I’ve talked before about the way optional modules in your degree help to tailor your studies to your own interests, but even within each module you have the opportunity to take it exactly where you want.
This term I’ve been studying the ‘Social Movements and Collective Action’, module which truthfully, I hadn’t been sure about before I started, but I have enjoyed this module to the point I’ll happily struggle my way out of bed for a 10am regardless of how much sleep I’ve had. The ‘happily’ part of that is very unlike me.
The module has encompassed learning about much more wider reaching topics than I had anticipated, and I’ve found it fascinating to peel away the fabric of issues which are fundamental aspects of our society, as well as of different cultures and different time periods. We’ve been able to learn about such movements as the Civil Rights Movement, the Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong, the Arab Spring that became synonymous with the Twitter Revolution, to the more local Occupy Movement. And for each, we’ve had the opportunity to delve into some of the fundamental resources and theories that contribute to each, which I feel has given me a much deeper and more thorough understanding of the social movements which have ultimately made society what it is today, and what it may progress into.
More recently, we have had the opportunity to study a social movement of our choice. This was unmarked so it was great to be able to explore the topic exactly to my own interests. Throughout the course of lectures and seminars, I developed a significant interest in the Animal Rights Movement. Being able to study this for the module and then receive feedback and discuss with others from an academic point of view was amazing. Similarly, the topic relates to my dissertation topic, so being able to tailor my studies within the module was especially useful.
Since everyone worked on their own social movement choices, it was also really inspiring to hear the opinions and passions of other students. I’m really leaving this module so much more aware of the world than I came to it and a hundred times more inspired.
I’ve found that learning in this way and about such crucial topics has inspired me so much more to apply what I know to influence real change in the world. I couldn’t really be more excited.