Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Coursework and practicals

It's been a hectic week. I did indeed spend the whole weekend working, except for a necessary trip to the supermarket on Sunday, but I did finish the whole stupid Metabolic Syndrome essay. On Monday I did the 'lay summary', tidied up the references, checked it for plagiarism, printed it, filled out the cover sheet and posted the damn thing in the coursework box. Thank goodness that's over.

Whenever anyone is crazy enough to ask me, I tell them how much I'm enjoying the course. At length. When they glaze over, pretend their mobile phone is ringing, remember an important prior engagement and start to walk away I realise they were probably just asking to be polite. If anyone had asked me how I'm enjoying the course at about 11 a.m. on Monday, they would have received a much shorter answer that included some terse Anglo-Saxon words. This is really the first time I haven't enjoyed a piece of coursework. Metabolic Syndrome is not very interesting.

It's not a proper disease, really, just a collection of symptoms that indicate a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes (the type that's usually controlled by diet and drugs rather than insulin) and cardiovascular disease like atherosclerosis, angina, heart attack and stroke. There's no specific treatment except to treat the symptoms, and the main advice is to eat a healthy diet and lose weight. Duh! Like we didn't know this was a good idea. I am SO not interested in Metabolic Syndrome.

So Monday was full of this essay and then lectures and then badminton (hooray for badminton), and Tuesday was full of practicals. Cooking in the morning went well - preparing corned beef hash didn't take long in comparison to some of the dishes where other people were having to make pizza bases and chips and stuff. The afternoon was a bit different - we had a refresher session in Basic Life Support (CPR and ventilation), followed by the opportunity to measure blood pressure using the old-fashioned stethoscope and sphygmomanometer, stick a naso-gastric tube down a dummy's nostril, and (best of all) take fake blood from a fake arm using a real syringe and vacu-tube and everything!

Just for a change, I mingled in some other groups, and worked with some of the students that I've hardly spoken to before, which felt good because they turned out to be very nice. It's getting to the point, though, where I can't admit that I still don't know some of the names of the students on my course. Today I was slightly reassured, when another girl admitted that she didn't know everyone's names either.

It's been an exhausting few days, but I still like my course really. You'd get a medium-length answer if you asked me now - I'm pretty tired, and there's still loads of coursework to do, but on the whole, it's going OK.


aims said...

'checking for plaigarism' - good comment Lola!

Lola said...

Checking for plagiarism is a big deal, they are very strict about it. We have to submit assignments through an online system that checks your essay phrase by phrase against everything that's ever been written (at least, that's what we're told), and gives you a 'plagiarism' score. If you've copied anything without referencing the source, it shows up. Direct quotes of more than a single sentence are frowned upon too.