Page 1

SLAMs issue 3


Approach to

Studying English Do You Like



The Importance of

Dreams Mrs. Jodie-Lee Trembath Teacher of the year 2010

Misunderstandings & Mistakes

in the studying process


LSU Learn to Learn

Your courses ARE COUNTED Make sure you KNOW where we are and see us!

Who are we? We are RMIT students like you. Overloaded with work? Don’t know how to start an assignment? Doing OK but want to do GREAT? We’re here to make your life easier

We learnt your courses and experienced what you are struggling with now. We know how to deal with questions and problems. We want to help you. We are friendly and approachable.

and your studies better. !" Individual consultations with our friendly Learning Skills Advisors. Book an appointment or drop into our office any time. The door is always open!

What courses are included in SLAMs? 1. Business Computing I 2. Business Statistics

!" Academic skills workshops for everyone.

3. Commercial Law

!" Workshops for specific courses to help you deal with difficulties in your courses.

4. Company Law (SGS only)

!" SLAMs mentoring program, from week 4 to week 10. Ask a question – they want to help!

6. Intro to Logistics and Supply Chain Mgt

“They know their stuff!” “Best workshop ever.” “Nice job LSU!” SGS Campus

HN Campus

4th Floor Beanland Library & Learning Commons

Room 1.2.010 – In the Library

Email: learningskills.sgs@


The LSU – Learn to Learn

5. Introductory Accounting

7. Macroeconomics 8. Management Accounting and Business 9. English 10. Prices and Markets 11. Marketing Principles 12. Professional Communication (SGS only)

Just come along. No appointment needed!

Editor’s Letter Willing to Learn Willing to Share


ne of my friends told me that when studying at RMIT, she experienced all sorts of emotion: sadness and happiness, anxiety and hope, stress and relief. I think her saying is pretty much true. You may feel sad because you failed a course or got a bad mark. You may feel anxious when the exams come. You may feel so stressed that you want to take a real break like An in ’60 days of summer’. Ok, I know what you think but this newsletter is not merely about feelings. Who wants to read tons of feelings of other people anyway? There must be more than that for you to read and actually benefit from this newsletter. Keeping that spirit in mind, this semester edition still focuses on how to help you in your studying. You may find yourself interested in playing logistics game suggested by DiepAnh to understand how logistics could be that practical. You may understand how to study and prepare for your exam better with ‘Misunderstandings and mistakes in the learning processes’. When editing the newsletter, I found some amazing coincidence like ‘big minds meet together’. One of them is the topic about ‘rumors’. You may want to learn how to take advantage of rumors in ‘Just the rumors’ or demystify the rumors in ‘Professional Communication - Rumor control’. Besides some specific tips for you, an article offers you deeper level of thoughts and experience which are useful for not any specific course but rather your degree. These experiences are probably understood by ‘old’ students and are desired by newbies who can’t wait to strive for HDs. Want to know where the article is? Go to page 13. You may find what the article said difficult to understand at first but just keep it in mind and constantly search for it. You will be surprised and amazed by what you later discover.

To welcome the new SLAMs course English in Hanoi, a series of articles about how to study English will be also included. Want to get a better mark in English? – go to page 9. Not stopping there, you will have a glance at something else - not about your studying but your dream. You will feel ‘the importance of dream’ and how one can change his dream when coming to RMIT in ‘RMIT and the evolution of my dream’. All in all, each writing will show you different experiences and various aspects even when they seem to be about one topic. Above all, the most obvious thing I have seen when editing this edition is the writers’ passion to share their experience and the willingness to guide others to make the best of themselves in their study. So I hope that you will enjoy reading this and hopefully one day I will see you joining us as a SLAMs mentor or mentee. On behalf of the contributors, Vu Thuy An

Cover Story Mentee Pham Minh Chinh I first met her in the library when I really needed help in reviewing Statistic last semester. I saw her on the Slams’ desk and came to ask her some questions about the subject. She was very enthusiastic when sharing her knowledge, explaining the Statistic’s theory and guiding me solve the exercises. I was very clear about the exercises after listening to her and I had a really high mark for the mid-term. After that, whenever I prepared for the class-test or midterm, I always came to see her in the library. Each time, we often study first and then, if both of us were free, we chated with each other. By that, I know she is President of RMIT Accounting Club, the same as me, I am president of RMIT Sanshou club. We began to feel friendlier after each time talking and exchanging experiences about studying in RMIT or in managing a club. It is great to be friend with her and I am really happy that we have been very good friend to each other. We are now usually helping each other on studying, in holding events or promoting for each one’s clubs. I hope that this friendship will last long. By the way, I also realize that SLAMs is not only a group of mentors who helps and guides students in studying the subjects, it also give us an opportunities and friendly environment to meet and make friend with great people.

Content MENTORS’ STORIES !60 days of summer


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Mentor Nguyen Thi Bao Khanh

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“In my impression, Chinh is a fun and sociable guy who always talks about his passion in Sanshou. He is the kind of person who is always available and willing to help others. Besides SLAMs, our friendship was deepened by our common commitment in other real-life activities– especially in the relationship of our clubs. I and the Accounting Club owed him and the members of Sanshou Club a lot for their helps in putting up our programs and in return, we lent a hand in the establishment of the Sanshou Club. This summer, Chinh opened his own coffee shop and I had the honor of being invited as one of his first guests in the opening day. This semester, I shall be SLAMs of Macroeconomics. I’m excited with the thinking that Chinh and I again may have more chances to see each other around. I want to say thanks to SLAMs - a great place that helped students like us to make friends and enquire knowledge”

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Mentor’s Stories

Days of Summer By Nguyen Thu An

Summer Vacation?For RMIT students it’s summer semester, because we can only have a brief semester break before heading back to campus, coping with lectures, assignments and the summer heat. While our friends are on holiday, we enjoy being intellectuals locking ourselves up in computer labs and library... Well, I’m just exaggerating a little bit. After all, it isn’t that miserable when you get used to the academic schedule. But this summer I asked myself:

“Why do I have to force myself to get used to that? How about a REAL break, not only about time but place and people as well?” I decided to get an AIESEC exchange internship, joining a community development project in Thailand called “ASEAN in 60 days”, in which I would join students from Southeast Asian countries to organize workshops and activities about ASEAN Community 2015 for Thai students. So I made two adventurous decisions: Take one semester off and take off going to another country. I’d been in Thailand before, but this coming back time was totally different. The trip brought me so much more than I had expected. We, 28 interns from 6 countries, had 60 days filled


amazingly fresh experiences when carrying out the project in 3 provinces. I stayed with 3 different Thai families, traveled to 9 provinces with my host families or with other interns, from the tribal hills of Chiang Mai to sunny beach of Pattaya, from first class shopping malls in Bangkok to the paddy fields in Chaiyapoom.

