Group Blog # 3 – Privacy

Introduction


In this blog entry, we will be exploring the various aspects of internet privacy and the many ways you can keep your personal information safe. With the help of several sources, our group managed to include a few steps and tips that you can take to protect your personal information on the internet, as well as ways you can prevent fraud and identity theft from happening to you. Also included is a list containing a few anti-virus programs that could be used for extra security while you’re browsing the internet. lastly, we will be discussing the risks of social media in the workplace.

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Fraud
noun
1.
Deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage.


What is fraud? The dictionary definition of fraud is the act of deceit, trickery, sharp practice or breach of confidence perpetrated for profit or gain (Evans, 2016). It is estimated that in 2015 alone cyber-crime saw almost 6 million offenses committed (Evans, 2016). Statistics say that you are 20 times more likely to be robbed at your computer than by an offender in another country than held up on the streets (Evans, 2016). Cybercrime can be experienced by any person of any age or social background, in any area of the world (Evans, 2016). Evans notes the four most common forms of cyber-crimes that take place in society today are as following: Phishing; the activity of defrauding an online account holder of financial information by posing as a legitimate company. Identity theft; the fraudulent acquisition and use of a person’s private identifying information, usually for financial gain. Hacking, the use of a computer to gain unauthorized access to data in a system. Lastly, online harassment the act of disturbing or pestering, troubling repeatedly via the computer. It is estimated that 90% of all data records that were used in a cybercrime, was a result of hackers employed by an organized crime (Evans, 2016). As I mentioned previously cybercrime can happen to anyone and there are a few steps you can take to protect yourself from online predators. I’ve listed a few steps below.

Some steps you can take to protect yourself from any form of cyber-crimes as advised by Norton Antivirus Canada are as follows:

Fraud protection tips as listed by Norton antivirus protection 

• Keep your computer current with the latest patches and updates.

• Make sure your computer is configured securely.

• Choose strong passwords and keep them safe.

• Protect your computer with security software.

• Protect your personal information.

• Online offers that look too good to be true usually are.

• Review bank and credit card statements regularly.

A few examples of cyber scams are as follows:


The Nigerian Prince scam, better known as the Nigerian letter scam
Cyber criminals contact planned victims by fax, letter or e-mail. The cyber criminal claims to be a government official or member of a royal family. cyber criminal begins to solicit assistance in transferring large sums of excess money out of Nigeria and reassures the victim that they will pay the victim for their help. The message is always of an “urgent, private” nature (Unknown, 2016).

A guaranteed bank loan or credit card scam


An outstanding preapproved loan is offered to the victim, but, you must pay the “Mandatory” processing fee (Chipurici, 2016)

Greeting Card Scams


The greeting card is sent from cybercriminal posing as victim’s friend. The victim often opens the message thinking it’s a safe message from a friend and instead a ton of malicious software is downloaded and uploaded to your computer. Malware can be anything from constant popups, Random windows all over the screen finally can be ransomware, a financial malware. If the computer is infected. Your computer tends to become a sort of bot part of a larger network of other infected computers. The computer will proceed to transmit private data to the fraudulent server ran by cyber criminals (Chipurici, 2016).

Hitman scams


This type of scam is known as a form of “extortion”. This type of scam may come in various forms of Threatening messages followed by the demand of money or something bad will happen.

Anti-Virus Protection Programs.


Program Name: Program Features: Cost of Program:
Avira Antivirus ·      Secure browser

·      VPN

·      Safe search plugin

 

Free

AVG Antivirus ·      Mobile app

·      100% rating for protection

 

Free

Panda Antivirus ·      98% protection from viruses

·      Scans quickly

 

Free

MacAfee Antivirus plus (2017) ·      Editor Rating: /5

·      Malware scan

·      Website rating

·      Phishing protection

·      Bonus; Vulnerability Scan

 

 

$24.99

Norton Antivirus Basic ·      Editor Rating: /5

·      Malware scan

·      Website rating

·      Phishing protection

 

$19.99

Webroot secure anywhere Antivirus ·      Editor Rating: /5

·      Malware scan

·      Website rating

·      Phishing protection

 

$19.99

Bitdefender Antivirus ·      Editor Rating: /5

·      Malware scan

·      Website rating

·      Phishing protection

·      Bonus; Vulnerability Scan

 

 

 

$25.99

 

