The two countries that I have chosen to compare and contrast are Japan and Kenya. Japan is a MEDC and Kenya is a LEDC. MEDC stands for More Economically Developed Country and MEDCs have higher GDP per capita and higher standard of living than LEDCs which stands for Less Economically Developed Country. To identify weather a country is a MEDC or LEDC, we use indicators such as GDP per capita, infant mortality rate and life expectancy.
A development of a country shows how much a country grew over the years. The development of a country is shown by different indicators such as birth rate, literacy rate and life expectancy. Kenya has been a LEDC more than 60 years ago and it still is a LEDC. Even though it is a LEDC, Kenya has gotten closer to MEDC compared to 60 years ago, which is in 1955. Its HDI, GDP per capita and other indicators have been increasing, but it still is not a MEDC. On the other hand, Japan has been a MEDC for more than 60 years. 60 years ago, Japan was in place of Kenya now. It has developed more in last 60 years and it is getting closer to the top.
Birth rate of a country is the total number of births per 1,000 population. Kenya, which is a LEDC, has the birth rate of 36 and Japan, which is a MEDC, has the birth rate of 8 births per woman. This shows that LEDCs have much higher birth rate than MEDCs. As you can see on the Gapminder graph, the birth rate seems to be affected by the GDP per capita of the country. In the graph, Kenya and other LEDCs have high birth rate but less GDP per capita, when in MEDCs such as Japan, the birth rate is less but GDP per capita is very high. I think this happens because if the country is wealthy, there will be good medical care and so mothers will not need many children but if the country is poor, there will not be as good medical care as in the MEDCs and so mothers will need to give birth to many children. Another reason can be because of the roles of children in MEDCs and LEDCs. In LEDCs, there are many children that work and not go to school. The parent will not have to work as hard if they had few children that helps them. However in MEDCs, all children would goto school and the parent would try to get them into good schools and good universities for their future. Going to good school and universities costs a lot. In another words, in MEDCs, the children are not quantities but qualities when in LEDCs, its the opposite.
Population growth rate is the amount of increase in population of a country, that is expressed by percentages. The population growth of Kenya is 2.7% and the population growth of Japan is -0.2%. The Gapminder graph on the right shows that when the GDP per capita of the country is high, the population growth is low. I think this is because if the GDP per capita is high, it shows that the country is wealthy and has money to spend on medical care. If the country has good medical care, the infant mortality will be less, so the mother does not have to give births to many children. Therefore if the birth rate of children is low, the population growth will always be low as well.
Infant mortality rate is the number of deaths of children under the age of five year old per 1,000 live births. The infant mortality rate of Kenya is 51 and Japan’s infant mortality rate is 2. Like the other indicators before such as birth rate, high GDP per capita means good medical care and if there is good medical care, the infant mortality rate will surely be less.
GDP per capita stands for gross domestic product and it is the income of the country divided by the population, showing that if everyone had equal share of money, each person will get the GDP per capita. The GDP per capita of Kenya is 1,245.51 USD and the GDP per capita of Japan is 38,633.71 USD. This shows how MEDCs such as Japan are much more wealthier than LEDCs such as Kenya.
HDI stands for human development index and it is a indicator that measure and rank the countries based on life expectancy, literacy rate and GDP per capita. The HDI of Kenya is 0.535 and Kenya is 147th of the countries. The HDI of Japan in 0.890 and Japan is 17th of the countries.
Fertility rate is the number of births per 1,000 women. In Kenya the fertility rate is 4.5 children per woman when in Japan, the fertility rate is 1.4 children per woman. The graph shows that the higher the GDP per capita, the less the fertility rate. I think this happens because if a country is wealthy, they will have good medical care and therefore less infant mortality rate. If your child is very likely to live long, there is no need for parents to have any children. However if the infant mortality is low, the parent needs few children so that not all of them will die. Also in MEDCs, there are many people who choose not to be married. There are many reasons for it, but because people are not marrying, there will not be many children born in that country. Therefore it makes low fertility rate.
Life expectancy is the average period a person lives in a country. Kenya’s life expectancy is 61.08 years. Japan’s life expectancy is 84.74 years. The life expectancy is mostly affected by the quality of the country’s medical care. If the country has a very good medical care, it is very likely that people are going to live longer, like in Japan. However if the country has bad medical care, it is likely that the country will have low life expectancy. The quality of the medical care is depended on how wealthy the country is because if the country is poor, they will not have enough money to spend on medical care. Another reason of MEDCs having higher life expectancy than LEDCs’ life expectancy can be because of nutrition. In MEDCs, most people are able to get food and get nutrition because they are wealthy enough to buy food. However in LEDCs, there are many people who does not have enough money to buy food, and therefore not enough nutrition. Nutrition is very important in living a long life. So, the country with low GDP per capita will have low life expectancy.
