How have your personal beliefs and values influenced your decision to pursue your current course of enrolment?

How have your personal beliefs and values influenced your decision to pursue your current course of enrolment?


Reflective piece on career decision making- Foundations of Professional Health

1) Description
Describe what had led you to enrol in your current course of study at University.
You can also include information about key events, people or information that has led to your current enrolment status.

2) Feelings/ reactions
What were your feelings throughout the process of making the decision to pursue your current course of study at University? This can be both at the time of finalising your decision to apply (eg. when you submitted your application or TISC preferences) and afterwards (any further feelings or reactions you have had).

3) Evaluation
What aspects of making the decision to pursue your current course of enrolment were positive or challenging? What factors (internal or external) made the career decision-making process positive or challenging?

4) Analysis
How have your personal beliefs and values influenced your decision to pursue your current course of enrolment?

5) Personal conclusion
Having reflected on the career decision-making process that led you to choose a degree within the Faculty of Health Sciences at University:
• What aspect/s of the decision-making process could you improve upon, and how can you do this in the future?
• In hindsight, what aspects of the decision-making process would you have done differently (even if the process went smoothly for you and you were accepted into your preferred course option)?
• How has this career decision making experience your approach to future career decisions you may need to make in the future (eg. Preferred specialisation within your discipline, undertaking further study, whether to study part time or full time etc..)

6) Personal action plan
As their will be numerous career decisions that you will need to make throughout your life:
• What do you need to do, learn, or research, to improve your ability to make informed career decisions?
• What steps are you going to take to achieve that?

Example reflection
I applied to study Psychology at University, as I am interested in human behaviour. Having taken Psychology 3A/B in year 12, I enjoyed learning about different psychological theories and how this can be applied in a variety of situations. Whilst I did consider other options related to human behaviour and health such as Social Work and Occupational Therapy, I was confident in making Psychology my first preference as I had spoken to current University students at the University Open Day in 2013 about what they enjoyed about their studies, as well as using the Job Guide and My Future to learn more about where a psychology degree can lead to. Having completed six weeks of semester, so far I feel I have made the right decision.

When I told people that I had chosen Psychology as my first preference, some said that there were too many students studying Psychology, which would make it more difficult to get a job. I found these comments disheartening to hear from others, but I felt confident that Psychology was a good base degree that could lead to a variety of employment or further study options and provided me time to explore different avenues of interest. Confronting these individuals’ less than positive opinions of my course selection was somewhat challenging and I feel they were taken by surprise by the research and consideration I had put into my course selection. My desire to help others with mental health issues, developmental delays or who come from disadvantaged backgrounds is also a key driver for me to pursue psychology.

Prior to commencing my degree, I was not aware of the pathways to achieving registration as a psychologist, which was part of one of my early lectures. Upon reflection, I feel this would have been good to know prior to commencing the degree and I should have should have looked into the requirements for registration through the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and Psychology Board of Australia. I am now aware of the importance of accessing professional associations and discipline-specific career information and how to determine if the information source is credible and reliable. Despite this, I still feel confident psychology is the best option for me, as becoming a psychologist is not a primary goal of mine at this point in time. I have joined the APS as a student member to help develop my knowledge of potential career pathway options as well as enhance my understanding of the profession in the community.
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