Setting Personal Learning Goals/Activities/Activity Sheet 1

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Autobiography - Getting clear on your motivations for learning

Being clear about your reasons for learning, and what you want to achieve from your learning is important if you want to get the most from your educational experience. Setting learning goals helps you to be clear about this and to prioritise your time effectively.

Complete this activity now to get you started thinking about your long-term goals.

Setting long-term goals

Using a piece of paper, jot down your

  • Long-term goals
  • Campus, community, or other resources that are available to you to help you accomplish these goals.

List as many goals and resources as you wish.

Setting Semester Goals

The second part of determining your goals is to take a look at your goals for the semester. Wherever you are in the semester, take a moment to determine what you want to accomplish before it is over. At the same time, keep in mind why you are in college and what values are articulated in your reason for being in college. (The questions of why you are in college and how you can maximize your college experience are considered in Autobiography Activity 1)

On a piece of paper list

  • Long-term goals
  • Reminder - Why I am in College
  • Values articulated in my reason(s) for being in college
  • Semester Goals: as many as you wish


The next task is to determine what obstacles may be in your way. Basically, you must ask yourself how you will go about accomplishing your semester goals given your skills, resources, and abilities. Then examine each obstacle and try to see it as a successful milestone or marker for that goal. You might also want to do the same thing for your long-term goals.

Download and complete the Skills, Abilities, Resources worksheet (PDF).

Now that you have outlined obstacles and thought about how they relate to your abilities and resources, take another moment to write a couple of paragraphs summarizing what you have learned. Using Microsoft Word, Open Office, or another text-editing program, assess these elements and reflect on the obstacles and the challenges you face.

Developing a Learning Strategy

The reason for articulating goals and identifying obstacles is to develop a strategy for achieving your goals. For example, one of your semester goals might be to accumulate twenty hours of community service during the semester that will count toward the eighty hours required for admittance to your degree program. Obstacles to this goal may include not being familiar with the local community as well as finding the time between now and the end of the semester. One strategy might include a visit to the Student Service Leadership Center, or to your advisor to talk about what opportunities might be available.

Try developing your own strategies for the goals and obstacles you have identified. List the goals, obstacles and strategies for overcoming each obstacle on a piece of paper.

Goal :
Obstacle(s) :
Strategy/Strategies :

Bringing it all together

Using Microsoft Word, Open Office, or another text-editing program consolidate your autobiography, skills and resources, goals (both long-term and short-term), and any obstacles to these goals and strategies that you may employ to overcome these obstacles.

Try to ensure that you make the relationships between all aspects clear especially the links between your autobiography, long-term and short-term goals.

You may copy & paste from other documents to complete this activity.