The thoughts, opinions, happenings, and just plain ramblings of a seemingly boring person.

1 down, 2 to go

Did my HIST2606 exam today, got my INFS3200 (Advanced Database Systems) exam tomorrow.

Today's exam has to be my most blas? attempt at an exam in my whole academic life. I had most-likely passed the course already (see yesterday's post), but as i approach the completion of my degrees I seem to be less and less motivated to do exams.

I would have chalked this kind of attitude up to almost have finished my degrees, but the thing is that I do still do take assignments seriously. I dunno, it's just something with me and exams, I tend to not take them too seriously.

This exam today was unpleasant in many ways. I sorta focused my study on an aspect of the American Civil War that I was certain was going to be a question on the exam. This exam had 12 questions and we had to answer 3. I planned on doing a WWI question and a WWII question and do one on the American Civil War. I pretty well know both the World Wars, so all I mainly studied was stuff on the American Civil War (which btw is really quite interesting and fascinating).

I'm usually pretty good in anticipating these exam questions, but today i got it wrong. The Civil War question was something along the lines of: "Generals on both sides of the American Civil War aimed to emulate Napoleon and his strategies. In what sense, if any, were the strategies actually used in the civil war 'Napoleonic'?" Not even looking at Napoleon in my study, I was screwed for this question.

I ended up doing both WW questions, and for the third I chose the one about the American War of Independence.

It was even more unpleasant in that the guy on front of me had pretty excruciatingly severe body-odour, and when your sitting less than half a metre away from this guy you sorta want to hurry up and get out of there as fast as you can.

I've really got to say that my answers for all 3 questions that I put down were pretty sub-standard for me. Can you tell that i'm not taking my history courses too seriously?? (especially the ones that i've passed before the exam...)

9 thoughts on “1 down, 2 to go”

  1. of course, you could have answered the question differently. thinking outside the square, there's the 'stupid exam' route:
    "the strategies were not napoleonic whatsoever, and any attempt to compare the two is substandard."
    or, of course, there's the 'alternate definition' route:
    "far more interesting than the strategies of napoleon used was the entire ethics behind the madness - unity."
    i mean, really, you did have a couple of alternatives.

  2. yes but if he answered the question like the 'alternate' answer it would not have answered the question that the examiners had asked. it would be like him saying,

    'no. i don't like the question that you put down, so i'll answer a better question that i just thought up'
    i'm not sure about the history department at UQ ut in the nursing department at QUT if you don't answer the question that they asked you, you don't get any marks for that question.

    btw lucas you don't have to say 'interesting and fascinating' as they mean pretty much the same thing it's a bit of a redundancy.

    well that's my rant for today.

  3. Andrew: As Rolando states, at UQ if you don't really answer the question, you don't really get the marks. You could put down the best structured, professionally worded piece, fully referenced, with great material in there, but if you can't answer the question then too bad.

    Of your 'stupid exam' response, because they were essay questions and not short answer, i doubt I would have enough info to put down to get me beyond the first paragraph...

    Rolando: although similar, 'interesting' and 'fascinating' are two quite different words, and can have vastly differing connotations.

  4. firstly, the 'alternate definition' one had something to do with the question - "...aimed to emulate Napoleon...".
    secondly, the 'stupid exam' route, admittedly, was probably something that you would have had to study specifically for. and if you knew the question well enough to say 'stupid exam', then you probably also knew it well enough to answer the question.
    thirdly, 'fascinating', i would have to think, includes 'interesting' (not vice-versa, however). if something fascinates, chances are it interests as well. what is fascinating without being interesting? (and none of this 'well, i'm sure it's a fascinating topic, but i'm not interested in it' stuff (or vice versa). that's called 'cheating'.)

  5. I beg to differ: something can be fascinating but not be interesting.

    For example: 'It fascinates me me how a printer works', doesn't necesarily mean or imply that also 'It interests me how a printer works'. Fascination and interest can have totally different and disjoint meanings.

    But i doubt that I can satisfactorily convince you... :p

  6. i didn't say they meant exactly the same thing, i just meant that in the context in which you used them lucas they are pretty much interchangable. it depends on the context in which they are used.

  7. if something fascinates you, it also interests you.
    if we take your hypothetical example (which only for the purposes of this argument will i take up), a fascination with a printer's functioning presupposes an interest in said printer's functioning.
    they do, indeed, have different meanings. also, in context especially - as rummy has touched on - they differ only in degree.
    however, i cannot see a situation where a thing can be fascinating without also being interesting. they do seem to differ in degree - or, perhaps, specificity (the latter prolly being more accurate)



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