Pressing the send button a few weeks ago on the email that sent in my submission for the CIPR Diploma Critical Reasoning Test (CRT) felt like such an achievement (and relief). After completing the first few modules of the CIPR Diploma I am even more convinced that it was the right decision to start the course.
The content so far has brought me clarity, reassurance and confidence in the role I do here at Staffordshire Police. The diploma is a lot of work, there is no getting away from it. You have to commit your time and energy into the timetable.
I, like many of my colleagues, wish I could find more time to read between the study days, but the more reading I do the more clear I become about why I make the decisions I do. Understanding the theories behind the practice provides the public relations practitioner with clarity. It gives you that couple of moments to think ‘which theory does this activity fit into?’ and helps reason your decision-making.
This clarity helps to provide the confidence needed to deliver the activities, the confidence to challenge assumptions and importantly the reassurance that you are at least thinking through decisions with a little more reasoning than before.
It’s amazing how often the three of us currently studying for the Diploma start speaking about excellence theory, Grunig , Theaker or various other terms from the course, as part of management discussions.
Everyone on my course at the CMC Nottingham study centre works in public sector, or at least organisations closely associated with the public sector, and it’s interesting to see that we face similar challenges regardless of the organisations role.
The day the CRT questions where published saw a flurry of emails amongst our study group. My initial response was one of alarm, then wonder. How to go about even picking the two questions to answer? Those that know me would immediately expect me to do the social media question, but which other?
I resisted the social media question at first. I felt it was important to spend an hour on each of the questions to scope them out, and work out which I felt most confident in answering and most interesting. I did (of course) answer the one on social media, but I found it more challenging than I expected.
It was my the first academic assignment for some time. The key for me was planning my time, I used some annual leave and took a week to concentrate on the two papers then, took a few days away from them and read them again to make sure I had answered the questions sufficiently.
I gave myself the deadline of the Sunday evening before the papers where due on the Wednesday to send them in.
Now the wait for the marks, but fortunately no time to dwell. Work continues at a pace with the launch of ‘Cars behind Bars’
this week, an initiative aimed at getting people to understand the consequences of driving without insurance.