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#WeekendWatch: Final Exam Resources

#WeekendWatch: Final Exam Resources published on 15 Comments on #WeekendWatch: Final Exam Resources Login Help videos are free to Virginia Tech students with your VT.EDU login. Start at the VT.EDU login page to access these resources.

Our #WeekendWatch is a little different this week. Specifically, it’s longer than usual, with a lot of options for you to choose among. Let me explain. Since we only have a few days left in the term, I want to share all the resources that you can use as you work on your final exam. That way, any of you with the time to work ahead can do so.

I created a playlist Final Exam Resources on Performance Reviews, comprised of three short courses, 31 videos total. If you watched everything, it would take 1h 21m (but I really don’t expect you to watch every minute of every video).

Here is the table of contents for each of the courses (copied directly from Watch the parts that you have questions about as you work on your final.

Course: Preparing for Your Review (14m35s)

  • Introduction (1m8s)
    • Welcome (1m8s)
  • Review Preparation (11m44s)
    • Preparing for your review (2m1s)
    • Sharing your work (4m55s)
    • Self-evaluations and final preparation (4m48s)
  • Conclusion
    • Next steps (1m43s)

Course: Building Self-Confidence (21m 27s)

  • Introduction (1m0s)
    • Building Confidence (1m0s)
  • Steps to Building Your Confidence (19m14s)
    • Owning where you are and where you want to be (2m 33s)
    • Dealing with the past (2m41s)
    • Helping and volunteering (1m31s)
    • Setting achievable goals before stretch goals (2m1s)
    • Removing negativity (2m7s)
    • Visualizing success (1m57s)
    • Planning for failure (1m43s)
    • Assessing your progress (1m36s)
    • Accelerating the process (1m57s)
    • Celebrating you (1m13s)
  • Conclusion (1m13s)
    • Final Thoughts (1m13s)

Course: Enhancing Your Productivity (45m 37s)

  • Introduction (3m10s)
    • Welcome (2m28s)
    • Using the exercise files (42s)
  • Your Most Valuable Activities (14m42s)
    • What makes you irreplaceable? (2m47s)
    • Discovering your most valuable activities (4m18s)
    • Avoiding the least-valuable-activity trap (3m21s)
    • Focusing with the Order of Offloading (4m16s)
  • Building Up Coworkers (9m 31s)
    • `Offering assistance (2m 43s)
    • Identifying coworkers’ most valuable activities (3m11s)
    • Creating a plan of improvement (3m37s)
  • Having Focus (17m15s)
    • Managing your time (3m2s)
    • Eliminating external distractions (5m24s)
    • Eliminating internal distractions (5m28s)
    • Maintaining a long-term focus on your career (3m21s)
  • Conclusion (59s)
    • Final thoughts (59s)


Note: These videos have closed captioning, so they do not need transcript.



After watching the preparing for your review set of videos, I learned that evaluation is the biggest part of your personnel file. This performance evaluation that we are submitting is extremely important because this is our time to show our teacher how much we have done throughout the semester and how hard we have worked. If we leave important elements out, our teacher will not know how hard we worked and therefore our grade may be different than what we expected. I also learned that you should share examples of your work within your performance review to remind your teacher of your best work. After watching the building self-confidence set of videos, I learned it is all about the confidence you have and how you portray it. To be successful within our performance review we need to talk confidently about everything we did and act like we truly believe we deserve the grade we are writing about. After watching the enhancing your productivity set of videos, I learned that once your make yourself look valuable, then you need to focus your time on those activities that make you standout and become valuable. It is important that the teacher understands how hard you have worked and why you feel as though you are a valuable student that added good insight to this class.

After watching most of the videos in the three sets of videos, I have learned just how important it is to build your credibility and establish yourself as someone who has put in a lot of time and effort into the work for this course through the performance review. Throughout the semester, we are told of what is required, and what is optional to go above just the core requirement for the course. This portion demonstrates if we are willing to put in the work to get the grade that we desire for the course. It is also up to the student who is creating the performance review to include every detail necessary in order to try to achieve the grade desired. In the professional world, nobody is just going to simply give you a pay raise, or the week vacation that you want. You have to go for it yourself, creating a professional proposal to the supervisor in a manner that is respectful, without any form of plead. I learned more about this after watching the “Preparing for the Review” section of videos. After watching the “Building Self-Confidence” set of videos, I found just how important it is to have confidence in yourself. A lot of positive outcomes arise simply from being confident in yourself, such as better performances, people wanting to be more social with you, and of course, being in a great state of mental health. After watching the “Enhancing your Productivity” set of videos, I found the most valuable portion being that you have to put yourself out there. After developing self-confidence, you gain the drive and will to do so much more. Being a part of the community and putting yourself and your name out there can result in multiple benefits. Overall, these videos were really insightful and really reiterated the concept of having confidence in yourself, being the best you can be, and living your life to it’s fullest potential.

This series of videos was very informative for how we’ll write our performance review. It’s up to the student to argue for their effort, citing evidence of extra effort put into the course. Plus, confidence plays a key role. If you don’t stand up for yourself, you’re gonna get a B because you downplay your work in this class. I’m not going to do that. I’m going to put evidence of all my assignments and extra work into this performance review. It’ll even help with reviewing everything we’ve learned.

