Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Portfolio Pains

What it feels like when you finish an examination for your portfolio and you try to get the radiographer to sign it.

Stardate: 91875.79

So, I'm in my last week of placement for this block, and this week is my second one in clinical skills. This is basically a week where you can take on real examinations, just a little slower, and focus on assessment techniques, as you are with a lecturer practitioner, and not on a busy department. It's actually a really good opportunity to get examinations signed off for your portfolio, and brush up on what you know, which catches up on you really quickly.

It also allows you to work with students from other placement sites and see the variations, as every Trust has their own Local Rules and protocols regarding examinations and safety etc. For example, where I'm placed, we may do different routine projections for an examination to another site, or technique may vary. Again, it all depends on where you're placed, and what the radiographers there have shown you.

The realisation has pretty much finally dawned on me that being a student radiographer is actually really hard! Balancing 7 weeks of holiday, placements, lectures, travel and expenses claims, revision, portfolios "social life", hobbies and sleeping into one academic year is not an easy task. In fact, it's knackering. Especially for students like me, who are crazy enough to have a part-time job too!

Getting portfolios filled in can be difficult for some sections, especially ours, as where I'm placed, certain types of examinations are few and far between, e.g. spines. Sure, you see plenty of chests, knees etc, but when a spine comes in, everyone wants to do it! Luckily, I'm almost done with signing off my portfolio, I just need a few more unaided examinations, then I'll take on the assessment run! (Better not leave it until the last minute.)

It's amazing how quickly a year goes by, as although it feels like September was ages ago, it also feels like it was yesterday I was standing in General X-Ray getting in everyone's way! We've got two weeks of holiday for Easter (I don't have a clue what I'm going to do for two completely free weeks!), then two weeks of lectures, an assessment week, and then all placement weeks until Summer!

I've got two more days to sign off as many things as I can, then I can relax for once (with revision sittings of course). If I can find the time, I may even go and watch the new 'Captain America: Winter Solider'!

Well, as I like to say... Geronimo and LLAP!

  1. The Hobbit, n.d. gif, viewed 9 April 2014,<>.


  1. Hiya, I've been reading your blog for a while now so thought I'd comment and say how great it is to get an insight into your course. I'm actually starting at leeds myself in September for the same course, so was great when I found your blog!
    Was just wondering if you think you've picked the right career for you do you think? I've been thinking for so long about what to do and love the idea of radiography but am scared of making the wrong decision for a career! Also, is this your first degree? What made you get into radiography?

    Cheers, B

  2. Hi B!
    Thank you for the feedback :) I'm glad it's been helpful for you, and it's looks like I'll be seeing you around in September! Well done for getting in to Leeds.
    Personally, I'm really enjoying my course, it's dynamic and interesting, so I definitely think I picked the right career, as there's always room to advance yourself, even after graduation. This is my second degree programme, but my first degree I will complete, as I went to UCLan for one year and did Japanese with Health Studies (it wasn't challenging enough, and I really wanted to do Radiography instead).
    I got into Radiography by being exposed to the departments when I was younger, as I had a thyroid issue and hip problems (not to mention many broken bones in my youth!), so I found it all really fascinating. Then after doing my work experience, it just solidified that I wanted to do this sort of job.

    If you have any other questions feel free to e-mail me at: :)


  3. Thanks for your reply :)
    Yeah, i'm sure I'll see you around in September! It definitely sounds like an interesting course and a good career, so I'm looking forward to it. I also went to uni for a little bit actually (just a few months!) to do history, and realised it really wasn't for me. I like how with radiography there's a career path there already, even with all the different fields you can go in to, so it gives me a real goal to aim for - if that makes sense :)
    I'll definitely email you at some point.
    Good luck with the rest of your year!


    1. Hi Beth,
      Sorry my reply was so slow, exams and placement are getting on top of me at the minute :)
      Glad you're looking it forward to it, and once you're here you'll soon get to see everything, especially once your placement site gets confirmed :)
      Take care,