Spring 2017

 

KOR 101 First-Year 1st Semester Korean

Instructor: Han Eun Hee

What grade that you get for this class largely depends on how well you do for your tests and exams. But I still feel that it is easy to get A- and above. My classmates had a range of grades from A to B though. I know 2 had A and I’m sure there are more. We don’t know our grades for most of the assessment for this class, so I’ll just say how well I think I did. You need 90 and above to get A, and 85 – 89.9 for A-, 80 – 84.9 for B+, 75- 79.9 for B.

I’ll start with the simpler stuff first. Attendance and participation is worth 15%. Basically, she wants us to have a good attitude in class and also come to class on time. People who are often late for class or don’t come to class often won’t get full marks for this. As a class, we agreed with her on this. 

Homework and assignments are worth 10%. Homework is done in the exercise book inside the textbook. After completing a chapter, you will do the homework for that chapter. Very easy one lah; it’s all what you learnt in class. just do and you’ll get the marks 😀 We had 2 writing assignments. The first one is about our family, second one is about our holiday. The assignment is 200-250 words (inclusive of spacing). I got A- for the first assignment as I had some grammatical errors, most probably it’s the same for the second too.

We had 2 mini tests, 10 marks each, 5% each. There are 10 questions in mini tests, which consists of listening questions and translating the vocabulary questions. I got 10 for the first test, and 8 for the second. Class average is 9 for both.

Next is the oral assignment and exam. It is a total of 10% of your grade. Not sure exactly how many % for each component though. Oral assignment is very easy, she just asked us to send her a voice recording of our self-introduction. Oral exam is slightly tougher though, because most of us are not really good at speaking. Speaking is different from writing because for writing, you can take time to think what/how to write. But for speaking, you really have to think in Korean on the spot lol She usually tests those conversations that can be found in the textbook. After chapter 3. Like for example, chapter 9 is about describing hometown and scenery, so you need to know how to describe it and also make sure you know all the relevant vocabulary and nouns. Chapter 10 and 11 is about ordering food in a restaurant so make sure you know how to order also. She will bring printed pictures of food and the order list :p I was tested on talking about my family, hometown’s scenery,  what do I want to eat and drink, and ordering food. I think it’s because I stumbled when I was trying to order the food so she tested me on other topics to give me more chances. Overall, I think I did fine. I don’t have problems with pronunciation, just that I need time to think of what to say. Before we had our oral exam, Ms Han told us that students from past semester have did well for oral exam.

The midterm exam is 15%. It consists of questions such as translating the vocabulary, correcting grammatical errors in a sentence, making a sentence with the appropriate markers and particles (part of Korean grammar), and completing unfinished sentences based on the pictures given. There is also a listening comprehension too. The questions are of the same style as those in your exercise book. So when studying for your tests, make sure you revise your exercise book too. I got 91/100 for midterm. I lost marks due to some spelling and grammatical errors. Ms Han told us that the average is around 80 for the other class, but our class’s average is lower. So she was a little sad because she thought we would all do fine for the paper, but some did badly. She thought the questions were really straightforward and they were also of the same style as those in her lecture notes and the exercise book. I thought so too. Take note of your spelling during exams, Ms Han said that many students make careless mistakes! So for the final exam, she made it easier, it was mostly just choosing the correct particle/marker from the table, comprehension passages with MCQ questions, creating your own sentence using the word given, and translation. No listening comprehension. Final exam is 20%. The whole book is supposed to be tested, but since we could only finish till chapter 13, we were only test till chapter 13. I don’t think I got more than 4 questions wrong for the final exam. 

Lastly, the final project is worth 20% of your grade. In groups of 2 or 3 or 4, we had to write a script, memorise, and then make a video. On the last day of class, everyone will watch each others’ videos 😀 Video will be 4 – 5 or 6 – 7 or 8 – 9 mins long depending on the number of people in your group. The more people there are, the video will be longer. And that duration is solely for speaking Korean, it does not include the time where you are walking around, etc. The script is marked as a group, pronunciation and fluency (as seen from the video) will be marked individually. So make sure you can be heard when you review the video. Quality of the video doesn’t matter, at least that’s what she said. And it’s still ok to stumble/blank out once or twice; these people still managed to get an A at the end, though many were really smooth in their speaking and memorising. I’m sure there are other criteria, but she didn’t say anything else. However, one thing to note is that, try not to use too much voice-over. Because it means that you aren’t really putting in effort to memorise. Also, you must really memorise your lines properly and look confident, if not you will look like you didn’t put in much effort in memorising. I think me and my partner lost marks because of this; in the first scene, uhm, it was a bit uncomfortable to watch lol I was very stiff throughout the conversation because I was nervous and my partner was struggling to remember her lines. We only filmed one or at max, 2 tries for each scene because she didn’t want to waste time as she was busy. And she was very insistent on it. So even if we made any mistake, she didn’t want to film again. So I think we lost a lot of marks for this 😦 Anyway I think if she can see that you really put in effort, she will probably give quite high marks one lah.

