Hayley speaks about her experiences of studying a Radiography MSc module at RGU as part of her Continuing Professional Development.

What made you decide to study at RGU?
"To be honest it was at the discretion of my employment as to where I would study and they suggested RGU, as our practice educator had previously studied there and recommended it. "

What did you need to think about before you made that decision?
"I needed to be certain that the course was distance learning and I also needed to be clear of the structure of the course including the course intent to ensure that this was adequate for my learning and meeting the needs of the service that I would provide in our department if I was successful with the course. The course content was easily accessible and my practice educator and manager agreed this was suitable."

What was the best thing about studying with us?
"I have enjoyed taking part in a structured academic module that enhances my clinical practice. The course satisfied my desire to learn again and has implemented a change in my practice by helping me to think, reflect and feedback on situations that occur, constantly striving to improve the service I deliver. The assignment was well structured and organised and I felt I knew what was expected of me from the start. This was reflected in the grade that I achieved. Each topic was optional to study per week, and I believe this helped me individually, when writing and planning the academic assessment. "

How did you face the challenges of balancing work/study but also normal work/placement practice?
"Previously, when I studied for my BSc Hons degree in Radiotherapy, I also worked at the same time - so have always had the difficulty of self managing my time. However I have always felt that working clinically whilst studying truly complement each other and helps you to succeed. I did have to give up a lot of my own time, studying at weekends, but this is a sacrifice you make when becoming a student and wish to achieve the outcome you are striving for. I am very fortunate in the department I work in, as they currently hold a CPD study time policy which supports its radiographers by allocating individuals time to work on CPD during normal working hours. Any time allocated during working hours must be supplemented by the equivalent amount of time outside working hours. The support from this programme was instrumental in helping me accomplish my objectives. The time allocated to me most definitely helped me meet module objectives and certainly went a long way towards relieving the pressure of deadlines to be met."

What are the people like at RGU?
"Our course lecturer was extremely helpful in always being there when I needed help or advice, and she was well organised, which obviously helped me in completing work and meeting deadlines. It was reassuring having her support throughout the course, reducing any anxiety."

What does the future hold for you?
"The course has definitely enabled me to manage my time efficiently and effectively and I will work upon my M level writing in the future which I hope will improve with practice and experience. After completing the course I have now met my objectives for my new role as a Breast Macmillan Radiographer Specialist. I will be able to independently perform on treatment reviews for patients undergoing radiotherapy treatment, knowing my radiographer-led limits and boundaries, and highlighting when to refer the patient if necessary. This course has enabled to me develop professionally and I hope to continue learning by enrolling on a consent MSc module where I can further my knowledge and understanding in the field of radiotherapy."