Thailand is truly the land of smile. Thai people are extremely nice: before you ask , they would offer to show you the road if you are a tourist appearing to be lost,. Visit any shop, the seller - whether she is a beautiful clerk in a brand shop or he (or she) is a lady boy (well, this is more common in Thailand) in the market - will smile and say “khob khun kha” (“thank you” in Thai). Stay with a Thai family and they will treat you like one of the family member, despite linguistic and cultural difference. They would take you to try every tasty street food and bring you out on family trips in the weekend. Of course we had more stuffs to do besides travelling, shopping and eating. We attended a training conference to learn about ASEAN and Thailand, before going to Thai schools and teaching the students about ASEAN and our countries (I presented about Vietnam for around 50 times in front of my students). The most colourful day was ASEAN Village, where

The trip brought me so much more than I had expected.

we all wore traditional costumes and shared our cultures and could truly appreciate “cultural diversity”. There had been moments I felt really stressed and dispirited when the project got stuck with many problems. The hardest time for us was when we were separated in a remote province, totally unprepared. Imagine you are expected to teach a primary school where the only English teacher could barely understand you; and for days you cannot have a ‘normal’ conversation with anyone. However after one week we persuaded our school directors to let us form small groups to deliver workshops to students. It turned out to be my most unforgettable teamwork experience: 6 people from 4 countries teaching, dancing, drawing, acting, and trying every possible way to make our students understand.

befriend with young people from different countries, to not only adapt to but enjoy living in a different culture, and to be proud of being a Vietnamese among foreign friends. But above all, I learn that when we take a break from our normal routine, we can be amazed by what we can give and receive. It was not summer refreshment, to me it was a life changing experience. This is just a glimpse into my summer in Thailand. If you’d like to hear, meet me and I’ll tell you lots of stories, or maybe you can experience it yourself next time! Why not? (Consider one more great reward: no school until the next semester! Free to do what you want while your classmates are busy with exams.)

As I mentioned in the beginning, this trip was beyond my expectation in many ways. I learnt how to live, work and


Mentor’s Stories



Dien Nguyen Trung Nam Back to the time each RMIT student came here, we were all told that this is an English speaking campus. For those starting from the English program, you would be “killed” if ANY English teacher heard that you were using ANY language other than English (and of course, the most common “ANY language” in RMIT Vietnam is Vietnamese).Okay, you will not be “killed” actually, but our teachers are very serious and strict about that. However, the purpose of them being like that is only for our benefit. When doing academic programs, presenting oral presentations with the habit of not using English regularly makes you become very vulnerable when facing unexpected incidents or questions, just like walking around a battle field with a fragile shield! Similarly, the homework, tests and assignments will easily crash you into pieces! If you have ever been in such situation, you will definitely agree with me that being “killed” by English teachers is A THOUSAND TIME more comfortable than that. Obviously, the SLAMs program essentially requires that mentors should always speak English to mentees. Honestly, I had no surprise when I heard about that in the SLAMs training, but I knew it would be extremely hard to be achieved. Actually, many mentors have used Vietnamese at least once in their SLAMs sessions since they could not avoid using it.

Why English?

Why Vietnamese?

These two rationales appear to be reasonThe very first reason is that many mentees English able among students. However, think a and mentors have already known each otPlease! little bit further, you can see that “friends” her and discussing in Vietnamese makes does not only mean “flexibility” or “symthem feel more comfortable and easier. pathy”. Sometimes being good friends to My first mentee was also a friend of mine, each other means pointing each other’s we always use Vietnamese in daily chattiimperfections and correcting them ng and when she came to ask me, we talktogether. Similarly, mentors can help ed in Vietnamese naturally (sorry Van, all mentees to handle the problems easily and RMIT staffs and English teachers,my bad quickly by using Vietnamese, but doing so !). Additionally, mentors are students like will unconsciously decline our own abilimentees;they tend to be more flexible than ties to use and practice daily and academic lecturers about not using English. ConseqEnglish, which is crucial for our future uently, using Vietnamese appears to be study and work! Using English when reasonable and accepted automatically and SLAMMING and requiring your partner secretly between mentors and mentees. do the same might be hard initially, but it Another “excuse” for our faults is that our English sometimes is not enough for everthe power of making changes will benefit no one else but you first! Pesonally, I think fully “Englishize” all SLAM ything we discuss about. SLAM mentors is right in our hands sessions is a tough but not an impossible are chosen to help students with academic problems, but some of them are very tough to be fully mission (if it were, we should ask Tom Cruise for some help). The power of making changes is right in our hands. Mentors, explained in a second language. Sometimes mentors have to combine information from mentees with their own experiences you have been brilliant and successful students in your subject to “sketch” the questions and figure out the solutions. How- (not including me, swear), I believe finding an effective way ever, transferring them into an understandable way to mentees to use English to help your friends is an exciting challenge! is another story. Mentees cannot understand the explanation of Mentees, if you can fully express your questions and acknowltheir lecturers so mentors have to make it clearer than that. edge the explanation in English, you will understand your Additionally, even lecturers with professional teaching and subject deeper and even beat up further troubles by yourselves, English skills can get trouble with that issue! Likewise, some what are you waiting for? Using Vietnamese to study in an students may have limited English ability to express their English campus is like buying pirate CDs, it can be very concern. Probably, it will take time for both mentors and men- convenient and time - saving, but you cannot get the full tees to come to an agreement about the question and the benefit of purchasing authorized ones as well as the feeling of solutions. With the restricted time frame of 2-hour-SLAM legality. The more you use and practice English, the more sessions the shorter way is chosen – using Vietnamese – to fluent you will become. Remember how useful and widely used English is, and getting used of it right now will definitely save time and help as many mentees as possible. pay you well in future education and career. 3

Lecturer’s Stories

Teacher of the Year 2010

Mrs. Jodie-Lee Trembath Professional Communication

She’ll help you realize and develop the abilities you don’t know you have

Nailing Nancy Sinatra’s “These boots are made for walking” in a full-on cowboy costume on the Wild Wild West carnival stage last year to the cheering of over a thousand students and staff, Mrs. Jodie-Lee Trembath is widely known as the rock star of the Professional Communication program. Far from just being involved in the event as a performer, Jodie was the woman behind it all – she taught the very first cohort of Professional Communication graduates to run a successful Wild Wild West campaign that increased the percentage of students doing the Student Experience Survey last year by 54%. After taking a sabbatical in semester A/2011 to fully concentrate on her research project on Public Relations education, which is funded by RMIT as part of her Teaching Awards in 2010, Jodie is now back at charming her way through the campus discussing theoretical concepts and current issues in Public Relations, without giving up on teaching one of the most challenging skills to any Communication major: professional writing. While it should come as no surprise to anybody that Jodie used to be an Art major and teacher, it is fascinating to find out how her background fits in with her current career in teaching and researching Public Relations. If to study the arts is to study humanity, to study Public Relations is to do the exact same thing through a different lens.

