How you have approached learning new things and/or finding new information during the semester?
This semester has taught me a surprisingly large range of skills, both technical and not. It has been important that I’ve been open minded when learning new techniques and methods, especially when it comes to design, as a lot of it is vastly different to how I’ve previously been going about things.
Much of the learning I’ve done has been through online tutorials and forums since we have been tackling areas that I’m not familiar with and often had to teach myself. This has been very time consuming, but also very rewarding, as I have learnt how to approach new and unfamiliar topics with very limited guidance. It mostly just involves staying on top of my studies and making the choice to spend the extra time required to excel in these areas.
I have also been able to link studies from other units into this one, such as how I’m currently studying Programming Principles. It was difficult at the start of the semester as I was attempting to program a language that I had never touched before. This became easier over the semester as the skills I had learnt in each of the subjects were able to be transferred to the other one.
What additional, non-technical skills you’ve developed during the semester?
I have had a chance to learn a lot of non-technical skills this semester, mostly focusing on teamwork and social aspects of working in a studio. Managing teamwork requires all of the studio members to pull their weight and complete tasks in a timely manner, as well as providing support to others in areas they aren’t confident in. While the work is marked individually, working as a team and assisting each other yields far better results for everyone than if we only worked for ourselves. This is a skill in itself because it means that each of use much make the choice to spend our own time helping the others, despite it seeming only detrimental to ourselves at that point.
Communication is the other skill that was strongly refined over this semester. It is one thing to talk to someone, it’s another to effectively communicate with them. This class has given me an opportunity to build on my communication skills so that I am able to easily explain my concepts and points of view to the team, as well as provide feedback in a constructive manner.
The most effective strategies you used for managing individual and team activities
Individually, I manages my activities by setting myself goals to reach each week. I found it was incredibly useful to complete each blog post on the week that we worked on it in a team. It took little while to get into the habit of doing this, but by the last cycle, I was able to complete tasks as soon as they were assigned to me, freeing me up from having a large chunk of work to do at the end.
Being up to date with my work also helps me to manage team activities, as completing my work in a timely manner allows the other studio members to have easy access to the information they need. We kept an active group chat going, where we were able to ask each other questions and keep one another in check about their assigned tasks.
The ethical responsibilities associated with working in a team-based environment
Working in a team-based environment always carries an ethical weight where your work no longer just affects you, but also has an impact on the grades of other people. This is portrayed in multiple different ways, such as producing assigned work in a timely manner, creating work of a high quality and overall being a useful person to work with. It requires each person to take responsibility for their share of the work, as well as needing them to have a strong work ethic so that they can be relied upon complete their tasks.
Within those points is also the willingness to work and the level of participation from each studio member. While it is easy to work on the individual aspects, the team also has a responsibility to be easy to work with and fully contribute to all of the group design tasks.