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August 05, 2020, 08:18:24 pm

Author Topic: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings  (Read 1201826 times)  Share 

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #570 on: June 30, 2016, 07:48:51 pm »
Subject Code/Name: BIOM20001 Molecular and Cellular Biomedicine 

Workload: 7 lectures every week (some are used as workshops), 5 CALs(one of them has a prac over 2 weeks)

Assessment: 5 CAL tests(10%), 2 MSTs(10% each), 2 exams (70%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  3. 2010,2011 and 2013

Textbook Recommendation:  not needed

Lecturer(s): Dr Terry Mulhern (topic 1)
                            Dr Michael Murrary, Dr Trent Perry, Dr Marnie Blewitt (topic 2)
                            Associate Professor Robb de Iongh, Associate Profesor Gary Hime (topic 3)
                            Professor Roy Robins-Browne, Professor Lorena Brown, Dr Odilia Wijburg (topic 4)
                            Dr Vicki Lawson (topic 5)

Year & Semester of completion: 2016, Semester 1

Rating:  2 Out of 5 (Unpopular opinion I know)

Your Mark/Grade: H3(67)

Comments: Even after my seniors told me 1st year bio was nothing compared to MCB, I still did not expect MCB to be such a difficult subject.

Unlike 1st year bio where you can catch up during the weekends if you are one week behind, there are 6-7 lectures every week for MCB. Not only the number of lectures is doubled, the amount of content in one lecture is also increased. There are so many details to remember across 5 different topics. This subject focuses on rote-memorising, nothing can be done by understanding. Most of the time I walked out from the lecture hall not understanding anything.

You have to prepare for 30 lectures for each MST. Some of the lecturers only finish going through the final lectures needed few days before the MST. If you think you can be ready by preparing 2 weeks before the MST, you are wrong. (I know this because that was what I did). You actually have to go through every lecture right after it is finished to remember all the details.

CAL tests
Everyone should be aiming for 10% for this. Many people "collaborate" to get full marks on these. The first two CALs did not help with understanding the content but the rest are pretty useful. The test for CAL 3 is only open for 10 minutes and we have to answer 10 questions, which is really ridiculous.

Paper A is made up of MCQs. It was reasonable for most of it but some question tested really little details which were overlooked by many.
Paper B is made up of short answer questions. They say short answer questions but actually it's just many short essays. Some questions were allocated too many marks, e.g two autoimmunity questions for 8 marks each. Really? There are only like two main points on this subtopic. I also did not know what many of the questions want us to write, even if I spent more time preparing I don't think I can answer them. I totally do not understand how some people manage to do well on this paper.

This is a terrible subject which does not require understanding. It's like forcing yourself to eat a lot until you feel like puking then vomiting everything during the exams. MCB is the worst subject I've taken so far, even worse than EDDA(boring stats subject). I'm very disappointed with the mark I got but I'm also just glad that it's now over.
2015-2017: Bachelor of Biomedicine (Neuroscience)
2018: Doctor of Medicine (Withdrawn)
2019: Bachelor of Commerce (Actuarial Studies?)


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #571 on: July 01, 2016, 12:42:28 am »
Subject Code/Name: GERM10006/GERM20007/GERM30005 German 5 

Workload:  1 x 1-hour lecture, 1 x 1-hour tutorial (based on the lecture), 1 x 2-hour language seminar

Assessment:  If you take this as a level 2 or 3 subject, it might vary a bit.
One hour written language exam during the exam period [25%]
One hour written lecture exam during the exam period [12.5%]
One essay of 500 words for the language seminar component during semester [12.5%]
Two essays of 500 words each for the cultural studies component due in weeks 8 and 12 [25%]
10 minute oral presentation for the language seminar component during semester [10%]
Listening comprehension test for the language seminar component during semester [5%]
Mid-semester test for the language seminar component in week 7 [10%]

Lectopia Enabled: Yep.

Past exams available:  Nope.

Textbook Recommendation:  "B Grammatik" is the prescribed text. I honestly think you could do well in the subject without the book, depending on how good your grammar skills are going into the subject.

Lecturer(s): A bunch of different lecturers from the German faculty. This changes every week.

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2016

Rating:  3.5/5

Your Mark/Grade: H1

Comments: The best part about this subject is the 2-hour language seminar. The usefulness and enjoyability of the lecture and respective tutorial absolutely pale in comparison to the seminar, which is the perfect blend of language skills and cultural knowledge.

My biggest gripe with this subject was the tutorials/lectures. The readings typically fluctuated in difficulty, and basically nobody completed the readings anyway, so there was little class discussion. At the end of the semester, I was calculating the number of tutorials I could miss and still pass on attendance because there was typically little to gain from them. The idea of the tutorials is that you come in with a translated, read text and written responses to the corresponding questions, but these were normally quite boring and there felt little reason to do them.

The previous review of this subject mentions how the subject is great if you want to learn about tiny bits of German literature, and I think this really hit the nail on the head. Imo this subject could function very well with just 2, 2-hour seminars separate from any kind of lectures. The lectures and tutorials felt more like the department was trying to cram archaic German novels and cultural fun facts down your throat and little learning actually came out of them. The best way to learn a language is in a classroom.

