Friday, January 20, 2012


Remember the other day when I was saying there's nothing worse than opening an exam paper and not being able to do the first question? Well I stand corrected...

Once I'd be given the right exam paper (yes, out of 3 exams that's 2 where I've not had the right paper at the beginning, they worked my extra time out wrong again as well!), I opened section A. Got to question 6 before I could confidently answer the whole question (coincidently or otherwise, the first 5 questions from were from one half of the module and the second from the other). Thankfully I managed to reel off answers question 6-10!

The for section B, this was a straight choice - 1 question from 2, so only answering questions on half the module. Went for the question based on the half that I couldn't do in the section A. That sounds like an odd thing to do doesn't it? Not when you consider that the reason I couldn't do questions 1-5 is that they were all based on 1 tiny piece of the module (as in not even 1 lecture's worth), that had never come up in a past exam. The choice was remarkably straight forward - there was a derivation that I knew I wouldn't be able to do in question 1 (which I chose), but question 2, although on my preferred area of the module (statistical thermodynamics) the questions were odd and a bit ambiguous looking so I went for kinetics given that a chunk of the marks was for doing 2 lots of stead state approximation which I'd be practising!

This question did also involve drawing 2 graphs, yes 2 graphs in a 90 minutes exam (thankfully I had extra time!). Not that I could draw the second graph (well I could draw the graph but couldn't work out what to plot to get a straight line!). My maths logic said 1 thing, so I plotted it and it didn't work, tried to just work out out arithmetically as well but still didn't work. Then spent some time just trying different things, trial and error style in hope but I just couldn't get it to work. That wasn't the only section where my maths failed me either. Took far too long to work out what the intercept on a graph was going to be. I hate logs!

All of this was not helped by the fact my calculator is broken. Pretty sure I was on the verge of a panic attack when it died mid calculation. Think it's just a loose connection as it kept going on and off, depending how I pressed it! Might investigate and try and fix it - will take back up calculator to next exam though!

Was one good thing about the exam though - one of the invigilators looked like one of the mexican Chuckle brothers. Was quite amusing and probably explains the lack of organisation!

OK, and breathe. Exam is all over now. Just one to go next week.

In other news I had a phone call from HR at the hospital where I'm sorting out volunteering. Occupational health have decided they want to assess me (suppose that's what happens when you want to work in a hospital...). I'm sure they won't have a problem with me working when they see me, but it means I now have to go home next week seen as that's the only time off I've got between now and Easter (good thing I don't have exams all week like some people!), that means faffing about getting trains seen as I don't have my car here any more. Just hassle I really didn't want when I was hoping to just chill out for a few days between exams and lectures and labs starting!

OK and breathe again. I appear to be feeling a tad stressed this evening!

Photo time...a bit short of inspiration today - if I was allowed my phone in the exam I'd had taken a picture of the fail of an exam paper (or my fail at maths!), but we're not so here's what cheered me up when I got home!

I'm off to Derby tomorrow (for Nottingham's GEM open day), and then revision for Tuesday starts on Sunday so only time left to chill is tonight. Going to curl up with something good on TV, a hot chocolate and some pain killers and then hit the hay early.

Sorry, I got a bit carried away there, still, I feel better now!

"See" you tomorrow folks!

1 comment:

  1. I was once in a quantum physics exam in the great hall where the lighting was so poor that no ones solar calculator would work, there were ten battery powered calculators and the staff swapped them between us as the exam went on so you had to write out your sums for one part of the question and do the next bit before you could calculate anything. Also the same year they left out a paragraph with all the data out of the introduction to astronomy paper so the question read.... A patch of sky is emitting X-rays, calculate the age, size and density of the universe. Absolute carnage. At least you've got a weekend nom good luck for gem