Anyway, although this is a 5 credit class, the amount of work and studying needed doesn’t feel like 5 credits. More like 3.5, maybe at most 4 only.

Hmm… so what else? Ms Han is really nice and she is also expressive and funny when she is trying to give and explain examples to us. Like there was once where she used a tissue paper to demonstrate the difference in pronunciation for the consonants, or when she tried to express the meaning of a word with actions, facial expressions and all. Initially Ms Han looked really strict for the first 2 lessons (during the introduction and also when she was teaching us the Korean alphabet – vowels and consonants (hangul)). Maybe she wanted us to pronounce properly. But halfway through the second lesson, one student suddenly got up, told her “too difficult”, and walked out of the class and never came back lol. She was shocked and she asked us if it was really difficult, everyone was like ‘no’. Eh but tbh I felt that the pace is a little fast and sometimes I got a little lost. I think it’s because some people already had some slight background knowledge of hangul. Even before the lesson started, some people already had written notes of all the alphabets! Anyway after the first week, the pace slowed down and was consistent after that. That’s why we could only complete 13 chapters instead of 15.

Oh and after that day when that student left the class, there was a noticeable change in her attitude, she became a lot more friendlier lol

Anyway, in her class, other than teaching, the rest of the time is spent practicing the conversations in our textbook and doing the questions in our notes. Btw she has really nice powerpoint slides and notes 😀 Oh and sometimes she would make her own picture cards so that we can test ourselves on whether we can remember the nouns. There was once where she let us play the “Telephone Game” (I’m not sure if there is any local name for this game), the game where the last person in the line writes on the board.

I also find her very lenient because we didn’t do well for our mid terms, she made the finals easier. I’m not sure if she made the other assessments easier. But she still helped us in our oral exam though, such as telling which topics we should focus on. She also gives second chances.

** When learning hangul, it is very important to learn the pronunciation of each vowel and consonant properly so that you won’t make mistakes when you learn the pronunciation of new words and when writing down the pronunciation  Because the Korean alphabet is like a mix and match of various consonants and vowels, the pronunciation is also a mixture of the respective consonants and vowels. So try to have a consistent spelling for the pronunciation. For example, 동 is made out of ㄷ, ㅗ, and ㅇ. Individually, I named the pronunciation as d/t, oh, ong. So for me, 동  is pronounced as d/tong. Also, I’m not sure why some students do badly in their exams, but if you understand how those grammar rules work, I think the tests should be easy. So if you are unsure about the grammar rules that are being taught in class, please ask Ms Han 🙂 Anyway, having some or a lack of knowledge of Korean phrases or alphabets beforehand doesn’t determine your performance in this class. It’s pretty strange but true from what I’ve observed. Me and another classmate have 0 knowledge of Korean, but we still did well as compared to students who watched a lot of Korean dramas in Korean and already know some phrases. So work hard! Anyway if you do take this class, I hope you’ll enjoy it! 🙂

My grade for this course: A-

 

COM 451 Communication and Marketing

Instructor: Ray Monteverde

Quite hard to get an A- an above. Most people got only a B+ or B because for the midterm exam, losing 1 mark = losing 1%. Here is the grading scale… 

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For this class, there are quizzes, midterm, a final project and a class participation component for this module.

We had 3 quizzes this semester. Mr Ray will pick the best 2 out of the 3 to account for 20% of your grade (10% + 10%). He will tell you specifically what concepts he will test on. Whatever he said will definitely be tested. He usually tests 3 – 4 concepts and there are 3 – 4 short answer questions. From what I’ve seen, he doesn’t test the same concept in more than 1 question. The quiz is a case study, so you apply what you have learnt to answer the questions. For example, maybe he will ask you to give examples of brand attributes based on the case study, or apply the MECCAS Model to it. Sometimes he will ask you to come up with a brief marketing communication strategy. You don’t need to write super long, detailed answers. Just answer the question and you will be fine. Each question is about 4 – 6 marks. Oh, and it is really important to remember the concepts and use them for the correct question so that you won’t mix up the answers and lose precious marks. It happened to me too often :/ I got 13/20, 13/20, 14/20 for the quizzes. Average is around 14 – 16.