Moreover, one other thing I wasn't fond of in the subject was that it didn't really test the effort you put in, but rather gauged how good you were at the language coming into it. While there is definitely room to improve, it is easy to fly through this subject if you already have decent German skills. If you show up to the lectures and seminars and do some broad readings of the texts, you'll be able to get a pretty good mark. While this isn't necessarily a bad thing, I don't think the subject actually challenged me to do well or improve from where I was in German. I feel as competent in the language as I was in preparation for my exams in year 12. To give an example, you go through and are assessed multiple times on adjectival endings, an area of grammar that is typically handled much earlier. This leads to some pretty easy marks.

You are given some vocab lists throughout the semester, but these aren't assessed at all, to my knowledge. That being said, putting in the effort to at least learn some of the words will obviously help your language skills holistically. I personally gave up on them, so it's just extra work that's up to you. If you have other weaknesses, focus on them first.

I'll briefly go over each piece of assessment and add my thoughts. The 500 word essay for the language seminar should be a good way to understand where you're at in the subject as it's the first essay you'll get marked. The same applies to all essays, but the earlier the start, the better off you'll be. Make sure you get all of the referencing stuff correct or you'll lose easy marks. Similarly, it's crucial to avoid silly mistakes in your essays, because these will undermine your piece the most. Throw in many "new" grammar rules you've learned in the seminar into this piece.

The MST rewards you if you're good with the language side of things. If you want to succeed in this, just spam questions from B Grammatik and work on your general writing/grammar skills. The activities you do in class are sufficient to prepare you for the reading task and everything else, so that's no stress.

The 10 minute oral isn't as intimidating as it sounds when you realise you only really have to speak for 5 minutes (you get a partner), and you can bring in cue cards to read off. This assessment honestly separated those who had done VCE German before and those who hadn't, so make sure you're prepared as it's literally the only speaking you do for the entire semester. If you want to do well, prepare early and get someone you trust to help go over your oral and iron out mistakes.

For first year students, you do a listening task that is assessed. In our semester, this was super easy and the average was somewhere above 90%. What separated people was simply silly mistakes. I thought this was a fair piece of assessment with correct weighting.

The lecture/tute essays require a fair chunk of work. However, you do get to pick a single topic of many, so playing to your strengths should let you pull through. If you want to do well in these, don't do as I did and start them a few days before the deadline. The best scores will come from a carefully planned out essay that isn't trying to be too complex for itself. Realise that 500 words does not give you a large space for complexity of ideas, so be succinct and smart in how you write.

One weakness of this subject was that it had no past exams that I could find. No sample questions are given, either However, Daniela was really nice and tells you exactly what every section will cover. The best way to prepare for the exam is to:
1) understand the grammar rules (and the language behind the grammar -- different types of conjunctions, prepositions, etc.)
2) go through lectures/readings (it's hard to bs your way through the 2nd part of the exam, because it tests specific, random trivia, such as 'what is the text type of this text you read?')

At the end of the day, it felt more like I was taking a German cultural studies or literature class instead of a language one when I was in the lectures. The true problem of this subject is that it doesn't know what it wants to be. It's like it's fighting itself as to whether it wants to teach the language, or teach tidbits of information about German history and culture, depending on whether or not you were in one type of class or the other. And it that sense, it lacks clear direction.

The above paragraph is a bit harsh, considering I actually enjoyed this subject a fair bit. I actually really liked the language seminars and thought they were engaging, not to mention the teaching staff are super nice and helpful. If you did German in VCE, you should not struggle with the content at all (apart from the readings, but these just take time). Sorry for the length.
2016Ė2018: Bachelor of Biomedicine (Neuroscience), The University of Melbourne
2019Ė2022: Doctor of Medicine, The University of Melbourne


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #572 on: July 01, 2016, 02:35:04 am »
Subject Code/Name: MAST10006 Calculus 2

Workload:  3 lectures and one practice class a week.

Assessment:  Four assignments which make up 20% of your grade. The remaining 80% comes from your exam.

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available:  Yes, there were six available with solutions.

Textbook Recommendation:  None. The lecture notes (a green booklet) are more than enough.

Lecturer(s): John Sader, Christine Mangelsdorf, John Banks, Iwan Jensen

Year & Semester of completion: 2016, semester 1.

Rating:  5/5

Your Mark/Grade: H2B


I enjoyed studying Specialist Maths in Year 12 and even though I didn't achieve anything flashy in terms of marks there, I was eager to make sure I studied some kind of maths at university. Calc 2 is a difficult subject and like many of the difficult subjects before it, it tends to get hyped up to the point of exaggeration. Despite this, the exam is incredibly tough as it is three hours long and covers the entire course. It's also worth 80% of your final mark which is a point that only fully sunk in as I looked at my mark for the subject.

The course is really fun to study in my opinion. It begins with a week or two on limits and continuity which most people seemed to feel uneasy about but that goes away once you get the hang of it. At the time, it felt a little more abstract than what I'd have imagined they would teach in a course called 'Calculus 2'. You then get into hyperbolic functions which ultimately felt like discovering more trignometric functions (like sin, cos and tan) - it's not super enjoyable but I wouldn't call it challenging either.