Literacy rate is the percentage of adults who can understand, read and write statements. Literacy rate depends on the country’s school enrolment rate. Kenya’s literacy rate is 72.2% and Japan’s literacy rate is 99%. Japan is one of the countries with highest literacy rate. A country’s literacy rate is affected by the GDP per capita. GDP per capita shows the wealthiness of a country and if a country is wealthy, they will have more schools and more people enrolling in schools. However if the country is poor, there will not be many schools for people to goto and people will not have enough money to goto schools. Also, in some of the LEDCs, there are wars going on. When wars are happening, people do not take education but is fighting. Therefore literacy in LEDCs are lesser than the literacy rate in MEDCs.
From these indicators used to indicate how developed a country is, I have found many differences between MEDCs and LEDCs. In LEDCs, the birth rate, the population growth rate, the infant mortality rate and fertility rate are much higher than in MEDCs. However the GDP per capita, HDI, life expectancy and literacy rate are much higher in MEDCs than in LEDCs. I noticed that the main reason for the differences is because of the difference in GDP per capita. Every country need money in many ways such as medical care, education, infrastructure and so on. However in LEDCs, there are not enough money to provide these things and that makes those countries LEDCs. MEDCs have enough money to provide what is needed, so the people of that country will be more educated, will be able to live longer and so on. How wealthy a country is seems to depend a lot on its development.
- “Birth Rate, Crude (per 1,000 People).” Birth Rate, Crude (per 1,000 People). World Bank Group, 2015. Web. 24 Nov. 2015. <http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.DYN.CBRT.IN>.
- “Fertility Rate, Total (births per Woman).” Fertility Rate, Total (births per Woman). The World Bank, 2015. Web. 26 Nov. 2015. <http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.DYN.TFRT.IN>.
- “Human Development Reports.” Human Development Index (HDI). United Nations Development Programme, 2014. Web. 26 Nov. 2015. <http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/human-development-index-hdi-table>.
- Rosling, Hans. “Share Graph.” Gapminder. Gapminder, n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2015. <http://www.gapminder.org/world/>.
- “Literacy Rate, Adult Total (% of People Ages 15 and Above).” Literacy Rate, Adult Total (% of People Ages 15 and Above). The World Bank, 2015. Web. 26 Nov. 2015. <http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SE.ADT.LITR.ZS>.
- “Mortality Rate, Infant (per 1,000 Live Births).” The World Bank. The World Bank, 2015. Web. 27 Nov. 2015. <http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.DYN.IMRT.IN>.
- “Population Growth (annual %).” Population Growth (annual %). World Bank Group, 2015. Web. 24 Nov. 2015. <http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.POP.GROW>.
My first Field Studies in YIS was very exciting and I enjoyed it very much. The activities we did were mostly new to me and I am sure that my comfort zone has expanded a lot during the Field Studies. From all the activities that I have done in Field Studies, there were three activities that I found especially challenging as well as activities that I learned a lot from. The three activities were rafting, canyoning and mountain biking.
In rafting, there were few difficulties, such as rowing at the same time so that the boat will move forward and keep the boat balanced. To overcome this difficulty, we communicated with each other. Communicating with each other helped us row at the same time because we said “1,2,1,2” and we rowed at 1 and came back to the starting position in 2. Also our guide communicated with us by giving signs such as “Duck down!” or “To the left!” and we did as she told us to so that we would be able to go through the river. By communicating with each other, we learned a lot about each other as well and I was able to make new friends. Communicating with others will also be helpful in other areas of life, such as playing sports. When you are playing team sports such as volleyball and basketball, I think it is very important to communicate with each other so everyone knows what is going on and know their roles. It can be also applied in other places such as debating and doing a speech. By communicating you can get inspired or persuaded which might change your life.
In canyoning, the difficulties were to actually do canyoning and making it to the end. This was the firsttime canyoning for me and I was very nervous and scared at first because of the hard rocks, strong current and high jumps. When I got to the 20m waterfall, I was very scared but my team members encouraged me, saying “You can do it!” and I think that helped a lot. Because of the encouragements, I was able to do it. I thought that if everyone in front of me has done it and they were okay, I thought that I was going to be okay. Encouragements from others and encouraging others can also apply in other places in life such as with friends and families. Everyone faces challenges and difficulties through life and there are times when we can not overcome them by ourselves. However, if we had encouragement from friends or families saying “I believe in you. You can do it!” we will feel better and we might be able to overcome the challenge. Encouragements can also give hope. For example, if someone was taking an exam and they were nervous, encouragements can give them hope and make them do well on the exam. As listed before, there are may ways encouragement can help us through life.