For the midterm, it is exactly the same format and everything, just like the quizzes. However, it is 25 marks, 25% of your overall. I got 15/25 for this. Most people got 13 -16.

After the midterm results were out, Mr Ray gave us the second class activity and told us that it is to help us pull up our marks. He didn’t say how. Class activities are 10% of your overall grade and both of our class activities were 10 marks each. It is pair work. I haven’t heard of anyone not getting the full 10 marks for both activities. Our first activity was to do a brand analysis for the brand of our choice. Second one was just applying the MECCAS Model for the same brand.

As for the final project, it is 35%, 100 marks. Basically, we have to come up with a marketing communication strategy for the brand of our choice (He gave us 5 choices) in the form of a written report, and also do a video presentation about it. Video presentation is just about filming ourselves presenting. The project is done in groups of 5. We have to use the following marketing communication tools for our campaign: Electronic Direct Mailer, PR, Social Media Marketing, Advertising. And of course, we also need to come up with the design of the advertisements, mailers, etc. Quite simple one lah, just analyse, be creative, and meet the requirements. We got 94/100 because of some minor mistakes here and there, like some typos/printing error (strangely, some words got cut off), and certain ways which we could improve our marcom strategy. The others got around this range also.

Lastly, attendance is just 10%. He takes down attendance at the end of every class so even if you are late, it’s still ok. Just come to class. I think most people should get 10 for this lol

Prior to this class, I have totally 0 knowledge about marketing or marcom. But after this class, I feel that I have learnt something. Like at least I now know what goes into a marketing campaign. The textbook is not required as Mr Ray’s notes are comprehensive enough even for people like me to learn from and understand. Whatever you need to study for the quizzes/midterm or examples to use for the project are all inside it. His lectures are also pretty straightforward and easy to understand, maybe because it’s more of examples than theories. First 2 lectures are boring because they are about the basic concepts of marketing, but the rest are more interesting and he will also show videos about some cool and funny advertisements.

And he is also really friendly. When class ends, he likes to go around and talk to students, ask them if they have any questions, etc. or sometimes chit chat with them. Quite a number of my classmates are taking his classes for the second time. I guess that means he is ok :p

My grade for this course: B

 

PSY 101 Introductory Psychology

Instructor: Dr. Reena

If you put in effort to study, you can get an A- for this class. Getting an A is really hard though because you will lose marks here and there, especially for the project because it is quite tough. Most people got an A- or B+. 90 and above to get A, and 85 – 89.9 for A-, and 80 – 84.9 for B+.

There are 3 exams and 1 project for this class. Project is 30%, divided into 2 parts, lit review and experiment findings, 15% each. She gave us 4 topics to choose from: Parent-adolescent conflict, cognitive development in children, gender differences in cognitive development, and diffusion of responsibility. For the lit review part of the project, you need to come up with 2-3 factors and find research papers on it and write. The word limit is 700 words. We got 8/10 for this section. We asked some other groups and found out they usually got 6 or 7. Dr Reena said a lot of groups made mistakes in APA formatting. Well, most of them are in their first semester, so they are not sure about things like APA format. The other problems are writing the hypothesis statements or lit review incorrectly. So ask her if you are confused about what is required in writing the paper. But take note, there are a lot of people wanting to ask her questions, from projects to class content, so you might need to queue for a long time. She doesn’t really answer questions through email though.

The second half of the project is tougher; this section is where you need to conduct your experiments/interviews and write your findings on it. To be more specific, you need to talk about methodology, results, discussion, limitations, and conclusion. Oh and did I mention that you need to do a video recording of the experiments/interviews? Btw we did diffusion of responsibility and we had to film whether there were people helping us to pick up stuff :p Discussion of the results is the hardest part, because you need to analyse your results, compare with existing literature (such as the lit review) and explain the significance of your results. I better not explain too much, because I’m not good at this either. Our group got 42/50 for this. Not sure about other groups though.

