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Archive for September, 2008|Monthly archive page

UCD Electives Testimonials Part 3 (Arts and Computing)

In UCD on September 3, 2008 at 5:54 am

Assalamualaikum wbt and Salam Sejahtera!

Hope previous posts helped. I hope those who are into arts or computing were not feeling left behind because here are some selections for you! As usual, we will give overall review and some insight about the classes and exams. Again, the rating system is 1-5, for Difficulties [1 for easiest, 5 for hardest], for Coursework [1 for least demanding, 5 for most demanding] and Overall [1 for least recommended, 5 for most recommended].

1. Visualisation and Photographic Technique (ARCT10080) [School of Architecture]

You will learn basic and advance photographic techniques and the equipments that can make it possible. It will also nurture your ‘arts’ and interpreting skills.

Very exciting and laid back lectures where we usually learn about the technique and look at loads of wonderful pictures and some videos.Some tutorials to apply photoshop. Then do the field-trip for the final project which account for 100% of the final marks. So its all about your technique and presentation. (You don’t really have to “study” for this.) Don’t worry if you don’t have the finest of gears, the marks will be given according to ur camera’s capabilities.

A good learning curve for those who like to take or be in a photograph 😛

Difficulties:2

Coursework:3

Overall:5

Reviewers’ result: C, C+ [learned a lot so i dont care about the result.]

2. Software Engineering Project (COMP 10050) [School of Computing]

Very interesting but need to have good knowledge of JAVA and C++ programming first. The class is mostly lecture based, they are ok, but not that helpful.

There is no Final exam, so 100% if from your project. The lecturer is very strict and stingy 😛

Difficulties:5

Coursework:5

Overall:1

Reviewers’ result: [Haha, don’t wanna talk abt it :p ]

3. Introduction to Programming 1 (COMP10010)

The subject sounds horrific and terrible. The word programming looks as if you are going to face an unlimited amount of unknown codes. Am I right? Haha. The truth is this subject will give you an A+ in your final exam. Seriously. It is an easy subject though you are a new user to the computer world. You will learn about Java. Well..if you are using sony ericsson then you should know this. After all, this subject will only give you a rough idea on java script. It would not make you an expert. It is an ‘introduction’!

You will have two lectures per week. Each lecture lasts for an hour. And you will also have a lab tutorial once a week where you would apply what you have learnt during the lectures.

Weekly lab tutorial would account for 40% of your final mark. And the written exam at the end of the semester would account for 60%.

Difficulties:3

Coursework:2.5

Overall:2.5

Reviewers’ result:A+

Sadly, this will be the last installment for this series for the time being. I’m running out of reviews but we definitely will have some coming later, so, keep coming to see if the reviews are updated.

Should you wish to contribute your reviews (yes please… (“,)), sent them to-> surveyor328@gmail.com

[These review were edited and merged. However where they conflict, I will post both or more reviews.]

UCD Electives Testimonials Part 2 (Science and Maths)

In UCD on September 2, 2008 at 4:04 pm

Assalamualaikum wbt and Salam Sejahtera!

Last time we had testimonials for languages courses, now lets look at the testimonials of some science and maths courses. As the class structures for these courses are different, we will give overall review and some insight about the classes and exams. Again, the rating system is 1-5, for Difficulties [1 for easiest, 5 for hardest], for Coursework [1 for least demanding, 5 for most demanding] and Overall [1 for least recommended, 5 for most recommended]

1. Linear Algebra and Geometry Level 1(MATH 10050)

Easy if you like vectors. Suitable for Maths lovers out there as you’ll learn new things but still within the easy range. Frankly, I didn’t study until the last minute but thanks to the past year papers I passed!

Classes are usually in the morning and at lunch time, three hours a week. One advice, take down all the notes in the lecture even when you don’t understand in the first place because in the revision week, when you combine with the past year papers you can still master the topics. An hour long tutorial each week does help too.

Marks are taken 100% from the exit exam. So you can relax a bit during the semester till the revision week. Trying out the past year papers is a must! Questions are being set in the similar fashion only the numbers change. As all Mathematics branch, practices are essential.

[From another reviewer] Its an easy course initially because you are learning vector all over again. But its getting harder towards the end, so if you really into maths, then do it. For me, I regretted choosing it.

Difficulties: 2.25

Coursework:3

Overall: 3.5

Reviewer’s Result: C-,A+

2. Physical and Forensics Anthropology (ANAT 10030)

A very interesting elective and highly recommended to all medical student as it gives u the basic knowledge that can help u in many ways trough out medicine. Need to learn a bit about evolution and primates thou.

Most of the lectures were very interesting with good content and presentation. There were some boring lectures, but it really depends on the lecturer. We attend lectures and examine bones . The exams was quite easy.There is the internal assessment that is very fun (Card signing style, investigation style) and final MCQ.

Difficulties:2.5

Coursework:1.5

Overall:4.5

Reviewer’s Result:A+, A+

3. Biology for the Modern World (BIOL 10070)

Tutorial once in 2 weeks. Need to submit 2 pages essay everytime. Loads of discussions.