And then finally you hit the biggest part of the course, which is all about calculus (it starts off by building upon the diff/int you learned in Spesh) and differential equations. Personally, I found the Calculus sections of the Spesh course to be really enjoyable so I loved this part of the course. Beware that some of the problems can get long and hard here.

After you cover partial derivatives and and briefly study the mathematical side of how a spring oscillates (so simple harmonic motion and then varying levels of air resistance), you get into functions of two variables which is where I felt most people ended up getting lost. I don't think it's because there's anything particularly difficult in that section of the course but rather that it's the final section of what is undoubtedly a pretty long course that feels overbearing at times.

So the course is long and the exam is quite tough (there's a stat about the subject's fail rate that gets paraded around every now and then). How could I have possibly enjoyed it?

The lectures and practice classes were absolutely phenomenal. Christine Mangelsdorf is an incredible lecturer who is very clear and thorough. She always provides her run down of the theory that's being covered or provides systematic strategies to approaching the more difficult questions. It might get a little annoying when she's being extra precise with something you understand easily but her willingness to cover everything diligently is something you'll feel extremely grateful for several times during the course when you're struggling to understand a concept or a question. I don't know about any of the other lecturers but I'd suggest doing your best to make sure you attend her stream in future semesters.

The practice classes were really worthwhile. I scheduled mine to be with a friend so I always had company but you break up into small groups of about 2-4 and tackle a question sheet on a whiteboard. You're encouraged to collaborate with your group for different approaches and your tutor hovers between groups, correcting questions and providing explanations when they are required (or maybe an easier way to solve a problem). They worked really well to soak up everything that had been taught to you during the lectures during the week beforehand.

I thought the assignments provided a fantastic balance between a natural extension of what's covered in lectures/tutes and a challenge. They explain that they encourage you to talk about approaches to problems with your friends and that definitely helps if you're struggling on some of the hairier questions. You get them on Mondays (and 7 days to do it), so if you start working on it during the week you'll be fine. Leaving them for Sunday night is just asking for a horrible time because the questions are meant to be a little challenging - so doing them under the pressure of short time limit is quite frustrating. In terms of marks on the assignments, I did really well on them throughout. My advice is to be especially thorough during your assignments, no matter how tedious that may be. Persevere with that tiny sub-question for three pages if it means you cover all your bases. I recommend doing a draft copy or working out each question individually and then neatly rewriting your assignment as a final copy before submitting it. With how long and annoying some things can get, the last thing you want is for your tutor to take marks off because they can't read your handwriting.

There's a problem booklet you get at the start of the semester. It's worth doing to solidify any parts of the course you struggle with but I stopped doing the assigned problems after a few weeks. Pay attention and annotate during the lectures, take your practice classes seriously and start your assignments early and honestly you won't need that booklet for much.

The exam is a nightmare to put it lightly. It's brutal and they're not afraid of throwing something ugly that'll eat up your precious time on there. You need a mark of 50 to pass the subject. If you get do great on all your assignments, that'll lock up about 20% of your total mark and a bit of maths says that if you get about 40% on your exam, you'll pass. Problem is, that's much easier said than done. Calc was on the 3rd day of exams and I had two the day before. Even though I put those two almost completely to the side for the week and a half before to prepare for Calc, I still didn't even scrape 70% on the exam. Don't lose out on those assignment marks because they become vital very quickly if you're not sure this a subject you'll pass. Hinging entirely on the exam to pass the subject is not a good idea (as I walked out, having done some back of the envelope questions, I thought I'd get around about 80%).

Overall, I found this subject to be challenging in all the right ways. I'm still a little bit disappointed with my final exam score but otherwise I had a great time and genuinely would recommend it to anyone who enjoys maths. It's no stroll in the park but the effort you put in feels rewarded throughout the semester (just don't be on the optimistic side of your exam score).


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #573 on: July 01, 2016, 05:28:55 pm »
Subject Code/Name: ANAT20006: Principles of Human Structure

Workload:  3 x 1 hour lectures per week and 4 x 2 hour practicals over the semester

Assessment: 8 x ADSL online quizzes (10%); 2 x mid-semester exams (15% each); 2 hour end of semester examination (60%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available: No. There were some practice questions provided but with no answers. However many students found the anatomy equivalent paper from the biomed subject BIOM20002 to contain very similar practice questions. These could be found online under the library past exams.

Textbook Recommendation:  The recommended text is, Eizenberg N, Briggs C et al: General Anatomy: Principles & Applications, McGraw-Hill 2007. This is a useful textbook but doesn't cover some of the lecture content and is not essential to do well.

Dr Dagmar Wilhelm (3 lectures), Dr Peter Kitchener (2 lectures), Dr Varsha Pilbrow (6 lectures), Dr Simon Murray (7 lectures), Dr Jason Ivanusic (4 lectures), Dr Junhua Xiao (7 lectures), Assoc. Prof Jenny Hayes (1 lecture)

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2016

Rating:  5/5

Your Mark/Grade: H1

This is a fantastic subject!! The topics covered in my opinion are very interesting, and the large number of lecturers means that each specific topic is covered by a lecturer who specialises in that area of the body. Overall, the lecturers are fantastic and they clearly outline in lectures what is needed to know, there is no extended knowledge other than lecture materials and ADSLs. Probably my only complaint is the overall lack of practice material which can make preparing for exams and MST's a bit tricky. Even though i loved this subject it is NOT easy. It is very much a memory based subject and the majority requires a very large amount of rote learning. For me, the fact that i found it fascinating very much helped in tackling the very large amount of content.

