleach said...

Girls, just watch me grab all those roses, thorns and all..! I waited long enough :)

john.g. said...

Good luck, Cailleach!!

Debi said...

Your time is well and truly here. Ride that wave!

Cailleach said...

Thanks John G and Debi - got me surfboard all waxed and ready to go... be prepared for a few falls though...think it's gonna be a bumpy ride :D

watermaid said...

It doesn't sound dry as dust to me. On A300, once I discovered JSTOR, I spent many happy hours.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

YAAAAAAAY!!!!!

I am SO excited for you, and a wee bit jealous in a good way.

I'm in a research class right now that is pretty much doing the same thing.
I think you are more excited about it than I am, though.
Glad you have classmates and actual in-class teachers... you will enjoy this immensely, I think. Will enjoy reading about it!

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Cailleach said...

Watermaid, I think JSTOR will come in very useful too - trying to sneak in there loads before my privleges revert back to nil apres course. The lecturer we had the other day did make it seem quite exciting: the thing is that there is loads of stuff out there, it just needs finding!

Scarlett, it's all a great big adventure! I just hope I can keep up with it all...

Swearing Mother said...

Heck that sounds GOOD! Enjoy it!

Best wishes, and thanks for visiting my blog. Looking forward to reading you again soon!