“It was a very natural progression for me from theatre to Public Relations. I love the idea that communicating an idea effectively – whether that’s through performance, or through writing – can affect a person’s perspective, make them feel something, make them think more deeply on important issues”. Doing academic research requires a substantial amount of work and critical thinking – so does working in the arts: “It’s not all glamour and parties like it seems in the movies! I’ve always been pretty systematic in my approach to performing and directing, so in my academic career I’m applying a lot of the same skills. To me it’s all one and the same – an exploration of people and how people think”. Having a lecturer with such affection towards humanity means she will see in you what you don’t even see in yourself – although Jodie is notorious for being a hard marker, she’ll help you realize and develop the abilities you don’t know you have. Having a lecturer with such patience and fondness to work with details means you can’t be lazy and get away with it. You’ll be fooled by her amid sense of humor and the fun, dynamic atmosphere in the classroom that she works really hard to create and assume that she’ll go easy on you if you attempt to finish work overnight, yet unfortunately that’s never going to happen.


But Jodie can also be your best friend outside the classroom. Be expected that she’ll follow you on Twitter – she follows all her students on Twitter – because that’s where and how she gets to understand what’s going on in students’ world, what we feel, want and need. Sometimes she’ll observe your world from afar, sometimes she’ll drop in and have a little chat, but you bet that all the time she’ll take everything into account to tailor her lessons and make them as relevant to us as possible. “The thing I like the most about teaching is my students. When I’m in a bad mood or I’m feeling overwhelmed by how much marking I have, I go to class and I always end up smiling within minutes of being in the classroom.” Indeed, you hardly ever see Jodie frown or get upset in class – the kind of positive energy she brings awakens even the biggest sleepy head in the classroom. She’ll make jokes, she’ll move you around, she’ll challenge you to do better, and she’ll be there to help you when you need. In the end, as T.S Eliot has put it, “humor is also a way of saying something serious” – Jodie’s comic manner is a thoughtful way of approaching Public Relations education in Vietnam, which is something still in its infancy to say the least. “Teaching PR in Vietnam is a once-in-a-lifetime privilege because I have the opportunity to meet and get to know the first generation of qualified PR practitioners in the country, so I’m helping to guide the people that are going to guide the direction of a whole industry. It’s quite an honor to be given that responsibility”.

By Nguyen Hong Hai Dang

Jodie’s 5 Tips to do well in Professional Communication Realise that everything you learn, in every course you take, relates to everything else you learn in every other course you take. So many students don’t recognise how they all connect, and so they miss out on a lot of important understanding.

!"#$"%&'()*(+,+!-- !">5(>*5(!+A<(>*5( THING. When you !+A<@((;&(64$$(/"$B( learn a new theory your writing, it will or concept in class, help your underthink about how it standing and it will make you more relates to that movie you saw the attractive. (Okay, other day, or what the last part may your friend said at not be true, but I $.*%/0((-).1$$(2"( have no evidence to surprised by what say that it’s NOT 3).1$$(#4*5(6/"*(3).( true, so it’s worth a force yourself to &C3@D think about your in-class learning, 789:;<+()=(%$>??@

9>$E(>2).&(4&@((F)( ?""(>(:GAH(I"*&)CJ( or get a study group together with other willing people and start meeting regularly to talk about the stuff you’re learning, share the stuff you don’t understand and the stuff you’ve K.?&(#4L.C"5().&0

<)*1&($"&(3).C(+*L$4?/( fall down. There was a big article in the paper this week about how students studying at foreign universities have a lot of advantages compared to domestic university graduates, mostly because of their foreign language communication skills. If employers are seeing this as your biggest competitive advantage, take >5M>*&>L"()=(&/>&@((8?"( 4&()C($)?"(4&@

1 2 3 4 5


Lecturer’s Stories

Do You Like Teaching? Pham Minh Hoa Lecturer in Economics


arrived at UQ. On the other hand, I also thanked them for helping me to get to know different cultures or see the same problem from different perspectives.

Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS) is a program in my old University, University of Queensland (UQ), in which the best second and third year students are selected and trained as leaders to run study groups in chosen subjects for predominantly first year students. As PASS leaders, every week we re-attended the lecture (like studying the course again), held meeting with the PASS supervisors, prepare the materials and work in pairs with groups of up to 25 students in weekly informal voluntary study sessions.

The second advantage of working as a mentor is that it assists your deep learning. I learnt Statistics in the first semester, and became PASS leader in the course for my remaining time in UQ. Everybody knows the best way to study something is to teach them to others. Re-attending classes, preparing mock exam questions, anticipating and answering questions from friends not only consolidate my knowledge in Statistics, but also prepare myself better for more advanced or related courses, e.g. Econometrics or Finance. Moreover, as I was a lecturer in Vietnam before going to Oz, the job helped me to put myself in both the learner and the teacher’s shoes, learn how to communicate more effectively and to collect feedback from audience.

was asked to share with you about my own experience of being a PASS leader in my old university, which is similar to a SLAMs mentor in RMIT here. Now 3 years passed, but being a mentor helping international friends with a course like Statistics is one of my best memories in Oz.

The most exciting about becoming a PASS leader is that I have much more friends and felt proud of being helpful. Many Vietnamese students in UQ led a quite closed life like sharing house, cooking, studying…. within the Vietnamese community. Fortunately, I had the chance to talk to lots of international friends, mostly greenhorn, just like me few months before. In class, I shared with them the same initial difficulties struggling with the lengthy lecture slides or the demanding project, revealing my personal tip to approach the exercises or exams. After class, we chatted about Vietnamese and Chinese cooking, what makes a Yankee girl follow her Aussie boyfriend to decide to study in Brisbane, or how to find accommodation around St Lucia campus. I was happy as I could help them successfully cope with a course like Statistics or overcome the loneliness, culture shock when they first

Finally, it is quite coincidental that when I joined RMIT Vietnam one year ago, my assigned course turned out to be Business Statistics, and the SLAM program was also quite similar to UQ’s PASS program. It reminds me of memories in Oz, and RMIT gave a new comer like me mixed feelings of both familiarity and freshness. Here in RMIT, SLAM has been going on for several semesters, and I believe it can help students a lot, not only in your current study but also in your future career. What you should try is to be more active, by either volunteering to become a mentor, or coming more frequently to its sessions whenever you are in doubt about a topic. More friends, more knowledge, more confidence, that’s what you can get with SLAM.


HOW TO Study


s g n i d


n a t s r e d n s e Misu k a t s i ss e M c o r & p dying u t s e h t in


What do you do while you are learning?

I take a sample of 10 RMIT students asking them about their learning habits and here’s the result.

Many students complain that they study very hard when exam comes but the results are still under expectation. Why is it? The reasons may lie on your Learning Habit rather than your IQ or ability. Let’s find out the reasons and solutions together with our HD students and SLAMs!