Lastly, in mountain biking it was very difficult to go down the steep slope and not give up. It was a long time since I rode a bike and I was very nervous. There were many times when I thought that I would not be able to do it. My bike slipped and sometimes, I was about to fall. What helped me overcome the difficulties was thinking of the accomplishment I would feel after doing this and expanding my comfort zone. I learnt that I have to be a risk taker to expand my comfort zone and that I would feel accomplishment after doing it. I think that this can be applied in other areas of life such as when you are trying new things. Life is full of new things and you have to be a risk taker and take risks or else, you will be stuck in one place and not move forward. I like to think of how I would feel after finishing the thing I will be trying so that I would be abel to take risks. If I overcome one challenge, I would also be confident and would be able to believe in myself. If I was able to believe in myself I will be able to overcome more and more challenges and that will lead to my happiness.
For me, the Field Studies was fun and exciting as well as very educational. I was able to learn a lot of new things and make new friends. I was able to expand my comfort zone as well. Therefore I am looking forward to the next Field Studies and learn more new things and expand more my comfort zone.
Overall, the elevator assessment went not so bad but not wonderful for my group. There were many ups and downs and there were times when we had different opinions and had a little argument. However, I think that our characters worked well together because each one of us had very different characters and we managed to work well. My character is a business woman who worked in a company and her boss is overly strict with time and fires anyone who was late for work or meetings. Because of having a boss like that, my character is obsessed with time and a little crazy about it. She even counts the seconds and minuets so she would not lose her job. When the elevator stops, she gets depressed because she knows that she is going to be late. When it starts moving, she is very happy to find out that she has around one minutes before her meeting so she runs out of the elevator. I think I was able to show these changes in our scene so I think that it went fine for my character.
In the elevator scene I used things that we learned in class. For example, I used stereotype in creating the character. My stereotype of a business woman was that she was very punctual and is always full of scheduled meetings and work. I exaggerated this stereotype and made my character obsessed and crazy with time. I think that I was able to exaggerate enough to show that my character was a little crazy.
I also used displayed attitude in the scene, especially when the elevator stopped and when it started moving. When the elevator stopped, I displayed my attitude that my character was depressed by crouching down and mumbling to herself. When the elevator started moving, I showed that she was happy by standing up quickly and smiling. By displaying attitude, I was able to tell the audience exactly how my character felt at each time and I think that helped the audience understand the scene more.
My character also had motivation which was to be not late for her meeting. I showed this by always checking the time and counting the minutes and seconds. I also tapped my foot when waiting for the elevator and paced around the elevator to show that my character was very obsessed with time.
Finally, I thought of the vocal delivery. When the elevator stopped and my character got depressed, I used small voices. When the elevator started moving and my character got happier, I used bigger voices. Also, when the elevator stopped I used a voice that was pessimistic and negative, and when the elevator started moving, I used an optimistic and positive voice. Thinking about vocal delivery made me think of what exactly my character thought at that time and that helped me understand and make my character.
I made a lot of progress during the unit. Before the unit I was very scared of acting in front of an audience. I was embarrassed and I was not good at acting to start with. However as the unit went on, I realised that I did not have to be scared and that everyone was at least a little bit scared, like me. Then I felt like I can do it and I was able to act in front of an audience. I also learnt how to work well together with people. At the start there was a person in my group who I have never been in a group with and I was not sure I would be able to work well together as a team but I was able to work well in the end because I learnt how to collaborate during the unit. There were many challenges I faced during the unit as well. For example, I had to change my character a few times so that I would speak more in the scene. At first I was a student at university, then I was a person who had part time jobs and finally I became the business woman I am now. Another challenge was that my character was so different from me. I am not obsessed with time as much as my character is. It was hard to act someone different from me because I can only imagine what she would feel and do and not know exactly what she would do. Therefore it was hard to act but I think I managed the best I can. Lastly, during the unit, there was some arguments between the group members. It was not anything big, but there were arguments. However we were able to solve everything in the end by talking to each other and coming up with the best solution. I have a lot of places of improvements too. I could have acted better and be more persuasive. My acting was okay but not brilliant so I would like to improve on that. As I look at the video now, I realise that there are many times when I was not looking directly at the audience so I would like to make eye contact with the audience next time. I would also like to use bigger voices because in the video there were places that was hard to hear. Moreover, I would like to be confident or at least look confident. In the scene, I look as I felt, which was a little bit scared, and does not look confident so I would like to improve that as well.
I would like to use the challenges and mistakes that I had during the unit and learn from it so that I would not repeat my mistakes the next time. I would also like to improve on what I have wrote earlier and be a better actor.