Now, the exams. The first 2 exams are 20% each, 50 and 60 questions respectively. Final exam is 30%, 70 questions. All MCQs. Her questions are a little tricky; it’s mostly application questions where you read the question then you pick the best answer. Such as, giving you a scenario, then asking you which theory is that. There are also some questions that will directly test on facts. No true/false questions or definition questions. But as long as you study everything for the test and read the questions carefully, you will do fine. She doesn’t test on the videos she showed in class, she will say it if she wants to. I got 37/50 for the first exam; didn’t study 1/2 chapter lol A lot of people did very well for the first exam, most people got 40 and above. My group mate told us that someone got 49 too. But not long later, it was revealed that there were people in our class who had access to questions from past year papers and circulated them to others. Dr Reena also found out about it. She said that’s why many people got high marks in our class, but not in the other PSY 101 class. Big issue leh; for the first and second exam, she only returned us the photocopies of our OTAS sheet; originals are with SIM’s examination department. Dr Reena told us that this is a serious issue and it is considered cheating. Even the UB provost knows about this incident. Dr Reena told us that “there is a long list of names” of those who were involved in this and they will be issued a warning. If these people cheat again, they will be expelled from school. Damn scary sia :O

So don’t do that ah. If you see any past year questions pleasssse DON’T circulate!

So for the second exam, 60 questions. She told us that this time the exam will be more difficult. I got 51/60. Average was around 48 and many people were disappointed with their results. Final exam is 70 questions. We don’t know how much we got. I think I only got 2 questions wrong. :p

Oh and Dr Reena takes attendance, but I don’t think there’s any impact on your grade. She just wants you to come to class and listen. But if you are late she will ask you to sit right at the front of the class lol

So about Dr Reena, she is nice! And unlike other lecturers, her lectures makes me more interested and want to learn more about psychology. Like the way she teaches it just makes the content really interesting. Seriously, I’ve seen more students ask questions in her class than in other lecturer’s classes, and her lectures are not just all lecturing. Very often, she will have concept checks (questions) in class to reinforce what we have learnt. There was also once where she made a fun online quiz to test our knowledge of the concepts learnt in preparation for the exam. When she is teaching the chapter on cognitive psychology, there were also plenty of activities to test our cognitive abilities, which proves that what the textbook said is correct. The bad-but-not-so-bad-things in her class is that you have to handwrite all your notes, no laptops, and as a senior student, I feel that she treats everyone a bit like kids lol maybe because everyone is a freshie. 

My grade for this course: A-

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Fall 2016

 

UGC 112 World Civilisations 2

Instructor: Mark Lempke

Most people should be able to get an A- or minimum B+ for this class because Prof. Lempke marks the exams leniently and also, maybe the assignments too. A is a 93+, A- 92.9 to 90, B+ 89.9 to 87, B 86.9 to 83.

For this class, there is a attendance/participation component, 3 papers based on the texts assigned, and 2 exams.

For attendance, Prof. Lempke will give a random attendance quiz in class at the end of the lesson. No, it won’t be about the content, but very simple interesting personal questions such as what was dream occupation when you were a child, who is your favourite prof in UB, name of your imaginary country and draw a flag for it, etc. :p He allows 2 absences this semester. For participation, sometimes there will be group discussions or class discussions about the texts assigned, but mostly he takes note of your participation in discussing the texts. He told us that if you missed 2 classes and spoke infrequently, you could get a B in the participation component. Of course there were some people who didn’t speak at all and some who contributed a lot. As for me, I got 140 out of 150 or 14%. I rarely speak up during group discussions but tried to contribute once or twice every time there was a discussion about the texts. Oh and I attended every class.

For the papers, Prof. Lempke will assign a question based on the texts. We had 4 texts this semester and we had to write a paper, 2-3 pages long for any 3 texts. 15% each paper = 45% in total. He will provide 1 question for each text, such as (not exact questions): “What does this text reveal about the position of woman in society? How did the presence of Europeans change the lives of Africans?” This question is a hard one: “How is the author a product of her time? How does her work show the influence of her position during that period?” He doesn’t give any rubrics for the essay. He told us that there is no right or wrong answer, but we need to draw links from the text and content from the lecture to support our argument in our paper. Personally, I feel that these assignments are really hard for me. It’s like writing a literature essay with historical content. I sort of know what he wants, but it is difficult for me to write it out.  During lectures, sometimes Prof. Lempke will talk about the overarching values or something that is characteristic of that period of time. You need to link what you have learnt during lectures with the content from the text. Like talking about how the context of that period influence the setting or the content of the text. My classmates who have done well also told me the same thing. Don’t understand what I’m talking about? It’s ok, when you try to do it then you’ll know. And you can always try to ask him what he is looking out for in your answers. Maybe write out a draft and show it to him. And always make sure your answer/paper is answering the question. This is really important! Well, I didn’t do well for this component, at least when compared to others; I got 116/150, 118/150, and 119/150  –> 11.6% + 11.8% + 11.9% = 35.3%. But don’t worry, those who I have asked about their marks or overheard got 14% and above on average for each paper and some of them even got full marks. So I think most of you will do fine. I did badly partly because I didn’t seek any help, I kept thinking that I knew what I was writing and I thought I was answering the question. But after I read the comments from Prof. Lempke and my answer again, I realised I actually didn’t. Please don’t make the same mistake as me. 