Mid-Semester Exams: There are 2 mid semester exams in approximately weeks 7 and 11 and they are each worth 15% of the final grade. These are a step up from first year assessments as they are actually sat under exam conditions in Wilson and University Halls. Whilst this may seem daunting, it is common for most second and third year science subjects and personally i actually found it forced me to continually revise the content as we learnt it. There are some very specific, finer detail questions in these tests, but all fair.

ADSL quizzes: ADSL's are online tutorials posted almost every week accompanies by a test which counts towards the final mark. They are an easy 10% overall as you can attempt the quiz as many times as you like until you get 100%. The tutorial/worksheet that accompanied the test was very detailed and often extended knowledge taught in the lectures. I completed every worksheet, however they were very time consuming, and probably not essential for doing well. I found they really helped my understanding of the topics, and even though they tell you the ADSL content is examinable, there wasn't really any questions directly relating to extended content in the ADSLs.

Prices: There were 4 practicals in total over the semester. I found these very interesting and not as daunting as i expected them to be. Second year anatomy doesn't involve any dissection (thats third year...). They were very interesting as it helped to see the actual structures rather than just learn the theory. However, they do go for two hours and you stand for the entire time so your legs can get sore. They do mark attendance, I'm not sure if attendance is actually required for marks but i definitely recommend attending.

Exam: The end of semester exam consists of 20 multiple choice questions (section A), 4 fill in the blanks (section B) and 4 short answer (section C). The multiple choice (section A) followed the format of the mid-semester exams and only examined the content of the last 1/3 of the course, that hadn't been examined in the two MST's. This was pretty much only the last 3 weeks of semester. These were pretty straightforward, and you could even answer the majority in reading time. Section B consisted of 4 images accompanied by paragraphs where you had to fill in the blanks from a very large work bank. This section can be tricky because it examines the fine detail. Section C was short answer only requiring about 3/4 lines max response for each question. This section can also by tricky as they examine understanding of concepts and also some clinical significance. Overall i thought this semester has some strangely worded questions but overall was a fair examination.

I very highly recommend this subject. I found it fascinating and probably the most enjoyable subject i have completed so far at the university. It is not easy so i definitely recommend study groups, but the content is definitely enjoyable! It is a prerequisite subject for most of the health science/med pathway majors and for third year anatomy subjects.


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #574 on: July 01, 2016, 05:49:14 pm »
Subject Code/Name: FNCE20001 Business Finance 

Workload:  2x 1 hour lecture and 1x 1 hour tutorial every week

Assessment:  2 assignments with 15 MCQs each (7.5% each), 1 MST(25%), 2 hour examination(60%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  2014 semester 2 exam and one sample exam

Textbook Recommendation:  not needed.

Lecturer(s): Vincent Gregoire

Year & Semester of completion: 2016, Semester 1

Rating:  5 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: H1(89)

Comments: After doing finance 1 during semester two last year with my friends, I'm the only one that decided to continue with business finance. I'm glad I made the right choice!

The lecture slides are really good. They contain enough information for you to understand the concepts. All of the lecture slides are uploaded on LMS at the start of the semester so you can have a good idea of what you are going to learn. Sometimes the lecturer has a French? accent when speaking but what he says can still be really well understood. The content was not too hard until the final three weeks where I found taxes, capital structures and derivative securities more difficult than the rest.

Tutorials are not compulsory. The tutors do not mark your attendance. However, I really encourage you to attend all the tutorials even if you are able to do all the tute questions as the tutors will give their explanation for most of the questions. Maybe there is a better way of doing a question or wording your explanation. You do not need to complete the tutorial questions before the tutes but I did except for the final two weeks. I encourage you to complete the questions first and not just waiting for the tutors to spoonfeed you answers. It really helped with my understanding and you will know what questions to ask the tutor if you have any problems. There is no marks for participation but you should try to answer when the tutor asks something. My tutorial was very quiet. Only the same few people answer my tutor's questions.

These are free marks! Everyone should aim for full marks here. You get 1-2 weeks to do the questions then you have one hour to submit online where you just click your preworked answers. Of course you can just do it together with your friends but I think it is better to do it on your own first before discussing and checking answers.

2 past MSTs (2014 sem 2 and 2015 sem 2) and 3 practice MSTs were provided. I did not have time to do all of them so I did some and had a look at the rest. Answers and explanations were also provided. If you have any more questions, you can ask the online tutor. The MST tested on the first 9 lectures and I got full marks on it. I'm surprised the average was only 11.18/15 as I expected the cohort average to be higher than 12/15.

After getting full marks on the assignments and MST, I was aiming for mid 90s. Unfortunately the exam was a lot harder than the assignments and the MST. I think the exam was still reasonable except for a few questions which I had no idea how to do and they were probably harder than the stuff we learned. You also get 2014 sem 2 exam and 1 more sample exam to have an idea of the difficulty of the paper. Try to get full marks for multiple choice. This semester we had 15 MCQs which made up 30% of the exam mark.