By Quyen Ngoc Khanh

2. 80% student are busy doing something else while they are learning and even 50% doing more than 2 activities during studying. Obviously we cannot absorb any more knowledge when we are busy enjoying music or transferring “hot news” with our friends.


a. Stay away from your computer if not necessary “ Print out learning materials so that you can turn off our computer or disconnect the internet as it is more tempting and attractive than your books.” Hai (Marketing Principles mentor )

Wait until the final exam to learn a whole

Many students do not focus on studying right at the beginning, but wait until exam. At that “hot” time, there must be tons of workload and you will be too frustrated to do all. Let’s imagine we do not eat every day and wait until Sunday to eat 21 meals. Though the meals are delicious I doubt if you can eat a quarter of them. Business Computing is a good example. During the whole semester, students work very hard on assignments and do not focus on theory. Before final exam, they study theory madly but it is hard to remember all as it now turns into chaos. Although assignments are worth 40% of total, final exam is a hurdle and can make you fail more easily than assignments. Therefore, you should set aside an amount of time to study theories each week.

b. Hide your mobile phones I know it is hard to require you to turn your mobile off, so just hide it away!

c. Choose the right place to study If you sit in the library to study but all you hear is gossip which distracts you from focusing on study, choose less crowded place to learn such as your home or vacant rooms in level 7 (in Hanoi campus).


Advice You do not have to learn every single thing carefully in detail in the whole semester. However, you should at least understand the basic concept and know how to do exercises after each week. Therefore, you just have to recall what you have learned before and complete revision to prepare for exam. Tuan (Prices & Markets, Business Computing mentor)

Learn in group more frequently than individually. Group learning is very effective but choosing when and how to do so can affect the whole result. If you and your friends do not have anything in mind yet, what will you discuss? How can you help each other understand? You may end up being even more confused and finally chatting with each other.

Advice If you read slides or books to understand by yourself, it will be great moment when you finally understand it. It would be like Archimedes in bathroom shouting “Eureka”. You will definitely gain self-confidence and love the course more. To me, self-learning should be done before team-learning. After you manage to understand on your own, group learning will be so helpful for you and your friends to discuss problems and help each other understand more clearly. “In Commercial Law, I usually study alone to focus !!!!"#$%&'(!!)!*+,&%-"!,."!,."*/%"$!#-0!1/#232"!#$!4+2.! as possible. If you study in group, consider friends’ !!!!%0"#$!5+,!$326!,*!'*+/!*7-!*-"( !!!!8*-9,!$2#/"!"#2.!*,."/!:!;<!%=!'*+!#&&!0*-9,!6-*7!%,<! !!!!#$6!$*4"*-"!7.*!0*"$(>!! Dung (Commercial Law mentor)

!!?)-!@*44"/2%#&!A#7<!)!7*+&0!$#'!#!2*45%-#3*-!*=! 80% individual and 20% group discussion is perfect. !!!!8+/%-B!0%$2+$$%*-<!'*+!2#-!2."26!7.%2.!/+&"$!,*! !!!!#11&'!=*/!,."!2#$"!#-0!2&#/%='!C+"$3*-$!#-0! !!!!1/*5&"4$(> An (Commercial Law mentor)

Problems in Revision Process During exam revision, we are usually fond of doing exercise and sample tests before reviewing the theories. However, it may cause confusion and inconvenience when you keep reopening slides to review theories when you are doing a sample exam. Additionally, when doing so, you reduce the positive effect of doing a sample exam as it is supposed to be done as if you were in exam room where no materials are available for you to open. Furthermore, what we learn flow in an order and if you forget a lecture or a theory, it may affect another. Therefore, to some certain subjects it is better if you can review in a right order from the beginning and then do exercise.

Advice To me, the best way to do revision is to review the theories first. After you are sure that you almost understand and remember basic theories, do exercise or sample tests. In my opinion, this is especially suitable for accounting subjects as sometimes, if you do not understand the theories fully, it is very hard to finish the exercises accurately. An (Commercial Law mentor)

It depends on the courses and the time left for revision. If the time is limited I would do the exercises first and come back to review what I don’t remember. If I have more time, I would review backwards, chapter to chapter and then do exercise. It is recommended to understand the theories before doing exercise. In general, you should be more flexible during revision.

Study too much at one time This can be referred to part 2. For example, when I study more than 1.5 hours consecutively, I will feel tired and cannot remember anything anymore. Actually, the time depends on your capability to concentrate.


We are all different. it depends on you to choose what can suit you the best and bring the highest results.

This is when you need a rest and ‘other activities’ as in part 1. You may listen to music, eat something or do physical exercise. You may feel a little funny when I mention physical exercise when you are busy doing “knowledge” exercise. However, if you do physical exercise, your blood will go straight to your brain more easily and so you can understand more easily. The key point is to know yourself when you cannot work anymore or when you should walk away from the table to have some relaxing time/relaxation and to come back to study more effectively.‘Who know how to rest can walk a long way’


HOW TO Study

A Comprehensive Approach to Studying English Guideline to studying approach By Vu Thuy An we are talking about how we should study English. Why should we talk about how to study English but not how to study other courses? It is simply because English is the prerequisite for us to be here at RMIT. Without a good English ability, you can do almost nothing significantly in our university. You may say that studying English depends on each individual’s ability. This is true since there are some people who are naturally very good at learning language while some others aren’t. you may think that those who are good will always be good and those who are not so good will still remain the same. Now that is not so true. In my belief, as long as you believe in yourself and do your best, nothing is impossible. Let’s leave the talented students asides, and think about us, normal students who are not that great at learning English and even sometimes struggle. Is there any other way for us to study English as excellently as them? The answer is YES! Let’s take a look at how.


This is by no means an easy and instant way to improve your English. Like studying anything else, to achieve the best possible result, it definitely requires commitments and time.


If you think you have those, continue with me.

Vocabulary WHY


Remember back to when you learnt your mother tongue. What did you learn first? Did you study single words first or how to structure the sentence first? Obviously, you must know words first and only then we put many words together to have a sentence.

Of course new words and their meanings, but there must be more than that for a notebook to be useful. You need to add the word forms, pronunciation, synonyms and antonyms (if applicable) and a few examples. It is recommended that although you should look at the dictionary’s example to understand the true usage of the word, the example written in your notebook is YOUR example. When making the example, you are trying to use the new words for the first time, which helps you to remember the words. When adding a synonym, you may expand your vocabulary if the synonym is a new one. If it is one that you know already, then it helps you to remember the new words more easily as you can link the new one with the one that you previously knew. Pronunciation will help you when you want to refer back to how to pronounce the new words, as it is essential to your listening that you must pronounce the word right before you can notice it in other situations (not only in exam but also in daily conversation).

