Can you talk a little bit about yourself and your background?
I have been working in Early Childhood Education in Ireland for over 20 years. Initially I worked in the classrooms but more recently I have been supporting best practice and carrying of professional development training with Early Childhood Educators.
What prompted you to pursue an online programme with University of Exeter? Specifically, why was online appealing to you?
The sector is changing and has moved towards a professionalised workforce. The sector has changed dramatically and I felt there was a need for me to further my education to ensure I was suitably qualified to support the Early Childhood Education Workforce. I am a busy mum of 3 young children and carrying out asynchronous learning allowed me to fit my studies around my work and family life.
What has the experience been like? Was it what you thought it would be like and has it met your expectations?
I absolutely loved the online learning experience. The platform and content was thoroughly engaging. I felt supported by the lecturers. I had check ins at the start of each module from Oliver, my online learning support contact, these check- in’s made me feel like I wasn’t alone and Oliver was always available via email with any queries I had, as were the lecturers.
If you were giving someone who was considering an online course advice, what would it be?
You have to be disciplined and committed. Set time aside each week for your college work. You are assigned tasks each week as well as assignments throughout the module and a suggested timeframe is also given which is really helpful. Engaging in these tasks and assignments support the learning are key to having successful learning and a successful experience. The discussion forums are a great way to build relationships with your online classmates and feel part of a learning community.
Would you recommend the Exeter MA Education programme and if so what aspects of the course do you find appealing?
I would highly recommend the Exeter programme. The content and platform are extremely engaging, you get to (in an online capacity) meet students from around the world working in a wide variety of education settings. The support you will receive, if you ask for it, is there. I cannot fault my experience.
Is there anything you’d like to add or anything you’d like to talk about that we did not touch on?
I think University of Exeter are a forward thinking college in terms of online learning that many other Universities could learn from. Thank you for giving me such a positive experience, and I will look back on my experience with great fondness.