Reflexive summary：Write it at the end of the journey
First impressions of the course:
Before coming to the UK for this course, I never thought that blogging could even be a part of the class, because for me blogging was nearly obsolete by the time I was introduced to the internet, replaced by new social software and media, so when I was reintroduced to blogging I thought, hmmm! It’s kinda interesting, a bit of a renaissance~
In the first session I was put into a group to develop a blog avatar, and because of the language problem, the discussion was very fast, so I didn’t really understand what we needed to do, but then I found out that there really wasn’t anything I needed to do, because our group only needed to develop the requirements for the photo, so after two weeks out together, there wasn’t a very complicated task.
From starting out like a clueless fly on the wall, it gradually dawned on me that I needed to do content for this course, so I started writing my first blog, I chose a topic that was relatively easy and interesting to write about, but I’ve found that topics that are too simple often don’t have anything special to write about, so I’ll be choosing a more in-depth topic for the next semester.
I have experienced many interesting and challenging moments in my blogging classes this term, which have given me a deeper understanding of my academic and writing skills. Lectures and blogging were two key elements of my journey through the course that not only helped me to improve my self-organisation and presentation skills, but also prompted me to think deeply about my academic views and professional development.
Firstly, the format of lectures provided me with a new academic platform that I had never been exposed to in China, and gave me the opportunity to choose and delve deeper into the topics that I was most interested in. As a student from China studying urban design in the UK, I have gained a better understanding of the cutting-edge trends and innovative ideas in the field of global urban design through this process. The lectures inspired my passion for smart cities and sustainable transport, and gave me a deeper understanding of academic discussions in these two fields, which is why I chose these two topics.
Secondly, the platform of blogging has enabled me to develop the habit of thinking and expressing my views on a regular basis. The format of the blog platform not only honed my writing skills, but also prompted me to keep up with new developments in the field of urban design, as I would go to the platform from time to time to see what interesting thematic content people had posted. This regularity made me more conscious of tracking and understanding relevant topics, and laid a solid foundation for my future research and career.
The gains I have made from this course extend beyond my subject knowledge and academic skills to my personal growth and professionalism. I developed stronger critical thinking. In the process of analysing lectures and writing blogs, I learnt to critically consider the strengths and weaknesses of different viewpoints, rather than blindly accepting or rejecting them. This kind of critical thinking is crucial to the urban design profession and has set me up to better cope with complex issues in my future career.
However, I also realised some areas that could be improved. Firstly, sometimes in lectures, due to language issues and a lack of presentation skills, I may not have presented my ideas adequately, perhaps due to a lack of in-depth understanding of the subject matter or a lack of confidence in my own opinions. In the future, I would like to participate more actively in discussions, express my views and gain more inspiration.
From time to time, I travelled by myself on a small train to various different cities in the UK to experience the different charms of each city, and each time I travelled to a different city, I felt an indescribable inner pleasure. It is a feeling of being part of the pulse of the city, as if I am not only an academic pursuer, but also a participant in the grand theatre of urban design.
Photographed by Haojun Sun，2023