Terms of Service Agreements and What You are Really Signing Up For

privacy-policy11


We have all had a time where we were so excited to play a new game or download the latest trending app on our phones, computers, etc., that we didn’t even notice the little button pop up which asks you to agree to the terms and policies of their program. Service agreements are everywhere, in fact, sometimes they are so well hidden you may not even know that you have signed up for one. But what is a privacy policy really, and what are your rights and privileges in regards to them in Canada? “A Privacy Policy is a legal statement that specifies what the business owner does with the personal data collected from users, along with how the data is processed and why.” (Sample Privacy Policy Template, 2016). Over half of online Americans when asked in 2014, did not even know what a Privacy Policy was (Thompson, 2015). They were originally meant for the customers of the services to protect their rights, but have now turned into agreements for the companies themselves. Now more than ever these corporations such as Facebook, and Google, have access to more of our personal information than people may realize (Thompson, 2015). There is a law in place in Canada that protects the online information of its citizens, its called the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act or the PIPEDA (The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA), 2016). Basically, this law limits how much of your information can be used by the different companies that you have contact with online. It is important to look this over and see what your rights are and how to properly protect yourself in the online world. A study done by two researchers at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania showed that if you were to read every privacy policy you encountered in a year it would take you 76 work days to do so (Madrigal, 2012). So, if this is the case, how are we supposed to know what we are signing up for without reading everything that shows up on a company’s policy? Here is  a list of just a  couple of steps you can take to protect yourself:

  • Be aware of who you share your information with

By limiting the information, you share on online profiles you can reduce the chances of the wrong person getting a hold of it. Everyone that needs to know those things about you should already, giving you no need to have to update it. Also, don’t give out personal information on the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you’ve initiated the contact or know who you’re dealing with. If you see a privacy policy or don’t see one, and don’t understand what it says when skimming over it consider going elsewhere (Consumer Information, 2016).

  • Password Protection

If possible, do not tell anyone passwords to sources that can have access to your personal information. Be creative when coming up with passwords and try not to make them easy for people to guess. Password protect anything and everything you can! This limits the number of people who are able to see all your important and personal information (Consumer Information, 2016).

  • Turn on Private Browsing

Private browsing is available through the internet search bar. It allows you to search for websites and do all the same things you would normally do on the internet, but without having to worry about it saving your files. This prevents websites from being able to save and use your online data.  It deletes cookies, temporary Internet files and browsing history after you close the window (DesMarais, 2014)


How Your Internet Profile Can Affect You Chances at Getting a Job

Social media is a place where people can share photos, comment on photos and view anyone’s information. Your digital footprint is everything that represents you online. It’s defined as, the information about a particular person that exists on the Internet as a result of their online activity (Oxford Dictionaries, 2016). This digital footprint can alter your chances of landing your dream job or any job for that matter. The job market these days is not what it used to be; it can be nearly impossible and frustrating to land a decent job (Arnald-smeets, 2014). For the lucky candidates that land a job or get an interview, it is vital not to mess up (Arnald-smeets, 2014). One way to increase your chances of getting a decent job is to clean up your social media profiles so that the potential employer, doesn’t come across anything that can question whether you are fit for the job (Arnald-smeets, 2014). There are several ways that you can change your digital footprint so that it doesn’t damage your reputation and the possibilities of future employment opportunities (Oxford Dictionaries, 2016). Here’s how:

Delete: Go on to all your social media profiles and hide or erase anything that can alter your chances of getting a job. This can be anything from inappropriate pictures, comments, and bad language (Arnald-smeets, 2014). When doing this process, use your judgment to determine if what’s on your profile will chance someone’s perspective of you.

Privacy: Make everything private, this only allows certain people to view your profiles. Many social sites today have the options to make things private to make it hard for potential employers to view your social media (Arnald-smeets, 2014).

Restricted: Create a restricted list of people you don’t want seeing your posts. With a restricted list, people can see your profile but they cannot view any content or photos that you have on social media (Arnald-smeets, 2014).

Adding friends: Don’t accept friends that are connected or a part of your potential social employer. This can compromise your possibilities of getting a job offer (Arnald-smeets, 2014).

Grow up: If you are old enough for the job, then you are probably old enough to look mature online. Looking cool online is a thing of the past and future employers are not looking for a person that is “cool” but more so mature and can handle a job that is given to them (Arnald-smeets, 2014).

When it comes to getting a job, many people forget about their image on the Internet and who can see these profiles. You may get an interview and it may go well but if you’re social media says something else about you, this can change your future employers perspective of you and prevent you from getting that job. So just remember when you are applying for jobs, that not only does your resume and personality matter, but so does your reputation on social media.