The last component for this class are the exams. There are 2 exams, 20% each = 40% in total. Same format: MCQ and fill in the blanks, 2 marks each, answer 20 out of 22 questions, omit any 2 questions; short answer questions, 6 marks each, answer 10 out of 12 questions, omit any 2 questions. Exams are quite easy and he also marks it leniently. Some of the questions (not exact) are: “How did the Reformation influenced the Scientific Revolution? What do the voyages of Zheng He tell us about his era? What are the differences in the way Akbar and Aurangzeb ruled their empire?” Yep, so it’s quite straightforward and Prof. Lempke also told us that the length of your answer should be about 3 – 4 sentences long. He gives a study guide for exams; they are all key terms which he said might appear in the MCQ/Fill in the blanks section or in the short answer section, or maybe not at all, depending on how you answer the short answer questions. I think it’s somewhat useful, most of those terms really do appear in either those sections or you have to talk about it when answering the short answer questions. But still, study everything. During the exams, if you can’t remember how to answer some questions, don’t panic, just write down whatever you can remember that can somewhat answer the question. Even when my answer is slightly incorrect, he still gave me 6 marks lol He told us that he didn’t give anyone below 4 marks for a question as long as they tried to answer the question. You can expect to get almost full marks as long as you mention some relevant names/dates/events, etc. He doesn’t give 0 or 1 mark to anyone, maybe if you were writing some insensitive comment. Even if you write the lyrics to “Bohemian Rhapsody” you can get a 2. He really said that lol :p For the exams , I got 88/100 and 90/100 marks. That’s like 17.6% and 18%. I think he said the average for the first exam is around 88, and quite a number of people got 90 and above and some even got 100. Not sure about the second exam because it was after the last week of class.

Prof. Lempke doesn’t use a textbook, so don’t worry about memorising chunks of text. He solely relies on powerpoint slides. The most important thing is to take down notes, in fact, take down everything that he says because you might need to use it during the exams. Also take down everything he writes on the whiteboard. Very important! They tend to be key stuff that will be tested. Anyway, if you missed out on what he says, you can ask him or search it online, but don’t need to look into too much details, because he only tests what he mentions during his lectures, any additional info that you read online but is not mentioned in class won’t be tested. Also, he might test from those crash course videos, but not so much. So far he hasn’t test anything on those articles that he uploaded to ublearns.  

I like Prof. Lempke’s class because the way he teaches makes me feel like a learnt a lot without even needing to read a textbook. Like Prof. Bennett, he also uses images of architecture, art pieces and artifacts to explain his points. But he is kind of an introvert, so he is not the kind of prof that will crack jokes a lot, but he is still interesting and knowledgeable; he knows how to answer your questions if you are fishing for more information about a particular event/topic. And some students like to chat with him after class 🙂

But one thing bad is that sometimes he speak a little too fast for us to finish writing/typing down whatever he has to say. This means that we have to go back to do a google search on whatever we missed and this takes time. And sometimes he will explain a lot of names, either of people or places or events and not write it down on the board, and some of us would are confused because we don’t know how to spell them. But after this class, I realised that if he mentions a lot of names, but not write it down on the board, it’s most likely not very important.

My grade for this course: B

 

MUS 113 Music in Society: Music and Gender

Instructor: Jeremy Leong

Super easy class to get an A-; I think almost everyone should be able to get an A-, but a bit hard to get an A though because of the exams. An A is 90 and above, A- is 85 to 89.9. 

There is an attendance component, 3 quizzes, 2 exams, and a project for this class

Attendance is 10% of your grade. Dr. Leong takes attendance randomly and he didn’t say how many absences he will allow and all that, so skip classes at your own risk. But come to class; especially for the lecture on “Popular Music in the US” onwards, you really have to listen and take down notes because you’ll need it for the exam.

