16 January 2018


It was the end of the module. The exam! And then it was over. The first time I did the Palaeoceanography module; the only module that is only mine. I hoped it would go well! I had got a fair number of questions from students beforehand. A fair number was clearly preparing thoroughly!

I rode over fairly early. I didn't know this exam room. But it was indicated very well! It was in the old part of the university main building. It was a nice room! With a view. And it was very hot in there.

The exam room

 The view from the exam room

The lady who would scan the students' cards and take their attendance slips (don't ask) and the chap who would be waiting outside, guarding the students' bags and coats (they're not supposed to take them in) and available to guide students to the loo if necessary, appeared soon. They were nice! And by ten minutes to two we let the students in. There was some confusion; some students walked in only to realise they were in the wrong room, so they needed their attendance slips back. But then we could start!

All went without incident. The students got writing and I tried to read a draft BRITICE manuscript. The first student was out after 40 minutes. Not a good sign! But what can you do. Most students left early; only one was left in the last fifteen minutes. He's a thorough chap! Then time was up.

The attendance lady checked I had all the exams and then released them to me. I'd just bike them to my office. It fit in the bag!

I first went to the loo; after three hours not excessive. And in the corridor the loos were in, there were two Eisteddfod chairs! Quite cool.

Snazzy Eisteddfod chair

When I walked back I bumped into a colleague. also back from invigilating. He wanted to know how many students I had at the end. Well, just one. He thought that was awful. Surely you would use every minute given! I disagreed. If they give you three hours for it I'm sure it can comfortably done in less. The full three hours would be for people who write slowly, or perfectionists who make amazing diagrams, or something. I tended to walk away from exams well before the end time! You use two hours to write what you know. Then you can use another hour to waffle away, but how is that a good thing? We clearly had quite different views on this kind of thing.

Next week I'll see how it was done! I hope well!

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