How to Better Protect your Privacy Online

Now more than ever it’s extremely important to be aware of the dangers online, and how to properly protect yourself. In this day and age, there are increasing threats to our online privacy and personal information, putting an extra emphasis on being internet savvy.

To start off, an easy way to protect yourself from viruses online is to install an anti-virus software, most you can find free on the internet. These software’s help to ensure that your computer is protected from torrent websites, and potentially harmful viruses. They do this by performing scans which search your system for any threats, and then remove them to prevent any harm to your computer. Some examples of credible software’s include: Malwarebytes Anti-Malware, McAfee Anti-Virus, & Symantec Norton Anti-Virus (according to PCMag.com)

Secondly, when performing Google searches, try using a different search engine that filters out harmful websites, as well as not collecting your search information. When you search for something, your search terms are sent to the site that you clicked on, therefore sharing your personal information. As well, when you visit any website, your computer automatically sends information (ie. your IP address) which can be used to identify you directly. Sites like Norton Safe Search & DuckDuckGo prevent any search leakage & identify malicious websites.

Another way you can protect your personal information is to block third-party “cookies”, which allow advertising companies to track your browsing habits. With this information, they are then able to build an online “profile” of you and your typical searches, making for targeted advertisements on future sites that you visit. Most internet browser applications have the option to turn off cookies and keep your browsing history, and personal information safe.

An extremely important, arguably the most important way to keep yourself safe online is to ensure that you are not sharing your geographical information online, or at least only with websites you know you can trust. Some websites require this information (ie. Google maps or online shopping), but it is always recommended to turn it off when not needed. This information can be stored in large databases and used by companies to offer specific services and place targeted advertisements (Brunner, 2016). Essentially, you are broadcasting your IP address, which can be used to identify you.

Some quick tips:

  • Always make sure you trust a company before giving out your email address
  • Be cautious when opening attachments from unknown senders
  • Block cookies when they are not required by the site
  • Do not use the same password for multiple accounts, always make them unique and strong
  • NEVER reply to spam emails or messages, they will only lead to trouble
  • Be careful how much information you share on social media sites, just include enough so your friends are able to identify you
  • Always make sure your anti-virus services are up to date

In Summary there are many steps you can take to protect your information on the internet. Keep in mind employers always check your social media networks, and there are many kinds of online scams that can happen to you if you are not careful. We can’t stress enough INTERNET SAFETY IS IMPORTANT. We’ve listed anti-virus software programs and prices as well as Steps to protect your information.

 

References 

Arnald-smeets, L. (2014). 5 Ways to Clean up Your Online Profiles During a Job Search. Retrieved December 10, 2016, from http://www.payscale.com/career-news/2013/06/5-ways-to-clean-up-your-online-profiles-during-a-job-search

Brunner, G. (2016, August 1). 19 ways to stay anonymous and protect your online privacy. Retrieved December 10, 2016, from https://www.extremetech.com/internet/180485-the-ultimate-guide-to-staying-anonymous-and-protecting-your-privacy-online

CHIPURICI, C. (2016, May 28). Top Online Scams Used by Cyber Criminals to Trick You [Updated]. Retrieved November 23, 2016, from https://heimdalsecurity.com/blog/top-online-scams/

DesMarais, C. (2014, July 24). 11 Simple Ways to Protect Your Privacy | TIME.com. Retrieved December 08, 2016, from http://techland.time.com/2013/07/24/11-simple-ways-to-protect-your-privacy/

Evans, M. (2016, July 21). Cyber-crime: One in 10 people now victim of fraud or online offences, figures show. Retrieved November 23, 2016, from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/07/21/one-in-people-now-victims-of-cyber-crime/

Madrigal, A. C. (2012, March 1). Reading the Privacy Policies You Encounter in a Year Would Take 76 Work Days. Retrieved December 08, 2016, from http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/03/reading-the-privacy-policies-you-encounter-in-a-year-would-take-76-work-days/253851/

Oxford Dictionaries – Dictionary, Thesaurus, & Grammar. (2016). Retrieved December                  10, 2016, from https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/

Thompson, C. (2015). What you’re giving away for ‘free’ social media. Retrieved December 08, 2016, from http://www.cnbc.com/2015/05/20/what-you-really-sign-up-for-when-you-use-social-media.html

Rubenking, N. J. (n.d.). The Best Antivirus Protection of 2016. Retrieved December 10, 2016, from http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2372364,00.asp