Very interesting but have a lot of sensitive issues discussed, like religions and evolution. But its a good chance to voice out your opinions.
MCQ.Easy.

Difficulties:3

Coursework:3

Overall:4

Reviewer’s Result:A+

4. Food Diet and Health (FDSC10010)

A useful elective for medical students (and those who wants to know what n how they are eating 😛 We will learn basic info (i.e. food pyramid, food nutrients, about food products e.g Milk, cheese, meat)

Internal assessment (MCQ and very short answers), Same for Final

Difficulties:1

Coursework:1

Overall:5

Reviewer’s Result:A+

5. Basic Principle of Trauma (MDSA 20050)

One of my most favorite elective yet.Very interesting as we will learn so basic principle of a trauma injury and how to manage it.Very useful for pre-clinical and clinical years.It is a bit hard for some but I would recommend it anytime to anyone, all u need is an interests.

Internal assessment (EMQ), Final (EMQ and short answers.)

Difficulties:4

Coursework:2

Overall:5

Reviewer’s Result:A-

6. Differential & Integral Calculus (MATH 10060)

I regret opting for this course. It was harder than I thought and you not only have to know how to solve the problems, but also how to define and derive formulas. And for me, that was the hardest part as there were too many to remember and with the restricted time that I could allocate for electives, it made things more difficult.

There will be 3 hours of lecture every week and an hour long tutorial. You can’t afford missing a single lecture as it will jeopardise your understanding on the topic taught. Attendance to tutorials is compulsory and marks of the worksheets are included in the final marks.

There’s a mid-term exam consisting of 10 or so questions. The end of term exam was very difficult and I wished I never took this elective.

Difficulties:5

Coursework:5

Overall:1 (Definitely not recommended unless you are a Mathematics genius!)

Reviewer’s Result:C+

7. Introductory Statistics (STAT 10010)

Very easy. IB or A level standard.The exams questions are subjective but very easy because they tend to use past years with minor changes to the figures.

Difficulties:2

Coursework:2

Overall:4

Reviewer’s Result:A+

8. Introduction of Mechanics

If you like physics subjects, you can consider to choose this module as your elective. Some of the syllabus you might have learned in your previous institution.

The teacher is only posting incomplete notes in the Blackboard,so that you may attend the classes to get the answers. Only during the week before the study leave, the teacher might kindly post you the complete notes. It takes you 3 periods per week,1 hour per periods,which may consists of usual lectures and simple test.( 5 tests).

20% of the final mark comes from the simple tests, and 80% final exams, which consists of MCQs and written answers. I advise you to find and try past years papers since you may get the similar type of questions, or even “sebijik”!

Difficulties:2

Coursework:2

Overall:4

Reviewer’s Result:A+

9. Calculus and Statistics

It’s easy to score since it covers only basic things about Calculus & Statistics, even you might have learned most of the syllabus in your previous instituitions. The teacher is very helpful and not “boring” at all.

It takes you 3 periods per week,1 hour per periods,which may consists of usual lectures and tutorials followed by simple test.( 5 tutorials & tests, every even weeks). Usually there is a revision class during the week before study leave and it’s very important. So please attend especially if you always missed the previous classes.
20% of final marks is from the simple tests, and 80% final exams, which consists of MCQs and written answers. I advise you to find and try past years papers since you may get the similar type of questions, or even “sebijik”.

Difficulties:2

Coursework:2

Overall:4

Reviewer’s Result:A+

All right, thats all I have for now.ll return with more reviews , Insya-Allah. Should you wish to contribute your reviews , please sent to-> surveyor328@gmail.com

[These review were edited and merged. However where they conflict, I will post both or more reviews.]

UCD Electives Testimonials part 1 (Languages)

In UCD on September 2, 2008 at 9:28 am

Assalamualaikum and Salam Sejahtera!

In the beginning of every semesters, some UCDians will go haywire over their choice of electives. So, how to balance between your interest and prospect of getting good result (finding the easiest and less demanding elective)? Well, usually we ask for advices from our seniors…But now, we are bringing you some testimonials, just like in friendster, hehe.

So this series will work like this, we will give overall review, talk a bit about the classes and exams, then we rate them. Ratings for Difficulties are (1 easiest, 5 hardest), for Coursework (1 least demanding, 5 most demanding) and Overall rating.

In this post we will cater the language courses (not all courses now but this post will be updated), from Applied Language Centre. In overview, it will be an interactive 2 hours class of 15-25 people . Exams will be oral, aural and written.Most Ab Initio (No Prior Knowledge) courses are easy and fun, but they are favorites, so expect competitions. Classes usually start by learning characters, vocabularies, and pronunciations and end with activities like role-playing. we’ll be given workbook and access to Moodle (for audios and exercises). It gets harder in later stages. Also, you need to do a simple portfolio (5%) and participate actively in class (10%).

1. Japanese Ab Initio (LANG 10021)

The teacher made the class fun and interactive with creative activities. (She’s cute!) We even watched some Japanese videos, ete japanese snacks and sang karaoke in class! We were given small dictionary also. Homework is minimal. You need to memorise all hiragana, but some katakana and kanji. Oral and aural exams were easy. Written test need some work but do-able. If you’re an anime junkie, this is perfect for you.