I think that this series of videos was very helpful. It’s up to me to argue for the grade that I will receive, citing evidence of the extra effort that I put into the course. If I don’t do a good job arguing the grade I should get, then I may not receive the grade that I deserve. I will put in evidence of the extra work I have done throughout the course into my performance review to make sure I get the grade I believe that I deserve.

I watched a few of the shorter videos but I will be sure to watch through more as I work through my Performance Review. When completing a performance review it is important to really take a step back and look at everything. You need to be critical of yourself and really take a hard look at what you did well and not well. One of the expectations of this course was that the harder you worked, the better your grade would be. But doing the work alone is not enough. With this review we have to showcase all the extra effort we put in if we want that better grade. Failing to do so in an effective and persuasive manner could result in us not receiving the grade we think we should get.

I watched some of the videos, specifically the ones on “Your Most Valuable Activities” and “Having Focus” as these are areas that I struggle the most with. I like how the video goes through very common distractions that people have in their everyday lives and how to deal with them effectively. Some of these things, such as making sure my phone is on silent and away when I’m working or studying, I have already adopted through college and are very effective. Others, like learning to avoid multitasking, I think I will try as I’m someone that tends to work on multiple assignments at one time rather than finishing one and moving onto the other.
The “Most Valuable Activities” section brought up interesting points about how to prioritize your work and activities based on your self-worth. Although I disagree about his methodology for selecting the most valuable activities, he’s approaching it from a logical, mathematical standpoint and it’s good to see how others decide what work they prioritize.

I have never written a performance review so I am excited to watch these videos. The steps stated are know your review schedule, add dates to your calendar, and compare to current workload (look at milestones). To begin, the best thing is to front load (collect samples of your work and be able to show it, seek out mentors). Next draft a development plan for new ideas, such as new tasks, role changes, training, and education. I found it interesting to focus on improvement and to have ways to work on your flaws and feedback. Lastly, remember to look over and share your achievements.
Moving onto the next set of videos, building confidence is the main topic to reflect on. I did not really consider confidence a “skill” and didn’t realize you can improve upon it like playing basketball. Along with this visualizing success is something to really focus on and I know I have done this on multiple things, involving school and running.
The last set of videos included enhancing your productivity. I automatically became very interested into this set of clips because I feel that I can be unproductive at times and would like to learn how to become more productive. To begin, I began thinking what makes me irreplaceable and I thought about my personality first. The video reflected on “most valuable activities” and it made me think more about my major and what differs me from my co-workers. Looking more into this, I am the only Industrial Engineer in the office, so that could make me irreplaceable.

I think after watching this series of videos my biggest takeaway was the video reflecting confidence while arguing your grade. If you show you are timid and did not work hard for your grade its going to reflect in performance review. I want to be able to show how much time I put into this class, and how hard of a worker I am. Therefore, I believe the best way to do that is to prove yourself is to include all the details you can in order to show our teacher we deserve a certain grade.

I agree with you Emilie. You are your own best advocate, so creating a favorable, yet honest, performance evaluation is very important to getting the outcome you would like (in this case a good grade). When it comes to give yourself a performance evaluation in the workplace these skills are even more important.

I watched the videos “Preparing for Your Review”. The one “regarding preparing for your review” made good points about carving out time on my calendar for this assignment. Finals week is crazy, and I want to make sure I make this assignment a priority so I receive the grade I deserve. I like that this performance review allows us to argue for the grade we think we deserve. If you just grade based on the number of posts, the quality is not taken into account. Allowing us to describe our work is a great way to judge the quality. I like that they Lynda video pointed out that we need to acknowledge what we could have done differently and how we have not done perfectly. If anything, a performance review will be good preparation for future job reviews. The “Building Confidence” videos emphasized how important confidence is in life and in the workplace. One of my favorite lessons the video emphasized was owning where you are. If you are stuck in what you aren’t or your failures, then you can be limiting yourself and your potential. Believing in yourself and who you can be can be crucial in you becoming that person. Failure is inevitable. You have to be prepared for failure and learn from it so you don’t repeat those mistakes.

One of the videos that I found most interesting was the one about facing failure. We will all face failure in our careers and lives, but being able to acknowledge that and move on is vital to our success. Even in this class, some of us have faced struggles, but being able to recognize our downfalls and then show how we recovered from them should speak a lot towards our determination and dedication to the course.

After watching the first set of videos, I very much enjoyed the discussion on Most Valuable Activities vs Least Valuable Activities, and the value added to the company. It was something I hadn’t thought of doing before but it definitely has merit. When you break down the dozens of activity that you do in a week there are clear differences between the value of each activity. I will try and do this with my new job as a financial analyst and work to cut out the work that is clearly replaceable. I think this plays into the need to always differentiate yourself from others in the job field and is important when applying for a job, fighting to keep a job, or trying to get a promotion.

I watched the building self-confidence section. I don’t think I struggle with that but there is always room for improvement. The most impactful part of the video covered measuring my goals and positive thinking. This is very important for students because we aren’t always solely dealing with school. Sometimes, we are dealing with family, friends, relationships, and even ourselves. As long as we remove the negativity from our lives and make progress forward that is most important.

The course that I decided to watch was Preparing for your Review. I wanted to watch this one because as I begin to write this report, starting is the hardest part. It gets confusing sometimes to go through the requirements and understand the full realm of the project. This video really made it clear to me how to write these performance reviews. It will now be easier for me to look at all the work I’ve done in the class and translate that into a report.

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