(n.d.). Cybercrime – Cybercrime Prevention Tips | Norton Canada. Retrieved November 23, 2016, from http://ca.norton.com/cybercrime-prevention/

Consumer Information. (2012, July). Retrieved December 08, 2016, from https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0272-how-keep-your-personal-information-secure(n.d.). DuckDuckGo Privacy. Retrieved December 10, 2016, from https://duckduckgo.com/privacy

The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA). (2016). Retrieved December 08, 2016, from https://www.priv.gc.ca/en/privacy-topics/privacy-laws-in-canada/the-personal-information-protection-and-electronic-documents-act-pipeda/

(n.d.). The Nigerian Prince: Old Scam, New Twist. Retrieved November 23, 2016, from https://www.bbb.org/new-york-city/get-consumer-help/articles/the-nigerian-prince-old-scam-new-twist/

(n.d.). Online Privacy: Using the Internet Safely. Retrieved December 10, 2016, from https://www.privacyrights.org/consumer-guides/online-privacy-using-internet-safely

Sample Privacy Policy Template. (2016). Retrieved December 08, 2016, from https://termsfeed.com/blog/sample-privacy-policy-template/

(2012). What kind of information is being collected about me when I’m online? Retrieved December 10, 2016, from https://www.priv.gc.ca/en/about-the-opc/what-we-do/awareness-campaigns-and-events/privacy-education-for-kids/fs-fi/choice-choix/

 

 

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Group Blog # 2 – Employability Skills

Introduction

When it comes to the topic of employability skills it’s hard to have one general idea in mind. As a group, we narrowed down what we thought were the most important and successful parts. Starting off with time management and how you can properly prepare for that dream job, to making that first impression in your interview. Leading on to how to focus on the proper goals and values in your life to better your own personal well-being at home. Lastly, there’s that one question everyone asks, how to work effectively in a team environment? We have an answer, and if you follow these steps we guarantee your employability skills will be much more efficient in the end.  

Goals
What Are Goals?

Dictionary Definition: The object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.

Not only is setting goals important in your personal life. Setting goals is important in your professional life. S.M.A.R.T goal setting is an abbreviation for the phrase “Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-based”. Setting goals aids in motivating yourself in completing tasks in a timely fashion. There are two types of goals; long term and short term goals. Starting small with goals in your personal life gives practice and basic knowledge of goal setting that can aid in setting goals in a professional setting later.

A Few small things you can do to practice goal setting in your personal life.

  1. Create a daily to-do list.
  2. Finish tasks on daily to do list.
  3. Set health goals.
  4. Create spiritual goals for yourself.
  5. Plan everything in advance.
  6. Distinguish between short and long term goals you desire to achieve

Working in a Team:

No matter what your job is, chances are at some point you’ll be required to work with other people, as a team. Being able to be an effective and helpful team member is an essential skill that is highly recommended you develop. When you are able to work efficiently independently as well as in a group setting, it shows diversity and flexibility. It is quite an adjustment from being able to make a plan of action for yourself versus a group of people, so here are some tips to make the transition as smooth as possible.

Divide Up the Task

  • If you can assign each member of the group a specific job, it will be a lot easier to make sure that everything gets done, and that there are no overlaps with parts of the task.
  • Try giving each group member a role, so that each person has something that they are in charge of looking over. For example – Editor, Coordinator or Research Leader.

Communicate

  • Effective and open communication is key to a group dynamic; each group member should be included and up to date on the progress of the task
  • Ask for clarification – your group members are there for a reason. They would be more than happy to help assist you if you’re having difficulties.

Get Creative

  • When brainstorming with a group of people, there is the opportunity for new fresh ideas, and perspectives you may not have considered before.
  • Make sure to acknowledge everyone’s input, and not turn it down before careful consideration
  • Recognize strengths and weaknesses within the group, and appropriately plan

Give Feedback

  • If you are open and honest with constructive criticism, it will not only help the person to better perform their task, but it will benefit the group overall as well
  • If there is a conflict within the group, always recognize it and try to resolve it as soon as possible. The situation will only grow and become worse if left alone.

Respect

  • Working closely with others give you the opportunity to see another way of doing things, and it’s important to respect other people’s values, beliefs, and opinions
  • Always support and encourage your team members, treat them as you would wish to be treated

Set Goals

  • As a group, set goals along the way to completing your final task, it will keep group members on track and motivated
  • When you reach your goals, it will help to further bond the group, as it takes everyone’s participation to get there

Workplace Values

Having workplace values are one of the most important segments in being successful. Being able to problem solve and lead your coworkers. Conducting yourself in a professional manner as well as being a team player. All listed skills are great skills to have in order to be an asset to any company you apply for a position with.

