Thursday, 27 August 2009

Reflections of a Masters student

I’m posting the following on behalf of our colleague Durham who is working with ARMMS whilst studying for his Masters degree in Archives and Records Management with CAIS.


I started working for Archive Services at the University of Dundee in 2008 and enrolled on the Centre for Archive and Information Studies’ Masters programme in Archives and Records Management by Distance Learning in September of that year. I’ve completed three courses so far (and my first year on the programme) and have studied topics such as archival theory, access and preservation issues and the ethics of record keeping. I am about to begin my fourth course which is about information legislation such as the Freedom of Information and Data Protection Acts. The past year has seen me having to learn to juggle the pressures of work whilst coping with the demands of study. It’s a challenge I wouldn’t have missed for the world.

Given the way that the programme combines theory and practice, I’ve found working and studying at the same time to be an invaluable experience and one that has been highly beneficial to my personal and professional development. Being able to study theoretical issues and apply them to a working environment has allowed me to not only consolidate my learning but, crucially, place it within a practical context. It is an approach that has directly informed my work based practice and has allowed me to develop working competencies across a range of professional responsibilities including, for example, cataloguing and archival description. I am looking forward to continuing with my studies, further developing my skill set across a range of new subject areas and, at the same time, expanding my understanding of the profession and broadening my awareness of the demands that are placed on those working within the field.

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