Quizzes are worth a total of 30%. There will be 3 quizzes, but Dr. Leong will take the best 2. 🙂 So 15% each. The quizzes are very easy, it’s about matching the definitions to the term. He will give a quiz review sheet, where you need to study all the terms that are on that sheet. No need to study outside of it. Out of all those terms, he will test any 15. Try to get full marks for the quizzes because if you want to get an A for this class, every mark counts! I got 20, 18 and 20 for the quizzes. So I had 30% for this.

The 2 exams are 20% each. There are 3 sections: MCQs, term definitions, and an essay. MCQs are really easy, the questions are very straightforward; I already know the answer to the questions even before I finish reading it :p 20 MCQs, 1 mark each. Try to get full marks for MCQs because the other sections are not that easy to score marks. For term definitions, you’ll need to fully explain 10 terms. 2 marks each. He told us that we need to explain what the term means and also give some examples. This section is hard because, you won’t know whether your answer is good or complete enough to get the full 2 marks. Like for example, I explained what is country music about and gave examples of instruments, but he still wanted me to give examples of musicians and songs. So for this section, I suggest you write everything you know about the term based on what you learn in class and from the slides. If not, you might only get 1 or 1 1/2 mark if he thinks your answer is not complete enough. For the essay, you’ll have a choice of 2-3 questions to write an essay on. 10 marks. There will be one question that is easier than the rest so do that one and make sure that your answer answers the question :). All questions are quite straightforward; it all depends on how you write your points lor. We had questions on describing the development of a music genre and its impact, or comparing the music between 2 cultures. For the first exam, I got 39/50. Dr. Leong told us that the average is 38/50. Not sure about second exam because that was after the class ended.

*For essays I realize Dr. Leong doesn’t test on the background of the musicians, i.e. essays won’t be about writing the background of the musicians, but more about a type of music or culture, so you won’t need to memorise those super long biographies in the slides. The super long ones might be tested in the term definition section of the exam though. But that is also stated in the revision guide, so you don’t need to memorise all of them. (He will ask you to study 15, out of the 15 he wil test 10 of them.) However, you need to know more about those musicians that have only one or two lines of description because you will most probably need to talk about them in your essay.*

 The project is 20% of your grade: 10% presentation skills, 10% content. It’s about picking 2 musicians/bands/singing groups and researching about their contribution to society such as social, political, cultural impact, etc. Dr. Leong will give you a list to choose from or you can pck outside of it, but you need to inform him. Project is done in groups of 10 lol so for our group, we split into half to work on each musician. He wants us to try to be creative in the way we present. Maybe dance? Act? Draw? For our group we did a skit 😀 The presentation is 25 mins long and there’ll also be a 5 mins Q and A. Anyone in the group can answer the questions. The questions that Dr. Leong ask will be those that require you to think more about the musicians that you have researched on. It’s carried out in a discussion style between you and him. No right or wrong answer; he just wants to hear your opinions. We got 17% for the presentation because we screwed up slightly for one of the musicians. Average is aroud 17-18%.

For Dr. Leong’s MUS 113, it’s about the history of music in US, but it’s not the same as the History you studied in school lah. He doesn’t exactly teach it in a chronological order, but more of by categorising the music of each ethnic group in the US, such as Native Indians, European Americans, African Americans, Latinos/Hispanic peoples, and Asian Americans. At the same time, you’ll also learn about the many different genres of music in the US’s musical history. Well, many people find such stuff boring to learn about, but I think it’s interesting 😀 Dr. Leong also uses a set of powerpoint slides to teach; it has about 100 slides so all the stuff that you will learn for the semester are all in there. Just use it to take down notes. Anyway his class is kinda relaxed because the lessons are easy to understand and the quizzes and project are quite easy. Exams just study for it and try your best lor. And no individual assignments to do! Yay! Teaching-wise he is a bit boring haha because his speaking is a little monotone lol. But still, he’s a nice guy and totally not strict at all. And note to everyone, especially the freshies: please don’t talk too much during lectures because it’s really distracting for those that are around you. Yeah he is so not strict, that often there are students talking among themselves. I think it’s because they don’t like what he is teaching :p Oh and did I mention that he will do a revision before the exam? He will write down whatever he has taught and at the same time he will give some hints subtly for the exam so listen for that. He really does give hints, but still, study everything!