This subject made me want to do more finance breadths but sadly the lv3 finance subjects need BusFi and QM2/Intro Econometrics as prerequisites and I probably won't be doing it as I did not enjoy my 1st year stats subject. I definitely recommend this subject as a elective/ breadth! Feel free to ask me questions if I did not include something you want to know.
2015-2017: Bachelor of Biomedicine (Neuroscience)
2018: Doctor of Medicine (Withdrawn)
2019: Bachelor of Commerce (Actuarial Studies?)


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #575 on: July 01, 2016, 09:21:23 pm »
Subject Code/Name: MAST10005/Calculus 1 

Workload:  3 x 1 hr lectures, 1 x 1 hr tute (per week)

Assessment:  10 assignments worth 2% each (20% total)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  Yes, loads. They give answers for 6 exams and there are many more in the library. More than enough exam preparation available.

Textbook Recommendation:  There is a prescribed textbook for this subject, but I donít know of anyone in the entire cohort who bought it. Iíll talk about this in the comments.

Lecturer(s): I had Alex Ghitza, but there are two other streams you couldíve gone too

Year & Semester of completion: 2016, semester 1

Rating:  5 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: H1 (88)


I know thereís a few calc 1 reviews up here already, but the most recent one was from 3 years ago so Iíd thought Iíd give a little bit of an update.


You learn content in this subject in a ďfollow-as-I-doĒ manner. You buy a bound book of lecture slides with missing spaces, and you fill it in as the lecturer covers different topics. There are a few practise questions in there along with theory, and you can either do these questions at home or with the lecturer as he/she does it. Up to you really.

As others have said, this subject is for those who didnít have the chance (or were too scared LOL) to do spesh in year 12 and wanted to try their hand at university mathematics. I did modestly well in year 12 math (43 in methods) and I didnít find this subject to be too difficult when I applied consistent work.

Donít be intimidated by the word ďcalculusĒ. Ironically enough, thereís hardly any of it in the subject. You start off doing trig functions, inverses etc. You move onto vectors, then an introduction to complex numbers. After this, youíll spend the rest on calculus itself Ė basic differentiation, integration then differential equations.

The subject is very well taught. I had Alex Ghitza, and he was an excellent lecturer. Very funny guy and managed to explain things in easy to understand ways. He was the 11:00 stream, so try and get his if you can.

My one gripe with this subject is the time allocation to each topic. Not intending to come off as pretentious, but I sat through the first 3 weeks of this subject extremely bored. We did stuff that really should have been glossed over (trig functions, SOHCAHTOA, basic vectors etc). Then, we had to rush through integration and differential equations extremely quickly. I guess they want us to get the fundamentals right first, but still we spent the same amount of time revising SOHCAHTOA/those triangles as we did learning differential equations.

However, if you apply consistent work then youíll be alright. If you did alright in Methods youíd recognise most of the stuff in the course anyways.

You can also buy a problem book with loads of questions. These are really helpful in consolidating knowledge, as with math subjects Iíve found the best way to learn is keep doing questions.


My favourite part of this subject. Basically, you form groups with classmates and work through a question sheet together on the white board. Itís a great way of making friends and consolidating knowledge. Attendance is not compulsory, but itís the only way to get assignments back so youíd want to go regardless. 


Calling these ďassignmentsĒ is a bit of a stretch. Basically, theyíre just one or two short answer questions. If you keep up with the work, youíll have no problems whatsoever.

Iíd recommend you make a group with your friends so you can check answers. You should be aiming for 10/10ís in these assignments.

One note - they can be very pedantic with their marking. Make sure you clearly state all working and assumptions so they donít have an excuse to take marks off.


The examís usually have the same format Ė read through a couple and youíll see the pattern. There are no tricks here, and no exceedingly difficult left-field questions like you saw in Methods. If you understood the concepts in class, did the homework and kept up to date, you will have no issues with the exam.

The hardest part is dealing with all the arithmetic. There are no calculators whatsoever in the exam, so you need to be able to perform manual calculations without the aid of any technology. It may seem easy, but in the pressure of the exam room itís very easy not to include a minus sign or forget to divide etc.

You are given 3 hours, which I feel is plenty of time so thereís heaps of opportunity to check your answers.

-   Good introduction to uni maths
-   If youíre looking for a science subject or a breadth (and liked math in high school) then choose this
-   You WILL be rewarded, but make sure you do the work
-   Very well taught and run


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #576 on: July 01, 2016, 11:09:22 pm »
Subject Code/Name: MCEN30017 Mechanics & Materials

                3 x One Hour Lectures Weekly
                1 x One Hour Tute Weekly
                2 x Three Hour Materials Pracs sometime during semester
                4 x Two Hour FEA Workshops (from Week 7-10)

                2 x 7.5% Materials Practical Reports
                5% FEA Mid Semester Test
                20% FEA Assignment Due at the end of sem
                60% Final Exam (Only On Materials & Mechanics modules)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture, but Kenong always uses a laser pointer and often writes stuff on the board that isnít on the slides but comes up in the exam, and the Mechanics lectures are really hard to understand with just lecture recordings as Jason uses both document cameras to explain. Which means in both cases you're missing out on something or the other, so Iíd strongly recommend going to the lectures.

