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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

About the MS221 exam

The exam was held in The Hague, there werea about 20 people taking the MS221 exam. There were 8 exams going on in total. Can't remember which ones. What was the crowd like? I suppose +/- 25% were like me... after-career type of people finally doing / studying what they really like / love. The rest were late 20-ers, early 30-ers going for their first degree, I suppose. MS221 is not a real math-exam, the S says it all: Math Sciences, still there was only one ( 1 ) woman in the group. There was more balance in the other exams though.

The exam itself. Well, it was hard, hard, HARD! Everybody was still writing after three hours. I just finished the last question at 17.30. Wow, did time fly! I didn't know time could go -that- fast. The questions were as expected just as I predicted in an earlier post. 12 + 2 questions in three hours is a lot. No time to check, double-check, evaluate and play around with the exercises as I was used to when doing TMA's.

A distinction is impossible. I underestimated the time-pressure component. There is no time to think all you can do is robotically do the exercise as if on auto-pilot. But you can train for this so I think distinctions will be possible in future exams.

I am confident I'll pass but on a lower grade I had in mind. I am 200% motivated to continue my mathematics study. Either Pure Mathematics (60) + Groups and Symmetry (30) or maybe just Pure Mathematics (60) depending on other commitments.

The question on group theory was really easy, I saw all answers immediately in a flash, but writing all the answers down still took me 10 minutes ( or more ).

Anyway, my WIN of today is that I:
- am confident I'll pass
- am full of motivation to continue ( will register very soon )
- have learned from the experience in order to do better in future exams.

1 comment:

  1. I sat the MS221 exam today in York, and I concur with most of what you can say. None of it was particularly hard, and under TMA conditions, it would have been a case of getting just about full marks. However, the time pressure made it a different story.

    For some inexplicable reason I had a complete mental blank on the double angle 6 point question, and didn't answer any of it - all I can put it down to is pressure, as in hindsight it was probably the easiest question there!

    It sounds as if you did okay, so congratulations. I'm not sure how the marking works, but is your course result the average of your exam and your TMA marks? If so, I got 97% average on the TMAs, so presuambly 73% on the exam would be enough for a distinction at 85%. Not that I think I got 73%, but it would be nice to know the principle!


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