When asked to write a user narrative for the OpenStudy blog, I took a look at what other users had to say about their own OS experience. I discovered that theOpenStudy community enhanced the lives of several people of all different backgrounds, whether they were ambitious, enthusiastic high schoolers overcoming a speed bump in pursuit of their dreams or older academics who are returning to school to pursuit past dreams put on hold. This was a very exciting realization. Not only is OpenStudy a great place to learn, but it helps make dreams come true. How awesome is that?! It is for this very reason that I log-in to OpenStudy whenever I can.
I want to make two points about why I am such fan of OpenStudy. I’ve always had a knack for learning. Things just seem to click for me. My friends noticed this as they were always coming to me for help. When I helped them, I discovered that I had another talent, teaching. It’s a great feeling when that lightbulb goes off and when you have helped someone. OpenStudy lets me grow as a teacher, even though I am not a teaching assistant or a tutor at my college.
OpenStudy is such a great community because people who are passionate about teaching are able to interact with people who are passionate about learning. It is also a community which breaks down so many barriers. People from different countries, different backgrounds, and different areas of expertise are able to collaborate in real time. Theoretical physicists and practical engineers, for example, are able to tackle a question in such a manner that the asker is allowed to understand the nitty, gritty equations and basic fundamentals of the problem. At the same time, they are able to gain some insight on how this knowledge can be used in real world situations.
This is the second reason I find OpenStudy uniquely helpful. All students wonder is what they learn will be used in real life. I often see questions like, “will I ever use Algebra in the real world?” Now with real practitioners answering questions on the site, it is great because it gives askers something tangible. And when you have something tangible it adds a sense of purpose to a student’s studies. I have never experienced this sort of relevance and context anywhere else. As you can imagine, for an engineering student like me, the real world is very important. Here on OpenStudy, we have engineers working in companies who drop in to talk to us students about how they are using what we study in their work. This is what makes me such a fan of OpenStudy.
Thank you OpenStudy for creating a great community where I can actively pursue my passions of learning and teaching in an unique environment.
– Erik Ashmore