P.S. I know all your friends will tell you to take Dr Samuel Wong’s class. But give Dr Jeremy Leong a chance leh. Attend one lesson or something. Who knows, you might come to like his class!

My grade for this course: A-

 

PSY 331 Social Psychology

Instructor: Joshua Redford

If getting a good GPA means everything to you, you should avoid this class, unless you are prepared to work hard. Read on to on find out why…

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So, for this class, there are 3 exams, 30% each, and 10% attendance. Attendance is a freebie; you get the full 10% because Josh doesn’t take attendance 😀 But attending lectures is especially important for this class. I’ll explain more later.

The 3 exams consists of 60 MCQs each. The level of difficulty is also almost the same. Josh will provide a study guide for each exam. But I don’t think it’s very useful as it’s more of a list of what he taught for each chapter. And he will also tell you to study stuff that are not listed there. Sometimes he will also design an online testing system where you can try out some practice questions. For the first exam, the exact questions came out in the exam lol. For the second, the questions were totally different from the exam. For the third, he did provide any practice questions :p

Anyway, his exams are really tricky because the options are really close. But it’s not just that. He can test anything from his lecture notes and textbooks. And he will test about experiments that are mentioned in the textbook or notes. The problem is that there are so many experiments being mentioned, how to remember? My suggstion is that you focus on those that are mentioned in greater detail, and pay more attention to what is the experiment about and what are the results. Also, when he asks about the experiments in the test, he won’t describe it in detail. So sometimes you aren’t sure from which chapter is that experiment from. If there are similar experiments from different chapters/topics, you might get confused and mix them up. He also tests from what he says in class, but they tend to be about examples that are related to the content, not personal jokes or stories. Anyway the exams are still hard and many didn’t do well. I got 41/60, 34/60, 42/60.

Fortunately-but-not-fortunate-enough, there’s extra credit to help. At the beginning of the semester, we were asked to form into groups, max 10 members. Sometimes he will email us some questions for the group to answer, usually about giving real life examples of social psy concepts. If we do them we would get money. Not real of course, but it’s for purchasing different neighbourhoods of Singapore lol $5 for each neighbourhood. Purchasing a neighbourhood gives you 0.25 extra credit for your overall marks and you might also get more questions to do to get more money. And if anyone (or any amount of people) in our group was participated in class often, the whole group would get more money. At the end of the semester, all the money earned was converted into extra credit at an exchange rate of $5 –> 0.25%. The average amount of extra credit is around 0.9. Our group got 1. Max in our class is 1.375. Very minimal. Oh and other than extra credit, he will also curve the exam grades a little. We had an additional 1 mark for each exam. So I got 42, 35, and 43 in the end. Other than the extra credit, we also had an additional 4 marks added to our overall. So my overall mark is 74.5.

But still… look at the final grades. 

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Note: 2 of the students whose F grades were shown here, resigned before the third exam.

I’m not trying to discourage or put anyone down, but if you’re the kind that die die must get B and above, then maybe you should reconsider taking this mod. But I have to say that a lot of us probably didn’t put in 100% effort in studying for all our exams either. If you try this mod and work hard for it, maybe you might get a good grade, who knows? There are some people getting good grades too. On a side note, my friend from Josh’s other class, PSY 427 Adult Development and Aging, also told me that the average overall grade is a C+. Maybe this means that Josh sets difficult exams for all his classes?

Anyway, Josh likes to tell a lot of personal and funny stories and sometimes he also shows funny videos in class. A pretty nice and outgoing guy. However, he is not very good at explaining stuff. He is ok at teaching everything except the experiments. I mean he can’t explain the experiments well enough for us to understand it well. So for me I feel tired listening to his lecture as my brain is trying hard to understand and absorb all the info. I have to go back and slowly look at the slides and think about what he said in class. I don’t want to ask him to explain almost every experiment again to me. Sometimes I also hear people asking their friends: “So what is he talking about?” That being said, attending lectures is important because you won’t be able to understand the concepts and experiments in the slides if you didn’t attend lectures. Also, some of the experiments CANNOT be found in the textbook. I had to miss one class because I had an interview, and when I looked at the notes, it’s really difficult to understand the concepts, especially the experiments. If you go to class, at least you’ll understand 50%. If you don’t, it’s 0%. And remember, sometimes he will also test from examples that he mentions in class.

My grade for this course: C