Values: Examples:
Accountability
  • Being responsible for his or her actions in the workplace
  • Owning up to your mistakes versus blaming a co-worker.
Respect
  • Important to respect your coworkers also equally important to respect yourself in the workplace.
  • Treating others how you’d want to be treated is a key to being successful in the workplace.
  • Accepting all coworkers regardless of differences.
Integrity
  • Following the moral or ethical set in place in the workplace.
  • Doing right in all situations.
  • Being true to yourself.
  • Taking pride in your work.
Diligence
  • Persistent, hard working, and careful employee
Perseverance
  • A steady and consistent employee no matter how difficult task at hand seems.
Discipline
  • An employee that behaves in a manner that obeys rules
Collaboration
  • Able to contribute ideas and work well with co-workers.
  • Team player
Conduct
  • Personal behavior in the place.
  • Being able to manage yourself. (Time management also critical to success)
  • Ability to lead coworkers.

Acing That First Impression

In today’s busy world finding a job can be a long, grueling, and  difficult process. Employers of today have a large pool of highly educated candidates to pick from. They use simple but effective tools to select the perfect person or people that are most fit for the job. Having a strong resume is important at displaying your education and knowledge but lacking interview skills can limit the candidate’s chance altogether. Remember, your interview starts the moment you walk into the room so let us look at some ways we can improve interviewing skills.

 “Like it or not, you are being judged by how you look, how you dress, and how you carry yourself—and, if you’re lucky, how you do your job”(Kissel,2013). It’s unfortunate that your skills can be looked over by someone having a nicer haircut, or because you had a stain on your tie, but first impressions count. Luckily there are simple ways on how to turn a nerve wrecking experience into a simple and successful interview.

Smile: When you walk into an interview a smile can make a person appear more attractive, sociable and confident (Harris,2015). It is known that people who smile more during an interview look confident, and are more likely to be hired. Looking grumpy or sad will instantly get your potential employer a negative reaction to your personality (Harris,2015).

Strong HandshakeA strong firm handshake tells your employer that you are confident, social and a professional (Harris,2015). If your handshake is too strong or too week this can show a lack of confidence in yourself or you are over confident (Harris,2015).

Body Language: Body language shows that you are confident and competent in what you are discussing with your future employer. You want to sit straight upright your feet planted firmly on the floor with your arms at your sides (Harris,2015). Never cross your arms, this can give your future employer the thought that you are uncomfortable or hiding something from your conversation. Keep eye contact when appropriate, especially when talking to your future boss. Without eye contact, they might feel that you are uncomfortable or that you have no interest in being there (Harris,2015).

Positivity: Be positive in your interview. Turn your discussion into a pleasant one because an employer is more likely to hire someone whose company they enjoy (Harris,2015). Be sure to ask questions and be engaged in discussions. Confidence can make you feel more self-fulfilled and make you more confident in your interview (Harris,2015).

Energy: Show energy in your interview (Harris,2015). If you looking excited and energetic give your future employer the idea that you are really looking forward to this position and you will give it 100%. By doing this you will give the right first impression (Harris,2015).

First impressions are important in an interview. From the moment you walk in the door with a smile to the end of the interview where you give a firm confident handshake, your employer is evaluating you. Just remember, when you take those first steps into your next interview, your employer is not only looking for a great personality but also how you present yourself to them and others around you.

 Time management

imag6370_2

          Time management is an important quality to have when applying for a job and to keep that job once you are hired. Sometimes time is the deciding factor in the workplace when it comes to deadlines and even just applying for a job at the perfect moment. Here are a few steps that you can take to hopefully help you in some way to achieve this.