Past exams available:  Yes, no answers provided, but crowd sourced for the Materials module at least is available on Facebook.

Textbook Recommendation: Materials Science & Engineering - An Introduction is strongly recommended by Kenong for the Materials part and he tells you to read certain parts after every lecture, but personally reckon itís a waste as it only really helps for a few marks in the first Materials Practical. Maybe just download the PDF for this part.

                  Dr. Kenong Xia (Materials)
                  Dr. Mohsen Talei (FEA)
                  Associate Professor Jason Monty (Mechanics)

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2016

Rating:  2 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: 87 [H1]

Comments: Itís tough to know where to begin with this subject as there is so much to talk about, and I wish Iíd known much of this before I started it. So Iíll try starting with a short summary of my experience with the subject as a whole, and break it up in detail for each module at the bottom.

Ok here goes. While this is probably not the worst subject ever, it is without a doubt the worst taught subject have ever done at uni so far, and the experience was pretty much the same for a lot of others that did it. Some of the teaching staff are perhaps the most useless that I have come across to date, with some of them at times not caring whether you have even been taught what is required properly, let alone whether you pass or fail. With them often taking their teaching duties as simply something they have to do, rather than actually want to do. This makes it incredibly difficult at times to not only understand the content, but also to understand what is even being taught, and what it is that we even need to know. (There were shortcuts and methods to solve things in Materials in particular that werenít covered in the lectures or tutorials at all, but came up in the exam, and which we only learnt about whilst doing the past exams when my friend and I searched online for help). This is further compounded by the subject being totally fragmented; with it being horribly organized and teaching staff not having any conversation whatsoever with those from within their own module itself, let alone the others. So often youíre left with a predicament where the lecturer teaches you one thing, and says this is how it should be done, only for a tutor or demonstrator in the tute/workshop to totally contradict them, leaving you scratching your head.
It however is not a very tough subject to do well in as certain content, and the exam in particular is fairly repetitive with at least half the questions in my exam occurring in past years word for word. Which means that if you put in the effort and actually understand the content during semester as well as do all the past exams, you can know the answers to many of the questions before you even start solving them. Itís a subject that you will need to teach yourself a fair bit at times, so the key is to constantly be up to date, and across all the concepts that are being covered, else itís easy to turn up in SWOTVAC struggling to pass it. The key is to not fall behind, ensuring you understand everything, and you can have a calm build up to the exam.

The subject is split into three parts, Materials, FEA & Mechanics. With Materials Lectures running from Week 1-5, FEA Week 6-7, and Mechanics Week 8-12. The Materials part is fairly dry, with Kenong taking a read straight off the slides and explain every tiny thing in painstaking detail approach for the majority of the module, and his slides have a lot of information on them. He however I think purposely gives exam clues which he explains on the whiteboard rather than have it on the slides and thus doesnít get recorded on Lectopia as perhaps a reward to those who turn up. This is kinda infuriating and unfair for those like me who had a clash for one of the lectures each week, let alone people who go over lecture recordings again to revise, so Iíd recommend you go to his lectures and do what ever you can to ensure you pay attention in them even if they do get really boring at times. Also, Kenong can at times be tough to reach and kind of rude over email, often refusing to answer questions or indirectly telling you to work it out yourself so Iíd recommend getting a hold of him after lectures if you have any questions as heís much nicer then.
The 2 practicals for materials are weighted 7.5% each, and are on Tensile and Impact Testing respectively. They are run by Farzan who explains the prac and what he expects of you in the report very well, and whilst the Reports require some time and effort, it can be easy marks for those who paid attention to him when he was talking. The tutorials are fairly boring with the Eng standard of a tutor at the front working out problems on the board without thorough explanation whilst everyone just sits there and copies it whether they understand or not, so it is at times a waste as attendance isnít marked, but Iíd say its best to go and get an idea of what sort of questions might turn up in the exam if nothing else. There are tonnes of questions per tute however, and the tutor never goes through all of them, so you should expect to go over the rest of them at home.

The FEA part is taught in a ďflipped classroomĒ approach, where you are given the links to 12 lectures of around 12-15 minutes on Youtube beforehand, and you got to listen to 3/4 usually before going to the in-class lecture. Personally, the in-class lectures are a total and utter waste of your time, and I stopped going after the first one. From what I heard from my friends, they got pretty horrible, with the lecturer once spending 30 minutes on a calculation only to find out heíd made a mistake on the first page, and chose to end the lecture there and tell everyone to work it out themselves at home. The content in FEA is fairly straightforward, but they manage to complicate it rather unnecessarily, so Iíd say its best to just use the online lectures as a guide and teach it yourself, as the Midsem is only on FEA and it occurs only a couple of days after the last in-class lecture.
The workshops for FEA are barely related to the content in the lectures or the midsem which struct me as odd initially, but I soon forgot about it as we started using Solidworks to create loading situations of beams, running simulations of that, and though only an introduction, learning how things are actually done in industry. The workshops and using Solidworks was possibly the saving grace for the subject and my favourite part of it as it was incredibly fun, with it being for many people the first time they were doing something like this. The assignment that is the end aim of the workshops however can be incredibly infuriating as it is horribly worded, and incredibly vague, with any one of 5 things at times being a possible answer. This along with very little guidance from the tutors who initially refused to provide any substantial help on something that is worth 20% of the subject, before they realised nearly everyone was absolutely screwed for the assignment and started helping like mad on Discussion Board with 2-3 days before the assignment was due. This led many to work together in groups of 5-6 and bounce ideas off each other, as well as compare with other groups which is basically what got us through it.

