Sunday, April 01, 2012

How to get good grades in your exams

Thought this might interest those submitting for your second semester modules since it's a universal theme.

1. Read the fine print of what's required and talk to colleagues. If an essay says 1500 words and you create 2500 that may be viewed as not disciplined and may lose you marks.

2. Wow yourself and others.  Surprise yourself by creating something exceptional, but don't be blinded by your own invention. Seek advice, the wisdom of crowd from others. If the work you've produced was too easy, then look at it again.

3. Hand in your work on time and check and double check before submission.

4. Use your work, particularly if you're publishing online to impress future employers. And if that is the case ensure there's a strong sense of denotation as to whom that employer might be. If it's a website, who are you and is it obvious what your strengths are so anyone might guess a probable employer. Makes recommendation easier as well.

5. Enjoy the process. This is the last time you'll probably undertake such voluminous work, before your  career. Critique in the literary objective sense, rather than the rhetorical yellow journalism method.

6. Reflect on what you've done and write it up whether you've been asked to or not. Reflective writing is the art of philosophical musings, where you the "self" asserts qualities discovered and refined along the way. It is storytelling par excellence of the autobiographical kind.

7. Look to  industry standard rather than the academic ceiling. If it's the academic ceiling you're aiming for, you could do brilliantly but that might not make you industry-ready. Of course that all depends on how practically and theoretically-orientated your course is to industry.

8. Ask when you're unsure and have consulted with friends, rather than sending 80 emails to your Professors and lecturers, as at this time of the year she will be inundated with emails. The more organised lecturers would have tried to supply as much info on modules course site or blackboard.

Obviously there are occasions when you'll be unsure and need to ask your lecturer will be paramount.

9. Remember profs and lecturers have two personalities, the lecturer and the marker. Sometimes they meld, often they don't. So don't be ambiguous. Remember the art of storytelling and examples given when storytelling. Lecture's are readers too. Their job is to help you along, so the marking regime is based on parameters that meet those requirements.

10. Get yourself a drink and talk with friends and lecturing team about the term and what may lay in store in the future. The lecture room is just the tip of the iceberg for the career ahead, and keep in contact.

The industry is pretty small and you never know when you'll walk into that job and find the lecturer you left years ago sitting, waiting for the morning meeting.  One of our lecturing team did this last year moving over to CNN.