Difficulties: 1

Coursework: 1

Overall: 5

Reviewer’s result: A-

2. Chinese Ab Initio (LANG 10020)

Fun and interactive but i found Chinese pronunciations quite hard. It was funny how the whole class tried to sound right .However the teacher is very nice and helpful. We hardly get any homework but practicing and memorising words. We learned to write characters too (its cool!) but in the exams, we only need to write some. But learning about the history of how the character was created was a bonus. Really easy to grasp and don’t worry if you don’t know a single Chinese word because after the course you will be able to even introduce your family. It was quite fun practising Chinese with your partners especially when your partner is not a Malaysian. Classes are easygoing and no stress guaranteed.

Practice makes perfect! Especially in written and oral exam. One advantage is that, you’ll only be examined on what you have learnt in class.

Difficulties: 1.67

Coursework: 1.67

Overall: 5

Reviewers’ results: A, B, A

3. Chinese L & C 2 (LANG 10160)

If you were good in Ab Initio, you be good in this. We learned to use Chinese for shopping and eating.We also get more new vocabularies on sports, directions, locations and holidays. We even learned how to bargain or complain about bad services! I think we can speak Chinese after this. We learned a lot.

Difficulties:4

Coursework: 1

Overall:3

Reviewers’ result: c+

4. Italian Ab Initio (LANG 10010)

The teacher speaks Italian ALL the time, even for explaining and expect you to understand.Loads of homework. The teacher assess us a lot ( orals,essays). Not recommended at all.

Difficulties:4

Coursework:5

Overall:2

Reviewer’s result:D

5. Spanish Ab Initio (LANG 10230)

Very easy for those who have a basic in Spanish, even if it’s only a few words that you picked up from watching telenovelas! (Its actually must if you already like saying “mi amor” or “que” all the time). Excellent choice of language to learn because of its wide usage across so many countries. Saves you when you go traveling to Spain, with the help of a dictionary of course. Didn’t spend too much time studying it.

The class was like learning ABC again, filling up the blanks and do some matching up words. The teacher is fun and very helpful in making sure you get the pronunciations right.

The teacher really helps you through the oral exam and for preparation before the written and aural exam. All handouts given during this session should be taken seriously, may be a lifesaver during the exams!

Difficulties:2.33

Coursework:2.67

Overall:4.67

Reviewer’s result: B+, C+, A-

6. Spanish Level 2

I took the course solely based on the reason of enjoying the ab initio stage (beginners). But it wasn’t a bed of roses. Stage 2 became a bit more serious with more handouts to be done and less word games played. Take this class if you love spanish and wish to take it a third language.You learn spanish in more mature topics. More grammar is focused so you must have the ab initio grammar at your fingertips.

Difficulties:4

Coursework:3

Overall:2

Reviewer’s result:C

7. Arabic Ab Initio (LANG 10080)

Overall it’s OK. Quiet easy on early part (learning Alif, Ba, Ta), but must work a little more when its come to vocabulary and grammar..For exams, focus more on exams and finals.Like all other language, it is very interesting and can take you places.

Difficulties:2

Coursework:2

Overall:5

Reviewers’ result:B+, B

8. English for Academic Purposes 4 (LANG 10510)

It is a very useful course. It is designed for those who has IELTS of band lower than 6.5 (look website for more info) Whats better, only international student (aka non native speakers of English) are eligible to register this module. So in your class, there will be people from all over the world. And its great opportunity to know other countries! Just by speaking that common language : English

As said before, it is international class. Though most of the time, Malaysians make up the majority. I’ve had classmates from Africans, Iranian, Poland, Chinese and many more.The teachers are nice and share interesting stories about Ireland and Europe history once in a while during class. If you’re the inquisitive one, this is the class for you!

Difficulties:1

Coursework:1

Overall:5

Reviewers’ result:A

9. English For Academic Purposes 5 (LANG 10040)

Not much difference with Stage 4. Still has international students (with Malaysians making the majority) and we had the same teacher as in Stage 4. But we discussed more mature issues such as religion, politics, cultural traditionals and marriage! Very interesting! You are not just learning the language but so much more.

Difficulties:2

Coursework:1

Overall:5

Reviewers’ result:B+ (expected A, but probably due to high passing mark for A)

10. Francais Ab Initio (French Basic Level)

Interesting since I had learned the second most important language in the world. The teacher is very committed,very helpful and very interesting.
It’s a small class of 20 students. The teacher might give you challenging tasks in class and as homeworks since studying a new language is not that easy. A lot of revisions and memorizing is a must to score this module. Take the opportunity to communicate in French in class and with the teacher& friends as much as you can.

Difficulties:4

Coursework:4

Overall:4

Reviewers’ result:B+

Okay folks, thats all for now. Ill return with more reviews (its your reviews after all), Insya-Allah. Should you wish to contribute your reviews (they are gonna be anonymous), please sent to-> surveyor328@gmail.com