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If you would like to write for our career development section you can contact development editor Frances Pickersgill. Email: Or write to Nursing Standard, The Heights, 59-65 Lowlands Road, Harrow-on-the-Hill, Middlesex HA1 3AW


lot of data. Most home and university computers will have a CD or DVD writer installed and although a new disc is needed for each backup, the outlay is well worth it. For those with a Windows Live email account, SkyDrive provides up to 25Gb of online storage. This can be accessed online from anywhere in the world, is free and is password-protected.

Mobile phones

Better safe than sorry Vincent Tremayne explains the different ways students can protect work stored on computers Losing days or weeks of written work due to computer loss or malfunction can mean more than just frustration. It can lead to an assignment being submitted late, prompting mark deductions and making a student look unreliable. It is a good idea to back up your work continually in a secure place separate from your laptop or PC, so that you can restore at least some of your work if the original is lost. Several back-up methods are available. Most universities issue their students with login details to access personal storage space NURSING STANDARD

on the university network. This is a password-protected secure location where files can be backed up each night. USB stick or pen-drives cost less than £10 and plug into a computer’s USB port. They allow data to be stored and transported between computers. External removable hard disk drives connect to the computer using a USB cable and cost around £50. They are approximately A5 size and powered by an external mains cable or an additional power supply USB. CDs and DVDs are inexpensive and hold a

Attaching your work to an email and sending it to yourself will send the file to your email provider where it will be stored. However, deleting this file from your computer’s email will, of course, remove it from your email provider’s storage. Some mobile phones can store files by connecting to your computer and acting as an external hard drive. You can also transfer files to and from your phone wirelessly via Bluetooth. Memory cards in many cameras or mobile phones will slot into your laptop and act as an external hard drive. Do not leave them in your computer in case the card goes missing along with your laptop. Keeping an up-to-date paper copy can be nearly as useful as electronic backup. You can print off your assignment as you make major changes to your work. Should you lose the original copy on your computer it would mean retyping, but at least you will have a fairly recent version. Once you have backup arranged, there is no reason why you cannot meet your assignment deadline – providing you complete your work on time NS Vincent Tremayne is a senior nurse adviser at NHS Direct march 30 :: vol 25 no 30 :: 2011 61

Better safe than sorry  
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