  1. When looking for a job it’s important to continuously check job boards and job listings for the most recent updates. Being the first person to show up at the location with your resume or the first to apply online, will make a good impression and create a higher chance of employability. 
  2. Once you have a job it is important to realize that no matter how much you procrastinate or put a deadline of the due date will eventually come. There is a Chinese proverb that says “no amount of gold will buy you time once it has passed.” (Siang, 2006). This means that the more time you waste there will be less time to be successful. Don’t forget that just because you got the job doesn’t mean you can’t lose it to.   
  3. Realizing which projects are more important than others and prioritizing is a key tip to remember (Siang, 2006). Try to divide things up into categories, what is most important that needs to be finished first? What task comes second to that? What you can do later, and what is something that you can scratch off the list altogether if possible?
  4. Having a daily planner, an agenda or some form of note system can help you stay up to date on tasks and is a great way to always stay on schedule(Siang,2006). Here you can write down all the important dates for deadlines, meetings, doctors appointments and more. This can also help you plan your vacation time and or to book time off for important events that you may have planned in the future.
  5. Mental health and overall health is also a big factor when thinking about time management. Remember to try to eat healthy foods, stay hydrated, exercise and get plenty of sleep (Siang,2006). You must take care of yourself first before you can be successful in your daily activities.

 

Conclusion:

In summary, if one follows the given material, success in finding a job will come easily to them. Keep in mind that when meeting with a potential employer for the first time, first impressions are very important and crucial to furthering your career. Secondly setting goals and having workplace values will  guide you in succeeding in the workplace. Finally, Time management skills will aid in keeping your job and staying organized and keeping on top of tasks.

 

 

Bibliography

Amico, S. (n.d.). Workplace Values & Ethics. Retrieved November 04, 2016, from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/workplace-values-ethics-4887.html

Dilenschneider, R. L. (n.d.). 5 Core Values for the Workplace. Retrieved November 04, 2016, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-l-dilenschneider/business-advice_b_3829655.html

Dogra, A. (n.d.). These Personal Goal Examples Will Help You Prioritize Right. Retrieved November 04, 2016, from http://www.buzzle.com/articles/personal-goals-examples.html

Gregory, A. (n.d.). Here Are Some Business Goals That Follow the SMART Criteria. Retrieved November 04, 2016, from https://www.thebalance.com/smart-goal-examples-2951827

Harris, P. (2015, October 16). Four things employers decide about you in four seconds. Retrieved November 12, 2016, from http://careers.workopolis.com/advice/first-impressions-four-things-employers-decide-about-you-in-four-seconds/

Kissel, T. (2013, March 20). You are judged by your appearance. Retrieved November 13, 2016, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/tykiisel/2013/03/20/you-are-judged-by-your-appearance/#285ff1f30f0c

Siang, L. Y. (2006, March 30). The importance of Time Management for Career Success. Retrieved November 06, 2016, from http://www.career-success-for-newbies.com/importance-of-time-management.html

The, B. (n.d.). Understanding Workplace Values: Finding the Best Cultural Fit. Retrieved November 04, 2016, from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/understanding-workplace-values.htm

University of Wisconsin-Greenbay. (2006, February 7). Managing Time for Success in College. Retrieved November 06, 2016, from https://www.uwgb.edu/tutoring/resources/managing.asp

(n.d.). Personal Goal Setting: Planning to Live Your Life Your Way. Retrieved November 04, 2016, from https://www.mindtools.com/page6.html

U. (2011, July 11). Back to School – College & University – Effective Time Management for Mental Health. Retrieved November 15, 2016, from http://www.cbc.ca/backtoschool/2011/07/effective-time-management-for-mental-health.html

U. (n.d.). Effective Team-Working Skills. Retrieved November 17, 2016, from http://www.skillsyouneed.com/ips/team-working.html

U. (2015, September 08). Working with others tip sheet. Retrieved November 17, 2016, from http://www.esdc.gc.ca/en/essential_skills/tools/wwo_tip_sheet.page

 

Group Members

Chelsey Wilson

Diamond Fortier

Jason Newbold

Kirby Silverthorn

 

Group Blog #1- Academic Skills

Group Members:

Chelsey Wilson

Diamond Fortier

Kirby Silverthorn

Jason Newbold

 

Have you ever heard of the saying, “Don’t study hard, study smart”? This is very important theory when it comes to putting together study strategies. Having a clear idea on where, when, and how you will study, is a great tool to have. These ideas we will be presenting to you, will help you to manage your time more effectively while studying, help you to retain as much information as you can for tests or exams, and how to have a healthy lifestyle that will make you feel great as well!