HOW You should use a vocabulary notebook. It sounds simple and and you have heard about this so many times since many people will have advised to do so. However, having a vocabulary notebook is one thing; what you write in the notebook and how you use it is a completely different story.


Voca HOW TO USE A VOCABULARY NOTEBOOK The first principle is it must be in daily usage for at least 5/7 days of the week. The key is that you don’t have to study too many new words at once, but you should do it everyday. Each day you can learn 5 to 10 new words, depending on the intensity level that you want to study at. The second principle is review, review and review. After you learn something, you forget 80% of what you’ve learnt within 5 minutes. The best situation is that you have another friend that study together with you. You could study and then check the new words together. You don’t have to study the same new words because each person is different in study. The checking person should hold your notebook and ask you either the meaning while you answer the word or vice versa. The checking questions could expand to what the synonym of the word is or provide an example. The checker could question you on any word that you have learnt in your notebook up to the day of checking. It is even better that you have a study group and you can experience different checking styles as some may have quite challenging checking questions.

The third principle is using the new words. After you study the new words, no matter how many times you check, you may still forget the words if you don’t use them. You can use them whenever you want. For example, before practicing writing, open your notebook, have a look at all the new words, and think which ones could be used in your new writing. It is recommended that you should use about three to five new words. By doing so, you will remember the new words and practice their usages. Moreover, your writing would be checked by your teachers and they would help you to identify whether you use the words correctly or not. You can even use when you are speaking. When I studied in L6.2, my study group and I used to joke by using the formal words to speak to each other. It sounded quite awkward as normally we didn’t use them in speaking, but it is a good way to remember the words.


WHY Most Vietnamese students find listening is the biggest challenge because in high school, students focus more on grammar rather than listening and speaking.

WHAT To me, the most useful source that I have used even up till now is the BBC. I usually go to to download episodes. There are three reasons why I recommend this source. Firstly, their pronunciation is a good example for us to follow. You could also experience different speaking voices and even accents of English as most programs invite guests or include interviews. Secondly, as you listen and understand the episodes, it will broaden your social knowledge and related vocabulary. This is particularly useful for your writing when you need to use your knowledge to argue and protect your opinions. Thirdly, it is convenient; as it is podcast, you can download them and put it on your mobile, MP3 player or iPod to listen anywhere at any time that you like. You don’t need necessarily stick to your computer all day but still can practice listening. Now, when you read until here you may think but listen to BBC is too difficult for me. I don’t understand what they are saying, it sounds like some birds is singing in my head. The secret lies at not what you listen to, but HOW you should listen to it. There are two ways of listening. The first one is you consciously listen to it and second one is you unconsciously do so. To be excellent in listening, both ways should be used in a combination, supporting each other. I will explain based on the usage of BBC. Let’s look at the first one, conscious listening, which is when you intentionally attempt to understand what the speaker is talking about. You pay attention to every words that you could catch and take note. This is the most popular way that students use to practice listening and also what we should do in exam. This is an effective way to practice provided that you do it at a reasonable level. Otherwise, it would be very stressful. But this would not make significant or breakthrough improvement without the second listening method. Unconscious listening is when you do not attempt to understand what the speaker is talking about, but instead just let the speaker talks and you can focus on something else. For instance, if you want to surf web then before doing so, turn on

BBC and let it play. You don’t have to listen to it, just let the speaker talks. All you need to do is focus on surfing the web, reading interesting news, chat with friends or play games in facebook or whatever you usually do as entertainment. It sounds unreasonable and illogical right? Can I really practice listening when I don’t listen to it? The answer is yes, you are still practicing listening but you don’t know it or more exactly your brain does it automatically without you noticing it. Why? Let’s remember back to when you learnt your first language. Did you attend any class to practice listening, to pay attention to every word that was spoken? Did you pay attention to each word that your parents spoke to figure out what they meant? Absolutely not, right? So how can we still know Vietnamese or Korean (or what ever language is your mother tongue)? It was because when we were small, all we learn was unconscious. Because surrounded by the sound of that language all the time and everywhere, we eventually naturally we knew it. So why don’t you let your brain do the same thing with this second language? If my words are not enough to convince you, let your experiences do so. You can follow the instructions below for 2 days and experience recognized improvement in your listening. 1. Go to 2. Download ONE episode from the program that you think you like (The length depends on you. If you want a short one, there are some about 10 minutes like World Business Report) 3. Do conscious listening like you are sitting on exam. Remember to keep notes, so the next time you can compare your improvement. 4. Do unconscious listening anywhere and anytime you could, when you are surfing web, chatting on yahoo, reading facebook, doing homework or before sleeping. Just turn that one episode on and then do your work. You don’t have to pay attention to it. Keep doing so until the time you do the 5th step. 5. This time do conscious listening with the episode used in step 3. Take notes and pay attention while listening. After that, take out your old notes, and compare between the two. Did you realize that you could catch more words than the first time you did?

If this helps, then GREAT! You can go on with this method for the period that you intensively study in the English program. After that, you could periodically, practice like this (even in

Speaking My only advice is a classic one that you would have heard many times from your teachers. That is always speaking English! So why do so many students not speaking even though they know it is good? It is like there is a delicious ripe peach in the top of the tree, but not many reach out for that one. Instead they go for other lower ones with much sour and


certainly not delicious. One could have many justifications for why they use Vietnamese instead of English, such as limited ability of using English or using Vietnamese is faster and easier. But I would say that those reasons are used for defensively justifying your action

of not doing what you yourself think that you should do. It is not that whether you can speak English but whether you WANT to speak English. If you do want to, you will do everything or anything you could to speak English. I will tell you my story to illustrate that point. When I first come to RMIT, I saw the sign ‘English speaking campus’ in every passage or corridor that I walked through. I also heard a group of students speaking English to each other. I felt very proud and motivated for having an opportunity to study in such a great environment. I went to my first class (I started at level 5) and spoke English to everyone I met there. I soon realized that there is a reason why the signs are there. Just after the break of the first class, students spoke Vietnamese to each other, which was apparently not like what I imagined. I knew immediately that this was not right. After all, we came here to study English. We had a chance to be in such a great environment, so why weren’t we making the best out of it? I decided that I must speak English. However, I knew that there was a great temptation to speak Vietnamese when all of my friends did so. Therefore, I found ways to cope with this issue.

Foreign friends The best way I found was to talk to those who I had to use English with. I was lucky that I could sit in the same group with 2 Koreans. When I tried to talk to them, they were quite open and we found ourselves practicing lots of listening and speaking. If you have foreign friends in your class, what are you waiting for? Go and talk to them. Initially, you may think that they are not friendly, but maybe they are just waiting for someone who really wants to talk to them. Be open to them and they would be the same with you! If you don’t have foreign friends in your class, I have another solution for you.

