The Self Directed Learning Plan (SDLP) is a process and document to chronicle your accomplishments and learning steps through the Master’s program and beyond as they relate to your professional goals. The SDLP will help you to identify and target the array of competencies you need to reach your professional objectives and to help you organize your Kaplan Master’s learning experience to suit your career objectives.
The SDLP will be a section of your Program Portfolio, so take some quality introspective time to consider strengths and areas of development relevant to your career objectives. We encourage you to contact Career Services for feedback on relevant competencies for your career goal, as well as other insights.
By knowing your strengths and areas to develop, you can begin a plan to find out what you need to do to achieve your career goals. We encourage you to continue to reflect on the identified areas throughout the Master’s program. If you feel strength or development area is no longer relevant, you may add another to take its place. At any time, you may also add additional areas.
SECTION 1: STRENGTHS TO LEVERAGE
Step 1a: The most effective and satisfied people align their work with their natural strong points. Identify 3-5 of your key strengths; these could be a competency, skill, ability, knowledge area or personal characteristic. Think about how you can leverage those strengths to be effective in your work, achieve your professional goals, and become a leader in your profession. Your strengths to leverage are the competencies in which you excel, that motivate you, and are required by your professional objective. Your Insights Profile also is a data source.
Step 1b: At the beginning of each course in your Master’s program, answer the following question either using this template: What do you expect to learn in this course that will help you leverage your strengths? Be as specific as you can, e.g., assume that strength is your analytical ability. You might expect to understand more about macroeconomics so that you can analyze how the housing crisis affects other segments of the economy, such as interest rates or unemployment. At the beginning of the course you are not expected to be an expert in all facets of the course learning; however, you can glean valuable insights from the course description or purpose, course and unit outcomes, and from unit themes.
Step 1c: At the end of each course, answer the following questions either using this template. Did you learn what you expected to learn? Was there information or insights that helped you that you didn’t expect to learn at the outset of the course? For example, not only did you learn about macroeconomics, but you learned some software tools that help in conducting an economic analysis. What changes or additions, if any, will you make to your SDLP based on learning in this course?
SECTION II: AREAS TO DEVELOP
Step 2a: We all have strengths, but we also have areas on which we need to improve. As related to your career goal, identify 3-5 areas to develop; these could be a competency, skill, ability, knowledge area or personal characteristic. Think about how you can improve in these areas so that you can achieve your professional goals and become a leader in your profession.
Step 2b: At the beginning of each course answer the following question either using this template or a narrative format. What do you expect to learn in this course that will help you to develop in the identified area?
Step 2c: At the end of each course answer the following questions either using this template or a narrative format. Did you learn what you expected to learn? Was there information or insights that helped you that you didn’t expect to learn at the outset of the course? What changes or additions, if any, will you make to your SDLP based on learning in this course?
SECTION III: JOURNAL ENTRIES
A place to record reflective comments about each unit’s learning.
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