Methods of Studying

There has been a lot of research about which methods of studying is the best for us. Of course everyone learns differently and these wont apply to every single person. Researchers from Kent State University found that in general, practice testing and distributed practice were the best forms of studying (Grohol, 2013). To help with practice testing, next time your teacher assigns readings don’t skip over the quiz’s at the end of the chapters. Instead do them, and write down what you remember, as well as key terms you think might help you. Chances are, some of the questions in the quiz sections will more than likely be on a test or exam, and this will help you be more prepared. This leads us to distributed practice (Grohol, 2013). Along with your notes from class, you will now have the notes from your quiz’s that you will be able to look over. The best thing to do is to not cram a study session in the night before your exam or test. Instead, take at least an hour every day to go over your notes, re-write important material, and re-read certain sections of your assigned readings for that week. This will also leave room to ask your teacher any questions you may have about any of the content. Studying requires time and effort which not everyone is willing to put in, but if you want to be successful I promise you it is definitely worth it.

Edgar Dale and the Learning Pyramid

The learning pyramid is a tool developed to break down the different ways of learning. These modes of learning are broken up into six categories, each represented by different percentages. There have been different variations of the categories over time but these are the main points. Starting at the top, we have reading 10%, audio visual 20%, demonstration 30%, discussion group 50%, practice by doing 75%, and teaching others at 90%. Edgar Dale, who was an expert in audio-visual education, created the original cone or “pyramid” in 1946 (Acrlguest,2014). Over the years his cone became a pyramid and took on percentages to describe learning retention. This example for learning has been taught over the years as being a definite method on how people receive the information placed before them (Acrlguest,2014). We believe the learning pyramid has some flaws that may have been over looked when it comes to learning strategies.

When it comes to learning everybody has different methods of retaining the content they are taking in. Edgar Dale did not originally intend for the pyramid to have the effect on people that it did. He had originally made it as a reference to the different styles that people learn, and he had stated that the percentages were not at all accurate (Acrlguest,2014). For example, to make a claim that an individual only remembers 30% of what they see, means that we wouldn’t remember this pyramid, and it wouldn’t have any affect on how people retain knowledge. Although the learning pyramid does display all the ways humans learn, the order and percentages will be different for each individual, based on the subject and learning requirements they have.imag5676

How do eating habits affect your study habits?

Your eating habits affect your ability to concentrate and absorb information. Your brain cannot function without proper nutrition.  A lot of refined carbs result in feeling lethargic and sleepy (Lewin, 2016). Refined carbs are the “bad” carbs such as white bread, pasta, forms of sugar and starches that don’t exist in nature (Ede, 2016).  Next time you make a sandwich try using whole wheat bread as an alternative to white bread. Grab some carrots verses a bag of chips.  Eating habits effect your overall health and ability to participate in not just school tasks but day to day life as well. Having good eating habits will lead to overall good health and should result in helping you get better grades (Unknown, 2016).

 

Type of Food brain foods:

Benefits of Listed Brain Foods:
1.        Fish

 

-Omega-3 Fatty Acids found in most fish.

-Omega-3 Fatty Acids essential for proper neuron function.

-Fish is high in fatty acids aids in focusing better.

-Eating fish regularly can reduce risk of dementia as we age.

2.        Nuts

 

-Almonds, Pistachios, and walnuts contain high levels of fatty acids.

-Aids brain in performing optimally.

-Nuts contain Iron, which provides oxygen to the brain. Increases mental alertness and ability to retain information.

-Minimum of one ounce of nuts a day recommended for optimal brain health.

-High in unsaturated fats and calories.

3.        Whole grains

 

-Refined carbs (white bread and pasta) lead to sleepiness, lethargy and mental dullness.

-Have opposite effect of refined carbs

-Enhance memory function.

4.        Apples -Peel of apple contains antioxidant called Quercetin

-Quercetin enhances memory function.

5.        Cruciferous Vegetables -Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Brussel Sprouts and Bok Choy.

-Medical school reveled these types of vegetables had the most positive effect on memory retention

-Eating Vegetables raw is the best way to get nutritional benefits.

6.        Dark Chocolate -Helps brain with memory.

-Increases blood flow to the brain. (Increasing alertness and clarity)

-The darker the chocolate the better.

7.        Spinach -Proven to boost brain power

-Full of Folic Acid

-Shown to reverse memory loss.

8.        Berries -Berries: Blueberries, Cherries, Black Currants, Raspberries, Cranberries, Blackberries, Gooseberries and sometimes grapes.

-Contain Phytonutrients: Antioxidant’s that improve blood flow to the brain.

-Enhance Neural activity.

9.        Legumes -Beans: Chickpeas, Kidney beans and Lentils.

-Substantial amount of protein

-High concentration of folic acid (Improves Ability to recall information)

10.     Onions -Eastern Cultures onions have been long revered for their ability to improve memory and focus

-Compounds in onions: Anthocyanin and Quercetin.(Help prevent Alzheimer’s Disease.)