Study group Moving to level 6, we were advised to have a study group, and I decided to form one. I only asked those who really cared about their studies and we ended up with six people. We had some rules including always speaking English. Having a study group with people having the same values and concerns as you is another way for you to practice speaking English. Thinking back, I am not sure whether I could have achieved satisfying results without my group’s assistance . So what can you do?

Speaking: Tips for Study Group 1. Form your group. a. You may already have some close friends sharing the same values and desires as you do, all you need to do is officially form the group and make some rules among members. b. If you don’t have any close friend or you are simply new to the university, then start to make friends. Start to consider who you want to make friends with by noticing and observing other students activities. There might be some students you would want to group up with and some you don’t simply because you don’t feel comfortable with them. Don’t worry, like I said above, be open and they will be open to you. c. If you don’t want to form a group, you may find working in pair is easier for you. Having someone together with you will give you courage to continue keep speaking and practicing English while others speak Vietnamese. d. Some guidelines when choosing friends to form a study group: i. Be selective based on the group’s purpose to study. Or more specifically, you should remember that this group is for together improving your English, not just something formed to chat with other. Don’t choose someone because you think having that person in the group would be fun! The key purpose of forming a study group is to help each other improve your study by learning from each other. ii. Your group will not necessary to have all the best students in the class but you should have something to learn from most members. iii. Whether the group members are your close friend or not, being in this group means every member needs to have the ability to tell their friends straightly that ‘this is not right’. Being able to truly comment on your friends’ performance is another way to help each other improve. iv. Generally, no leader is needed however, initially there must be a person who actively knows what to do and guides other members.

2. Establishing some principles a. The principles need not be as long as a constitution but you must have some. Think about the basic ones. For example: i. What time and what day you are going to gather to study together? ii. What are you going to do when you study together? Estimate possible amount of time needed for the activities. You should not study everything together. Choose those that you cannot do alone or are less likely to do alone like checking vocabulary together, doing a mock test or practicing speaking. Generally, you can have the same activities every day like checking new words. However, be flexible when exam come, you can add other activities. iii. Possible punishments and rewards. If a person forgets the word after 3 times checked again, what must they do? Extra reading? Up to you! b. Make sure that the group complies with the set rules. (There could be some exceptions, but not many)




HOW TO Study

By Ngo Hoang Dang

The Flow of Knowledge


atching the flow of knowledge can be plained as understanding the logical link between the knowledge in the subjects or subject to subject.

Now, let’s look at an example of my friend. He failed business computing twice, one day, he asked me that he had had no idea to pass that subject despite studying hard. Look at the result in the second repeat, the marks for Excel and Access assignment were not bad, but he did not pass the final exams. I showed him the reason that the majority of students can do well in Access and Excel assignment because they can follow the guidance of tutorial or ask their friends without question of why they have to do it. The students seem to be satisfied with their high mark, but they do not know what to do with the theoretical questions. Sen, teacher of business computing, said to us in the SLAMS training that students do not care about the theory. Therefore, in the final, some students could not pass. After understanding the relationship between theory and practical in this course, my friend successfully passed the exam.

Students should know that every lesson in RMIT is arranged in a logical way from the simple one to the complicated one – I mean that in every subject the basic knowledge or definition are often taught in the early lesson and the complicate knowledge will be explained latter. However,

The logical link does not only exist from the basic knowledge to complicated knowledge, but also between the complicated knowledge.

Let’s have a look at an example of statistic, if students understand deeply the hypothesis testing, the later lesson will be much easier for students. Therefore, understanding the logical link or the flow of knowledge within every subject is quite important for students to improve the result, and also decreases the time of studying. In addition, the knowledge which you learn in a subject can be used for the other subjects. Yes! Students can easily see that


Tips for

g n i t e k r Ma s e l p i c n i Pr

When people ask me the question of how to pass a subject in RMIT. In order to pass, you should study hard and have good time managing skills, right? Yes, but not enough, I want to say people should catch the flow of knowledge.

It’s all about the

4P’s !

Prepare - do the reading! Pay attention to your lecturer, take note of how companies apply the 4P’s

Practice - try to see the 4P’s yourself when you go shopping, watch TV, read magazines.

Play -Yes, remember marketing should be fun. Do you laugh when seeing a smart advertisement?

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs showed in Organization Behavior can be met again in Leadership and Marketing Principle or the Return of Asset which is taught in Intro of Accounting can be met again in Logistics. Therefore, to save your studying time, I suggest you understand the flow of knowledge in every subject in RMIT. It does not only save time but also improve your result. Finally, the river of knowledge can affect your daily life. Many students, included me, do not study in Organization Behaviour, because this course contains too much theory and believe that this subject can be a gift of RMIT for student to pass. However, many things happened to my study in RMIT that make me change the belief, I feel hardly to survive in workgroup without the knowledge studied in OB. Or in Marketing Principle or Price and Market, It also affects my point of view about the market of Vietnam and also the world. In short, the most important point that I would like to make is that if you want to study well and save time, please pay attention to the logical flow of knowledge within the courses and between different courses, it will create a flow of study, which makes your studying process become much easier. Imagine that you are the swimmer; you will swim better if you follow the flow of water, but it will be hard for you, if you do differently.

See us for more tips about how to get the most out of this course. If you ever: + Feel confused about particular strategy of 4Ps model + Need some advice on how to do the marketing plans + Do not know how to struggle with enormous knowledge and information before Mid-term or Final exam

SLAMs are here to help you (in the library of course ^^)

By Nguyen Thu An & Le Thanh Ha


HOW TO Study

Logistics Supply Chain Management By Vu Diep Anh

Logistics Game

Let’s try it, have an interesting time, become the winner, and get good logistics results

When asked about the feeling of studying Logistics and SCM, most students suggested that logistics is difficult. Some students stated that Logistics theories or strategies are not practical. Logistics Game can possibly help you – new logistics students who want to feel more interested in Logistics which is not unfamiliar as thought. Playing this/a simple useful logistics game would not only assist you to learn or deepen your understanding of basic theories easily but also to have a relaxing and interesting time. To illustrate, to become the winner, all containers must be transported with the right quantity to the right places at the right time when they are needed. Furthermore, you are required to find the most convenient ways to deliver these containers in the shortest time so that transporting time is reduced. Thus, through playing you would understand a part of the 7R’s in Logistics, and other logistics theories that you think of as unrealistic.

Now, click here to discover the helpful website

Vietnam’s Logistics & Supply Chain Blog

This is Vietnam’s supply chain and logistics blog where you can not only find much helpful information about Logistics and Supply Chain Management in Vietnam as well as in the world but also free download a number of Logistics and Supply Chain Management materials in both English and Vietnamese versions. Several entries and articles would help you to have an apparent overview about Logistics and Supply Chain Management. Moreover, a lot of extra links relevant to other useful logistics websites are supported that can assist readers to get more information and deepen their comprehension. It is suggested that this website can support beneficial information to your Practical Assignment Presentation (PAP) and Practical Assignment Report (PAR)


HOW TO Handle Rumors

JUST THE RUMOR By Nguyen Phuong Hoa

Have you ever heard of any rumor about one of your courses? Rumors about courses in our university are very common, especially for freshmen who are eager to know more about their study. The rumors are usually spread from students to students. The most prevalent rumor about courses is the difficulty of exams and the percentage of failure. For example, there was a rumor that the percentage of failure in marketing Principles was about 70% in the first semester of 2011 or a rumor that in Company Law final exam, the exam papers were too hard to do even though students could bring textbooks to the exam room.


