Problem Solving Skills: Overview
It’s normal to experience multiple hassles and obstacles throughout your graduate school experience. Being resilient means that no matter what life throws at you, you will be able to manage it. Resilience helps you turn challenges into opportunities. Through the CareerWISE Problem Solving Skills, you will find personalized learning materials that will build your resilience and help you stay focused and motivated in graduate school. Learn to build on your own strengths, be resourceful, set priorities, make good decisions, as well as many other skills that will contribute to effectively solving and communicating the different problems you face during your graduate education.
Do you know what your strengths are? Most people are aware that they have some good characteristics, but often, there are many more strengths that are not recognized or appreciated. It is important to identify what your strong suits are, and to take advantage of them by developing and building upon your skill set.
Do you see the glass half empty or half full? Keeping a positive outlook is one effective way to cope with conflicts and difficulties in graduate school. Keeping a Positive Perspective is a module about how to cultivate, apply, and maintain a positive attitude or “lens,” regardless of the circumstances.
Interactions with people are murky with personal moods, intentions, agendas, and assumptions. Understanding others is key to having effective interactions. The perspective-taking skills discussed in this module will provide you with tools enabling you to consider situations from many points of view.
Do you often feel lost in graduate school? Do you think the rules and procedures are often not very clear? Do you see yourself not always getting the help and support that you need? You are not alone. This module will assist you in being proactive in finding the opportunities, resources, and advice that will help you succeed during graduate school.
Typically, problems do not occur in isolation; you are dealing with multiple issues at one time. Although you can’t solve everything at once, you can take control over how you will approach the multiple issues vying for your attention. This is a module that will assist you in becoming more strategic and effective at prioritizing your time in graduate school.
Do you know how to turn general concerns into specific, attainable objectives? Setting SMART objectives will help you clarify your priorities and organize the steps you need to meet a desirable outcome. This module will help you turn ambiguous goals or problems into solvable objectives.
You are probably accustomed to brainstorming about research topics or troubleshooting in the lab. Did you know that your brainstorming skills can and should be applied to interpersonal problems as well? This module will help you become more creative and open-minded as you generate alternative strategies to help solve problems you are facing in graduate school.
Do you know the impact that showing reciprocity and gratitude may have on advisors and other stakeholders? Building a strong and effective relationship with your graduate advisor is a central component of your graduate school experience. It is essential to remember to show appreciation and gratitude for the efforts of your advisor and other individuals who serve as stakeholders in your graduate education.
By understanding how you interact with others and how you work best, you may be better able to select an advisor who will help lead you to success, or improve the relationship you have with your current advisor. This module will help you learn what you can do to help build a strong and effective relationship with your advisor
Do you notice that you act in different ways around certain people? The more you know about interpersonal communication styles, the more you can deliberately choose to use a style or not, depending on the situation. This module is designed to help you learn the differences between interpersonal communication styles, as well as to help you assess your personality style and how to adapt your communication style accordingly.
“I think I can, I think I can!” What do you say to yourself silently? Is your self talk positive or negative? Negative self-talk habits can lead to a sense of hopelessness and even cause depression. Luckily bad self-talk habits can be broken. This module is designed to help you understand the function of self talk, identify your self talk style, and use self talk to boost your confidence.
An Arizona State University project, supported by the National Science Foundation under grants 0634519 and 0910384
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views
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