The Mechanics module is likely the best of the three, but coming from Engineering Mechanics the semester before; the direct precursor to this which though it was incredibly difficult, was also the best organised and managed subject Iíve done so far, (likely because I was lucky enough to have Hancock as my tutor) will take a bit of a learning curve. Mechanics is generally the module that most students struggle with as a result as the lectures comprising mostly of derivations of equations by Jason off the top of his head in the lecture itself with no specific lecture notes or slides for students to refer to, but rather just a general book on the topics that Jason had put together around 5 years back, and of which around 30-40% he no longer teaches. Much of the rest of the book being stuff that he now teaches differently as students have struggled with it in the past. Lectures therefore can get incredibly messy and confusing leaving you wondering what is even going on. The tutorials therefore become incredibly important and both tutors are luckily very good at what they do, so the key is to ask as many questions as you can of them, and perhaps follow up with questions to Jason after lectures (Jason can also be tough to reach over email, at times choosing to just ignore you, so itís best to get a hold of him after lectures again), ensuring that you totally understand everything as when it comes to the mechanics module in the exam, its almost a case of all or nothing for marks. You either know what to do in the question in which case you will get around 8 or more out of 10, or you donít and you will at best get 1 or 2 marks. Furthermore, there is a significant divide between methods, standards, naming conventions etc that are used between the tutors and Jason, so thats something that you will need to take account of when answering questions in the exam as end of the day, Jason is the one marking, so comply with that as much as possible, but also use certain methods the tutor has taught whilst conforming to the naming conventions and standards of Jason as it is easier at times.

Just a final note on the exam, whilst the Materials and Mechanics modules are weighted evenly (50-50), the actual marks for each are horribly skewed. With Materials being out of 100, whilst Mechanics is only out of 30. (Just another quirk of this subject you got to put up with I guess). So as a result, every mark for Mechanics you get in the exam is basically another mark for the subject. Therefore, itís good to ensure that youíre on top of it, even if youíre not totally 100% with Materials, which most people donít realise until the last minute by which point they have basically given up on Mechanics. Materials is the section that has a few questions repeated word for word every year, with at least 4 or so others being very slight deviations with changes in values and nothing else. It is therefore fairly easy to get marks in it if you do the past exams.

In summary, for those of you doing a Mechanical Major, this subject is a core and you have to do it. Though the subject is incredibly annoying, and you often just want to give up with everything you face, just put up with everything the subject throws at you for a semester and get through it is my advice.  From what Iíve heard, things get much better in Masters. For those of you from Mechatronics or other Engineering Majors who are perhaps looking at taking this as an elective (there were a few in my semester who did this and ended up seriously regretting it), Iíd strongly advise you not to, as itís not worth the time or effort, not to mention the money. I just hope that something changes with this subject as the content itself is pretty good, just that the lazy teaching staff make it really unbearable.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2017, 02:49:05 am by Nightwing »
2012: BM
2013: Physics, Spesh, Methods, English, Economics
ATAR: 97.55

2014 (Sem1): BEnvs
2014 (Sem 2) - 2017 (Sem 1): BSc (Mechanical & Civil Systems)
2014: ENVS10003, ENVS10007, ENVS10001, ENGR10004, MAST10007, PHYC10004
2015: COMP20005, MAST10006, BLAW10001, ENEN20002, ENGR20003, ENGR10003
2016: ENGR20004, MCEN30017, MAST20029, CVEN30008, EVSC30003, MCEN30014, CVEN30009, MCEN30020, SCIE20001

If you need any help or advice, PM me and I'll be happy to lend a hand :P


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #577 on: July 02, 2016, 04:34:24 pm »
Subject Code/Name: GENE20001: Principles of Genetics

Workload: 3 x 1 hour lectures p/week and 1 x 1 hour problem class p/week

Assessment: 3 x MST's (10 % each), 2 hour exam (70%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture for lectures but the problem classes are NOT recorded

Past exams available:  Yes, more than 10 years worth but NO answers

Textbook Recommendation:  Recommended is; A J Griffiths et al, Introduction to Genetic Analysis, 10th Ed. W H Freeman and Co., i had a pdf version but didn't find it very useful, its extremely detailed. Alex, who is the subject coordinator said you can do well with just lecture content.

Lecturer(s): Alex Andrianopoulos (Bacteriophage genetics-12 lecturers), Hayley Bugeja (Mendelian Genetics-10 lectures), Phil Batterman (Population genetics-12 lectures)

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2016

Rating:  3/5

Your Mark/Grade: H2B

Comments: I have mixed feelings regarding this subject. If i had of done the review before the exam i may have given it a 4.5/5, but the exam was one of the worst i have ever sat. Having said that i actually found the content of the subject very interesting. Alex, the subject coordinator stressed at the beginning of the course that this is very much a problem based subject, which is very true, however, one of the issues i had was there were NO answers to past exams. This is also a subject available for credit for both Biomedicine and Science students.