HOW TO Handle Rumors


myself had heard some rumors about Business Computing when I was in my first semester here. I heard that last semester, in a group of Business Computing course, the number of students who failed had been more than the number who passed because the final exam had been hurdle and very long with so many theories.

As a Slams mentor, I had listened to some mentees talking about their worry about the rumors of Introductory Accounting’s final exam. They asked me whether the exam papers were as hard and long as some students said. It seemed that they were confused and scared of Introductory Accounting because of the rumors. I had talked to them for nearly half an hour to help them get rid of the rumors. As talking to them, I realized that the mentees might have not figured out a direction in their study and might have lost their confidence. They feared of the rumors so much that they could not enjoy the course.

When studying, I was nervous since it had many technical words and the theories were quite hard to understand. However, I thought that there were still students who had passed and even got high grades, so why can’t I be like them? Therefore, I enjoyed Business Computing as other courses and put the rumors aside. Because of all the difficult and dry theories, I decided to do homework and case studies There might be two to understand the theories in real types of rumors, situations and to make the course ones are about the fact more interesting.

Rumors about courses are inevitable. We receive them actively or passively when we talk to friends and other students. Thus it is important for us to get familiar with the rumors and wisely process them. Not all rumors are bad since there might and the other ones are be two types of rumors, ones are about the facts and the other ones Finally, I passed the course with a overstated information are overstated information by DI, not too high but I was satisfied. by students. students. The fact rumors about It turned out that Business Comphow to study the course, some uting exam papers were not all about lecturers’ teaching style or the theories as I had heard; most of the difficulty of the exams can help you in questions were related to application to study and give you necessary information about situations. Also, I found that the rumors the courses. But if they are overstated, they may somehow had actually motivated me to study negatively affect you. Therefore, you should be aware of that Business Computing. and be confident and critical when facing them.

Tips : how to get rid of the rumors and face them


When you hear a rumor about your courses

think for a while “Is this rumor reliable?”, “Is it reasonable?” There are two sources of information for you to determine the authenticity of the rumors. t0OFTPVrce is from your lecturers. You can come to talk to lecturers to get information and advice from them. are always happy and ready to assist you. It seems to be easier to talk to Slams as Slams are also students; they know your feelings and will help you get rid of the rumors.



If you do not feel like talking to the others about the rumors, you can simply turn them into your motivation to study.

that although in rumors the courses seemed scary, there were many students who had passed with high scores; thus try to make yourself become one of them. Believing in yourself is the key to enjoy your study and achieve high scores. It depends on your choice, to be scared of rumors

HOW TO Handle Rumors

Professional Communication

RUMOR CONTROL Are you sure what you heard is what is true? Check out our Rumor Control for Professional Communication. By Le Thanh Phuong One of the most common things students may have Rumor has it heard about Professional Communication is that all ‘ No rules you will do is being - It’s ALL about creative. Well, though it creativity.’ is true that creativity does Rumor Control matter in studying Professional Communication, FALSE students are also equipped with theoretical knowledge as well as ample practice and application. You will be surprised to see how many concepts, theories and numberone rules you can apply as a Prof Comm student.

Some friends of mine from Commerce once, Rumor has it after sitting down with me ‘ Writing – for an “assignment date” (where we meet up to you just can’t individually work on the get rid of it.’ assessments), said: Rumor Control “Where on earth do you Prof Comm students have TRUE so many words to write?”. Yes, we DO write a lot. Unlike Commerce or BIS with final exams as biggest worries, our major assessments are written reports, essays, plans or simply PR-purposed writings. Adding up to course assessments are presentations and exams - but still, mostly writing. You can say that as a Prof Comm student, you cannot live a week without something to write. As a result, we’re getting more and more familiar with and favorable towards writing (ok, I’m not sure about the “favorable” part but at least we will somehow get along with it very well). So be prepared for great time brainstorming awesome ideas and putting them down into words if you like to take Prof Comm as your major!

There are courses where you actually have to Rumor has it draw. Visual Language and Practice and Theory ‘ If you can’t draw, of Creativity are two of you can’t do them. However, to do Prof Comm.’ well in these courses, you Rumor Control don’t have to be good at drawing. The only reason FALSE why you have to draw is to express your ideas in visual forms (as visuals can communicate, too). So the lecturers don’t pay much attention to HOW you draw (your drawing techniques and lines) as they do to WHAT you draw (your actual idea). In case you are just so rotten at drawing (as I am), you can back up your “drawing” (usually mine is a set of circles and lines and triangles – that’s all I’ve got..) with explanation in words. If drawing is your biggest concern when deciding your major or elective courses, you can stop thinking about them now and just go for what you think is best for you. Professional communicators, especially PR people, Rumor has it are often titled “party ‘ Prof Comm students people”. Well, the same ... thing happens to Prof PR Comm students who may ... tend to be very artistic, party people.’ seem very relaxed (back Rumor Control to the not-true-at-all BOGUS rumor that we are free of theories and rules), spend lots of time doing other stuff than studying, ...“They must party all the time because that’s how they do business”. But don’t get flooded by such rumors. Think about the PR and advertising industry – two main fields of professional communicators; there’re not always parties and fun. If “parties” means events then we are sometimes “party people” but of course for a reason. These may be part of a communication campaign to promote for Nokia’s new phone model or to battle against human trafficking.

We’ve got some rumors cleared up already, haven’t we? If you have heard any rumor that needs clarifying, instead of spreading it, come to talk to us. Other rumor controls will be out in the next issue of SLAMs newsletter ;)


Continuous Improvement

Why? Dreams are destinations which you desire to achieve in your life. Dreams are the standards or the benchmarks for you to measure your success. Having a dream and a plan to make it come true is an indicator of a meaningful life. I think it is hard to imagine a life without purposes. We might feel bored overtime because we do not know what we really want to achieve in our life or why we live.

What is your dream? Is it big enough to push you out of your currently comfortable zone? Do you feel enthusiastic and energetic to pursue your dream? However, having a big dream is not enough to create a meaningful life. Firstly, you have to visualize your dream and set up a plan or a road to it.

