Disclaimer: I just want everyone to know that this post was much easier to write than my first one at the start of the semester.
I don’t think I’ve ever put in so much effort to get into a class in all of my years of going to school, especially one that I wasn’t even required to take, as I did to get into this one. Two and half years after my first attempt to get in, I was finally registered for ISYS6621 for my final semester in the part-time MBA program. I was excited to take the class that so many people had recommended, but that excitement was quickly replaced with concern when I logged into Canvas and read the course description…
“Fair warning, this course will be different…”
My initial thought was “different could be a good thing, but also, what does that even mean?”. Well, let me tell you, being different ended up being one of my favorite things about this class. I’ve found that in a majority of classes that I’ve taken, the structure revolves around the professor lecturing the students, PowerPoints that were read from, a lot of reading that I didn’t necessarily care about, and maybe some peer to peer interaction (if we were lucky). This class had its fair share of assigned work, much like any other class, but the amount of input we had into the conversations and topics we discussed as students, far exceeded what I’ve ever experienced in a classroom. The discussions that took place over the course of the semester that stemmed from topics that were posted on Twitter or in regards to readings or videos that we watched for our small groups, were some of my favorite parts of the class. As important as it is to learn from our professor, I believe it is equally as important to learn from our peers. While I wasn’t much of a contributor to the large discussions, it was interesting to hear topics expanded on that we may have scrolled by briefly on Twitter and the views and opinions of others. In all honesty, I wish we had more time in our small groups over the course of the semester because this is an aspect of the class that I found to be extremely valuable. Whether it be watching a TED Talk or reading an article, the conversations that we had stemming from them always proved to be interesting. While we all read or watched the same thing, the way we interpreted them was always slightly different. We all shared our thoughts, but never once was an idea considered ‘wrong’. Our groups were open and honest and always up for some debate, if the opportunity presented itself, and this ultimately made for better understanding.
“It will take a few weeks to figure out what is going on.”
When it comes to this statement, I can honestly say that I didn’t believe it. There was no way that it was going to take that long to acclimated to a class and do well in it. Well, I was wrong. I had never blogged before and my last Twitter post was nearly four years ago, so I wasn’t overly confident in how this was going to go. Now, here we are three months later and I feel like a pro at these things. (I guess that might be a bit of a stretch, so I’ll go with a decent amateur at these things.)
Blogging was an entirely new concept to me when I first started this class, but it soon became one of my favorite parts of it. I enjoyed writing about topics that I thought were interesting and, in some way, meant something to me, but more importantly I enjoyed interacting with others through them. We all have such a wide variety of interests, so it was interesting to see these over the course of the semester in our posts, but it was even more interesting to see the commonalities that many of us had through the comments on any given post.
When it comes to Twitter, I have to admit that I was not happy that this made up such a significant part of the class. This quickly changed when I saw the tweets that were going out with #IS6621. Not only were people sharing news that I hadn’t yet seen or may have missed, but they were also interacting with the things that I may have shared. Much like the blogposts, it was always interesting to see the types of interactions that took place in relation to a tweet.
I’m not going to lie to you and tell you that I’m going to continue blogging now that I’ve met the requirements for this course, because in all honesty, I probably won’t… BUT, I do believe that I will take what I have learned from writing these posts and talk more about the things that I find interesting and innovative. On the other hand, I do believe that I will continue to use Twitter more often. There’s no guarantee that I will be tweeting five times a week and that there will be a #C in there, but I’m sure there will be something from @kegallagher18 at some point in time.
If for some reason someone in the Carroll School of Management, whether it be an undergraduate or grad student, stumbled upon this post and actually made it this far, take ISYS6621 if you haven’t already. It might take a few semesters to be able to register, but figure out a way to get into it.
Yes, this class is different and can take some time to get used to, but trust me, you’ll be happy you took it.