New Adventures

Well, I’ve stepped into the woods. Or jumped in the deep end. Or fallen down the rabbit hole.

I’ve started a Master’s Degree.

This might be one of the last posts I write like this – in my slippers, with my jammies on, without the trepidation of being graded – but I hope not.

I’ve been writing (in one way or another) in digital space since 2001, much longer than I would have guessed at the beginning. I cringe a little to look back at articles I wrote for newsletters and a magazine then (many in Connections, and in one of the first issues of A Needle Pulling Thread) as my writing has grown a lot in the interim. This is a whole new level of writing, and for an audience I’ve never written for.

The only experience I’ve really had with academic writing was 10 years ago, as a Selkirk College student, learning in the classes that I now teach. I read many student papers in APA format (and ones that are emergent in their understanding of formatted academic papers), but have not had to write one myself in a very, very long time.

The program I’m involved in is an online degree in Learning and Technology – two things that I’m very passionate about. Don’t let the ‘online’ part let you think that it’s lightweight, or that it’s a Degree-For-Purchase. There’s a lot of rigor. Our cohort is using the tools we’re learning about as we gain a greater understanding and appreciation for all facets of learning. I’m only wading in to the shallow end at this time. I can sense the deep end and know that it’s unfathomably deep, broad, and complex. I hope I can learn to not just swim, but to SCUBA dive with my oxygen intact.

In the interests of keeping this space a little active over the next (gulp) two years, I’ve added an RSS Feed block to the right-hand side of this page. If you’re interested, you’ll be able to keep tabs on my progress, as all the students in the program are to keep open-source/access blogs as part of our portfolio of work. This will be where I’ll be doing my academic writing…keeping my conversational and colloquialism-filled writing over here in this space. With my study companion, of course.

Oh – and you might have noticed – my last name is Gates. This is a good thing, and a thing that happened in its own time.

My best to all as you go through your own changes.