 

How to Get the Most Out of Studying

There are many different ways to effectively study, but what about the most efficient ways to study? Make the most out of your study sessions by following these simple tips & tricks that are sure to get you an A!

Timing: There are benefits to studying both during the day and at night, it’s all about finding the best method for you and sticking to a schedule. If you find you are more awake and focused during the day, then set out a specified “study time” each day that is devoted to reviewing and revising notes. Same goes for the evening studier, just make sure that your study space is fully equipped with proper lighting and try to eliminate distractions. Benefits of studying during the daytime include – having more energy, which is more likely to result in a higher ability to concentrate (Santos, 2016). Benefits to studying at night include- increased peace & quiet time as most people are more active during the day, less busy public study spots, and a possible increase in your creativity as you see things differently at night.

Solo vs. Group: Most students tend to work best alone, however there are significant benefits to studying with a partner or group as well. One of the benefits of studying with a group is that you have access to knowledge from other students. Study groups can also help you to stay motivated and commit more time to your studying (University of Guelph, 2016). They also allow you to have multiple people available to quiz you on the material. Solo studying can be beneficial because you’re able to create your own active study plan, and pace yourself according to your comfort level with the material. It is also more flexible, since you don’t need to coordinate with others, and you’re able to study whenever you have free time to do so.

Location: When it comes to your study spot, there are many options to choose from. Some students find too many distractions studying in their own space (i.e. Bed), while others thrive in this environment. Once you can establish what works for you, staying focused on your studies will become much easier. Public places devoted to being a learning environment for students (i.e. Library) are a good option, as well as a change of scenery for students looking for an alternative to their bedrooms or dorms. There are other tools available to minimize distractions no matter where you study. For example, StayFocusd, (Unknown, 2016) is an extension for your browser which restricts you from accessing social media sites (i.e. Facebook, Twitter), for a certain amount of time which is set by you.

Length of Study: Studying for too long without a break can actually be counter-intuitive, by overloading your brain without allowing it proper time to process the information. The best method is to study for 45-50 mins, with a 10-15 min break in between sessions (Cernovich, 2016). It’s best to do something completely different such as talking a short walk, sending a few emails, or preparing a snack. It’s also essential to your comprehension of new material to allow your brain a good night’s sleep. This is when your brain subconsciously reviews all the information absorbed during the previous day. Without a proper 7-8 hours of sleep (as recommended for young adults still developing), it is less likely that the hours you spend studying will be properly committed to memory.

References:

Grohol, J. M. (2013). 2 Important Strategies for Effective Studying | World of Psychology. Retrieved October 09, 2016, from http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/02/08/2-important-strategies-for-effective-studying/

ACRLog. (n.d.). Retrieved October 10, 2016, from http://acrlog.org/tag/learning-theories/

By eating right, you’ll be more likely to remain alert, focused, and energized while you study. So, if you really want to know how to study properly and retain more information than ever before, start feeding your body and your brain the foods they crave. (n.d.). Top 10 Brain Foods that Help You Study and Get Better Grades. Retrieved October 10, 2016, from http://www.campustalkblog.com/top-10-brain-foods-that-help-you-study-and-get-better-grades/

By Jo Lewin – Associate nutritionist. (n.d.). 10 foods to boost your brainpower. Retrieved October 09, 2016, from http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/10-foods-boost-your-brainpower

Ede, G. (n.d.). Refined carbohydrate list – Diagnosis:Diet. Retrieved October 10, 2016, from http://www.diagnosisdiet.com/refined-carbohydrate-list/

Santos, B. D. (2016). What is the Best Time to Study? Day vs Night. Retrieved October 08, 2016, from https://www.goconqr.com/en/examtime/blog/best-time-to-study/

A Guide to University Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved October 08, 2016, from http://www.learningcommons.uoguelph.ca/guides/university_learning/accessibility/studying.html#_Toc229765226

Cernovich, M. (2015, July 13). How to Study and Learn New Information. Retrieved October 08, 2016, from http://www.dangerandplay.com/2015/07/13/how-to-study-and-improve-your-memory-and-sleep/

Top 3 extensions for blocking websites and disctractions (Chrome) | TopAlternatives. (2016, January 22). Retrieved October 08, 2016, from https://topalternatives.com/google-chrome-extensions-that-help-block-time-wasting-websites/