Your Plan Hi everyone. I feel GREAT to write something about the importance of dreams. We are all RMIT students who always study hard for a better future. We want to aim high in our life, therefore we should have dreams. By Nguyen Duy Duong

In order to visualize your dream, it should be specific. For example, your dream is to travel around the world and to have a lot of money. However, this is not specific. You should think about what countries; for example, I would like to travel to Paris, America or Japan. You should take some pictures of the countries and hang them around your roomâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wall. You should think about what you would do, if you have a lot of money. Do you want to buy a sport car or to own a tennis court? What brand of the car do you really want? More specific your dream is, more possible you can achieve it. Secondly, your plan should be specific. In fact it much depends on the ways you use to achieve your dream. For example, the way that the plan of an entrepreneur could be achieved has to be different from that of an employee.

OK, you have already created a big dream for yourself and have established a very specific plan to it. Congratulation! You are going to pursue a GREAT life, and most importantly it is your life, your unique life. Your dream should not be identical as someone else. It should be yours and you find yourself in your dream.

The power of imagination You should be imagining that you have already been here. This means you should have feelings that you are living in your dreams, even though at that time, it is not real. Why do I advise you to do that? Because you will start being the person you want to be in the future, and you will begin to shape your thoughts and your behaviours in that way.

By following your plan slowly, step by step each day, I promise that one day, you will achieve your dream and enjoy the feeling of self-achievement. It sounds nice.


Continuous Improvement

& When I was in high school, I had this dream which, not until I entered tertiary education did I come to realize, was utterly silly and naïve. I used to picture myself “somehow” getting a billion VND (by asking my parents for it, inheriting it or winning the lottery, I was not exactly sure). Later, I would put it in a fixed-term deposit. Given the interest rate of 13% p.a. at that time, I would earn roughly ten million VND per month, meaning (the way I saw it) I could spend the rest of my life worry-free, never having to take orders from bosses again.

He always has the smoothest ways of integrating the knowledge of one course into another, making it so difficult not to enjoy his lessons. I remember Dr. Vu once giving an example of himself (hypothetically) keeping his money in a bank. While it may appear that his cash increases each month, his purchasing power, however, might move downwardly due to growth of prices exceeding the current annual interest rate of 14%. For sure I would not want to take that risk, considering current and potentially unexpected changes in the economy of Vietnam.

Little was I aware that life is not that simple. In fact, after only two semesters at our beloved university, I am confident to say I have gathered sufficient ammunition to counter that unrealistic plan. Let us now look at three reasons that have come to my knowledge (thanks to RMIT) and led to me to revise that former little dream of mine.

So here I am, about to enter my third semester and determined more than ever to make a living by having a real job (possibly as an auditor or a chief accountant, since the Accounting courses at our school have helped me to develop the capability of handling figures – especially when there are currencies involved). With the money I can save, I am going to consider all investing opportunities, take into account all factors, make calculations and compare the results in order to ascertain the most profitable option. Additionally, I will try to find a balance between generating wealth and enjoying other aspects of life, ones that cannot be fulfilled by cash.

To begin with, I have learnt that cash, as well as other assets, should be utilized effectively. As my favorite Accounting lecturer – Justin Stevenson – once said in an Introductory Accounting session, holding either too little or too much of a resource is not favorable. If you are short of cash, the people to whom you owe money will not be pleased. Having plenty of it, on the other hand, will incur Opportunity Costs. There are many other alternatives to term deposits, such as lands, shares or bonds, some of which are bound to yield returns higher than 13%. Putting your money in a bank might appear safe; nonetheless, it appears that doing so is not always profitable. The second point I would like to address, which I learnt in Introduction to Organizational Behavior, is that when a need is satisfied, another one of a higher level arises. When you have enough to eat, you will not simply want food – you will hunger for cuisine. When you are able to afford a house, you will then fell a surge of desire for a family. Similarly, if I can make a billion VND, I will want to earn two, or even three billion. At the point where I am fairly happy with my financial situation, I might even move on to needs that has little to do with sitting on enormous amounts of cash, like having wonderful children, or becoming a good father. There are things that money merely cannot buy.

All in all, there are two lessons to be drawn here, especially for those who have once or twice had my previous, ridiculous plan in mind. Firstly, you should not simply rely on one financial source to make it through the rest of your life. Not only is it unrealistic, it is also a clear indication of your laziness. Secondly, there are always so many things you have yet to learn, so it would be wise not to hurriedly make any assumption before gathering enough information. Above all, I just want to say good luck to all of you, both in finding out which job you are suitable for and in achieving the goals you have and will set whatever they are.

By Dang Vu Ha

Another major flaw in my so-called ideal plan is one of the problems our country currently has to face: inflation. Interestingly enough, this did not come to my awareness in a Macroeconomics lecture like one would expect, but rather during a Business Statistics class led by “student-friendly” Dr. Vu Quang Huy.


Continuous Improvement

eamwork! This is not a new topic in our school because most of us have experienced working in teams in many subjects. So I am going to tell you some feelings and experiences which I gain during two years studying at school.


Most importantly, team-working is an important skill for you to achieve some big thing in your life. You cannot build your house by your own, that’s right? There is a saying that “a single tree does not make a forest”. It implies the strength of synthesis between members in a team.

There is no doubt that team working provides many benefits over individual working. However, some of my friends told me that “I hate working in a team; my friends do not finish their jobs”. Teamwork sounds great??? Oh no, some students who I spoke to say that “I would prefer working alone and enjoying freedom. I do not depend on someone else”. Therefore, I come to a conclusion; teamwork does not suit for everyone.

Finally, I emphasize that team-work is not for everyone. Whenever possible based on your strengths and your preferences, you should choose your favorite style. It is your choice. Additionally, I would like to say that for those who do not like working in team, if you are required to work in a team, why don’t you try to make the teamwork as the lessons for you to learn and improve yourself in collaborating with A single tree does other people? You still have to do it not make a forest anyway so why not make the best possible out of it? Similarly, for those who do not like individual working, it is time for you to prove that you are not only excellent at team-working but also independent working!

For someone who has superior ability to achieve a huge amount of work in a limited period of time, teamwork might be wasteful to them. They will feel much better to see the work done in their ways and they will feel it is theirs. For someone like me who is lazy and have poor performance as finishing a report by my own, teamwork is GREAT for me. Why? We can break down the huge amount of work equally to members of our teams. More people, we have more ideas (as well as have more conflicts) to contribute to the report. We also have great time working together.

Teamwork or Not

IT’S YOUR CHOICE By Nguyen Duy Duong Du


“tie a balloon to your leg and ready for the balloon game


()*$( !"#"$%&' HANOI CAMPUS

ⷕ who moved my pizza?


Have ideas for the Newsletter? What do you want to read in the next edition of SLAMs Newsletter? Let us know what should be featured or if you have any articles, tips, stories or puzzles to contribute !

Email us (if you are in HN campus) or (for SGS campus)

SLAMs Newsletter - Issue 3  

A completely student-created publication by the mentors of SLAMs in semester III, 2011.