Interdisciplinary Study & Stuff

I haven’t blogged for a while, I know.  I’ve just been getting into the general routine, really.  I’m still walking there and back.  It takes about 30 minutes, but I’m enjoying the walk because it gives me some thinking time and helps me unwind at the end of the day.

After the first couple of weeks, I felt very uncomfortable.  I wasn’t sure if I could cope with the intellectual demands or the sheer volume of work required.  However, two weeks on and I think I’ll be ok.  Some people are clearly better than me at grasping the essentials of difficult concepts, but then they haven’t been out of education (as students, obviously!) as long as I have.  And even then, I did my degree with the OU tweny years ago, so it’s not surprising that I’m finding it hard to get back into the groove.

I’m enjoying living on Bee.  I get a weekly recipe box delivery from Riverford which takes care of up to six meals (and I eat everything in those boxes!), I can walk past Sainsburys every day if I need to, I’ve located a coal merchant, and I can find my way back from Ikea without getting lost.  Millie seems happy and has settled in to her new routine, even though I don’t get back until 6.30 three days a week.  I don’t have to leave early on those days though, so it’s not too bad for her.


I’ve got work to do for five modules, but this is one of them – Interdisciplinary Thinking.  I posted this on the group official blog earlier, so I thought I’d put it here as well.

I would like to try and understand why non-male gamers are still subjected to on-line abuse within the gaming environment from the twin disciplines of psychology (specifically feminist psychology and computer science (specifically, network science). For this assignment, I don’t actually have to carry out the research, rather I have to write a report on the specific approach each discipline might take to any problem – to understand the essence of each discipline you might say – and then consider how each might be applied to the topic for consideration.

I can see that this is meant to encourage me to do three things. First of all, to develop a deeper understanding of two separate disciplines; secondly to introduce me to the world of independent research; and finally to help me to discover (or eliminate!) fields of interest. I’ve tried to choose a topic that I find interesting, together with a discipline I’m already a little familiar with together with one about which I know almost nothing, but am going to have to get to grips with.

The subject was prompted by a comment made on twitter by @glinner (Graham Linehan, the writer of, among other things, the brilliant IT Crowd). He had been asked to use the #gamergate tag on twitter, but he refused because of the misogyny within the whole gaming industry. A bit of investigation confirmed that some female journalists writing about video games had been threatened with death (and worse – yes, there is worse than death) simply because, it seems, they had dared to know more and make their greater knowledge known to the wider gaming public. How very dare they.

So far, I’ve got two books to read: Atkinson & Hilgard’s Introduction to Psychology and Computer and Network Organization – An Introduction by Maarten Van Steen and Henk Sips. I suspect that the computer science book will have nothing to say outside of the design of, and mathematics behind, networks. There doesn’t seem to be much out there about network science, but if anyone can suggest something suitably academic, please feel free to do so! Similarly, any suggestions regarding psychology / feminist psychology would also be most welcome.

In Other News

I still haven’t managed to use the campus swimming pool, even though I paid for a whole year’s access to that, and the gym.  Nor have I managed to apply for a student railcard, but I will.  Next week.

The weather’s been a bit rough this week.  A couple of times I nearly lost my balance as Bee moved violently and was yanked back by her ropes.  Of course, this is nothing compared with how things can get.  I can see I’ll be bolting some things down before long.

I went to Ikea today, so I’ll post some new photos soon.

And I’m the oldest in my cohort.  The. Oldest. Sigh.  Still, blazing a trail for older women everywhere…. see my flames! 😀


2 thoughts on “Interdisciplinary Study & Stuff

  1. Jackie Caddy

    The timbre of your writing has changed – sounds like an academic doing that there thinking stuff! Of course it is challenging and probably scary but that’s why people do these crazy things. Bet it feels good to be free and, oh my, I bet you know you are alive don’t you?

    I’m envious because the most intellectual challenge I face right now is how to calculate the size of the panels I need to cut to make a circus tent top cone to fit a hula hoop 32 inches in diameter! (Sewing a hanging canopy tent for a small person.) Took me all day to work it out. Tragic atrophy of a brain.

    I’m in love with education but I’ve always known that what I loved most about it was being educated. So, envious mark 2!

    The boat is looking great. Huge leaps forward.

    Blazing a trail and smoking…



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