Interview with my students from Period 29 (Part 1)

Period 29 was a great success for my students, as 90% of them passed! I asked some of them to take part in a short interview in order to help and advise other students who are undertaking the OBU degree or are thinking of doing so.

Today I am talking to Xinjing, Varun and Firose.

1. Why did you decide to complete the OBU degree?

Xinjing: I feel it may boost my CV and help with a job hunting purpose.

Varun: I decided to take up the OBU degree because firstly I did not have a degree, and I realized in today’s working world it’s very important to have an undergraduate degree. It is usually one of the first things people ask of you, especially potential employers. The OBU allowed me to obtain one through a relatively easier route along with my ACCA studies.

Firose: Improve my chances to land a good job by having a degree with my ACCA studies as I joined ACCA after my 12th grade.

2. How long did it take you to complete the project (hours per week)?

Xinjing: It took about 20 hours a week at first stages and 15 hours a week at second and third stages.

Varun: In total from the planning stage, it took around 2-3 months to complete the project. The hours per week put into the project varied week-wise. However with good planning and preparation around 10-12 hours per week is sufficient to complete the project.

 I don’t remember exactly but it’s safe to say that I needed time out because of red-eyes (dryness).

3. What areas of the project did you enjoy the most?

Xinjing: I like to analyse the trends of the companies’ financial performance and to find the reasons behind those changes.

Varun: I enjoyed the research process the most. The fact that we had to develop our own research questions and objectives helped ensure I knew exactly what I was working toward, with each mentor meeting providing a great platform to re-assess my progress. The mentor meetings were very helpful and gave me a lot of confidence reaffirming that I was on the right track and my research methodology was proper and my findings were also in line with my objectives and questions.

 Though it was a struggle at first, I realized the advantages later. It got me thinking about different aspects of a company before I invested in the market.

4. Which areas did you struggle with the most with and how did you overcome them?

Xinjing: I was dragged down by the requested research report structures, however, I understood it more clearly after reading it a few more times.

Varun: The areas I struggled with the most were consolidating my research process and trying to reign in my research perspective to the scope required by my research questions. Again the mentor meetings helped me tremendously in this regard. Through the meetings I gained a better understanding of what was relevant and what was not in my research scope. I then effectively made the required changes after discussions with my mentor. I also had difficulties understanding the correct methods of referencing to be used for this project. This issue was clarified promptly by my mentor right at the outset and allowed me to carry on with my project with no more confusion.

 Information gathering from a reliable source. I kept checking the credibility of the website and its authors.

5. What would be the one piece of advice you would give to other students doing the degree?

Xinjing: An experienced and reliable mentor would help students throughout the whole project.

Varun: Pick a topic and area that you are confident in and absolutely sure that you will be able to do the best job that you can. If you ensure it’s a topic/area of particular interest, it’ll be doubly enjoyable for you as well.

 Follow every single line of advice given by OBU in its Information pack. They are very strict about this. Do not think for a second that maybe they wouldn’t notice or maybe they would give a lesser grade.

I would like to thank Xinjing, Varun and Firose for sharing their experience with the OBU degree project.

I hope that many of you have found this interview informative and helpful.