Proper Time Management, Observational Learning, and Vicarious Experiences


Participants listening to Gen. De Leon speak inside Camp Aguinaldo. Courtesy to my friends in IGSL who took this photo.

Q: An important behavior. In a distance learning environment, such as this course, what one particular behavior do you think is most important for learners to acquire?

A: I believe that proper time management favorable to the accomplishment of this course is the one particular behavior that is important for all learners to acquire. This is both for those who are working and non-working students enrolled here. Why? Because it may be tempting to prolong or procrastinate because we don’t personally see any teacher talking or looking at us to make us do our requirements. We simply have to pass it on time.

For those of us who are working, there might be responsibilities and interests we wish to pursue but we have to intentionally set time to finish our requirements. This week until next week, I have six more possible extra-curricular endeavors: sitting in an ad hoc committee to interview a new applicant for teacher, meeting a Dean in a college of law, going to Rizal’s house in Laguna, visiting Kawit, Cavite, interviewing a relative who was a former Vice Mayor, and meeting a descendant of one of our recognized Philippine presidents. I have been wanting to do all of these in the past several weeks and months, but I have to finish or make sure that I’ll have time to do more important tasks first, especially those that would affect my life and career for the long-term.

Q: As a participant in this class, use social learning theories as basis to make recommendations on how students in distance learning can help other acquire this behavior.

A: Through observational learning or as the students enrolled in this class can observe each other, this can be done through the engagements in the post for the discussion forums and eJournal. For me, I am encouraged to see that there are students who have actually posted first to the forums and made eJournals, even if I realize that some of those may be part of our learning groups in the course. Somehow, it challenges or stimulates me to start reading a few pages or browsing through some recommended links already until I finish reading the resources in the module.

This may also be helpful for the rest of us who seem to be unsure of our answers or approach in answering the discussion topics as we see our classmates posting their answers. This is not to say that we wish to imitate or copy exactly our classmates’ works but this may help us affirm to ourselves whether or not the format and concepts that we wish to see in our discussion posts and eJournals seem to be in consonance with other students. More so, when we do not know what to do, we can see those who have gone ahead on how they did it. Additionally, reading other students’ posts help us mirror ourselves as to how our post would actually sound or look like if we would choose a specific approach or format over another for our entries.

For example, this morning, I didn’t know what to write in our TID 4.1. Seeing that there were two students who already posted their entries, and then after reading and commenting to at least one of their works, I began being more sure and stimulated to accomplish what the course was requiring.

Sometimes, I look at the course requirements and feel overwhelmed. As I write this journal, my classmates in our learning group for this subject are also still in the process of writing their entries. It took me a few hours to finally be sure regarding what to write and how to write it.

After being more stimulated and sure to what is required of us, for me I believe it is easier to put this on schedule and to properly allocate time for this activity among my other responsibilities and endeavors.

As of the moment, I am being a bit more concerned to my schedule because classes would start by first or second week of June and I would be already working more as a teacher compared to my time this summer break.

Vicarious experiences can also help us develop proper time management. I remember reading an email from the teacher either from this subject or the other subject I am enrolled in. She mentioned that she’s glad to see other students who are advanced in one or two modules. For me, that’s a form of verbal praise and if I was that student, I would have felt really good. It made me want to finish my requirements for my on-schedule module at once.

My classmates and I would also be more stimulated to finish our activities in advance or on time if we can see that there is a sort of benefit–perhaps some bonus points–or sort of digital certificate or any other non-expensive (that more probably does not need cash) item, perhaps digital item, that we can use for our professional advancement or to help boost our course engagements.

Also, if we see that there are those who respond at once to our posts with constructive and helpful feedback, I believe we’d be more stimulated to finish our course requirements here.

I understand that not all of us here have the time and hardware needed to accomplish the tasks in this subject at once. However, for people like me who currently has more time this summer break, I feel quite frustrated (although I understand the reason) when I see that I am the first one to post my entries and I couldn’t see another entry I could read and comment on for the next two or three days. It’s quite frustrating when I want to make sure to finish all my tasks already in one or two days. If I’d procrastinate or wait, however, that may be more agonizing because I might see myself unnecessarily cramming desperately to catch up with the deadline.

But to see early posts given constructive feedback at once or to see that when I post early, I’d expect another entry to be there in one or two days, I believe that would be part of the vicarious experiences that would stimulate me further to do my course requirements at once for my subjects here in UPOU.


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