Bacteriophage genetics: This first section of the course was a new concept, not covered in first year genetics. I found it a bit difficult at times to grasp but once i did it was very interesting and overall well taught. We were given and shown step by step how to complete questions in the style that matched those found on the MST. Alex lectures this section of the course and some people didn't like his lecture style because they said he was very slow, but personally i found this good because he explained everything step by step and i found made sure everyone understood what he was saying before he moved on. Very interesting and not too hard once you understand the underlying concepts.

Mendelian Genetics: The second section of the course was lectured by Hayley. Personally i didn't like her lecture style and found that she focussed heavily on theory content and student involvement in lectures through 'socrative' polls rather than teaching and going through styles of questions properly that would be found in MST and exams. I also thought the lectures didn't flow through topics. In my opinion this is the most difficult part of the course anyway because of the unpredictability in question styles. Walking out of any of these lectures i actually didn't feel like i understood the content in relation to a question until i had gone over it again or done a similar question in the problem class. Mendelian genetics does extend on knowledge from first year, so a good understanding of basic principles does help (three factor crosses, epistasis etc.). The MST for this section i found quite hard and didn't do nearly as well as the other two, again i thought this was because it examined styles of questions we had never before come across. Too much Drosophila and since when were Dragons a thing...?

Population Genetics: The third and final section of the course was lectured by Phil. He is probably one of the most entertaining lecturers i have come across so far. Population genetics is by far the easiest section of the course as you just need to memorise question styles and which equations to use as you are given a formula sheet on the exam. They don't actually teach you have to derive any of the equations which i didn't really mind. Even though this section involves mostly maths and calculations, make sure you understand all of the principles of population genetics, as the theory is asked on the exam. The MST was very, very, very easy for this section, all questions we had actually done in lectures or problem classes, just the numbers had been changed and it was only 5 short questions.

Problem Classes: As these were NOT recorded you should attend them all as i found them very, very useful in understanding lecture content properly. The problem classes were lecture style in a lecture theatre and my only complaint would be, the class sizes were too big. Stephen Hardy was the tutor for all of the problem classes and he was fantastic. He made sure every time he went through something that he explained every detail and made sure people understood before he moved on. The problem classes were fantastic as you actually applied the concepts that you had learnt in lectures and Stephen often brought in past exam questions or questions he has written himself to practice. He was also willing to stay after classes to help people understand concepts/problems.

The exam... The exam was entirely MCQ which many people like, however i find it extremely unfair because if you understand the majority of a question and miss the final step you get 0 marks and therefore cannot demonstrate your understanding. Also the questions were often worth 4-6 marks, which again, was unfair. You could have no idea how to do the question, guess and get full marks.

Now keep it mind, i actually really enjoyed the subject overall prior to the exam. I was sitting on a H1 average for the MST's and i had done about 8-9 past exams as practice and all of the practice questions on the LMS and problem classes many times. There were no answers provided for past exams BUT there were some legendary people on the subject Facebook group who decided to create google docs for each past exam for about 5/6 years and all share answers which was a fantastic way of checking working out and asking questions.

Genetics was my first exam and i was actually feeling really confident that i knew all of the styles of questions that had been asked in previous years. This exam was NOTHING like i had ever come across before. Even some questions in Alex's section were of a strange format that we hadn't seen which took time to actually try and work out what the question was asking. Phil's section has some strangely worded section but overall was definitely the reason i passed the exam.

Hayley's section contained a particular 4 part question (30-33) which had a mistake in the wording for question 30-31 which contradicted what the instructions for questions 32-33. This meant that many students (including myself) spent too much time actually trying to understand the question wasting time that could have been used for the remainder of the exam. Also in total questions 30-33 were worth about 18 marks...

Compared to the majority of previous past exams, this was a very challenging exam. Everything on there was taught, so it was fair, but some sections very strangely worded.

So i definitely recommend the subject if you are interested in genetics, BUT make sure you completely and totally understand all of the underlying concepts including the finer detail...


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #578 on: July 03, 2016, 11:01:50 am »
Subject Code/Name: EDUC20068: Sport, Education and the Media

Workload: 1 x 1 hour lecture p/week, 1 x 2 hour tutorial p/week

- 8 Reading Circle entries (summaries of readings)- not marked but completion worth 10%
- 1600 word case study due mid semester (40%)
- 2000 word media analysis on a current sport issue due beginning of exam period (50%)
- also 80% attendance requirement for tutorials
- 2 compulsory field trips- attendance marked
- 2 x 400 word reflections (not graded)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture, but sometimes the slides weren't recorded.

Past exams available:  N/A, sample essays were given for both the case study and media analysis

Textbook Recommendation:  No textbook. Readings were available on the LMS.

Lecturer(s): Anna Krohn, 3 or 4 guest lecturers
Tutors: Anna Krohn and Karen Lyon

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2016

Rating:  5/5

Your Mark/Grade: H1

Comments: This is by far the best subject i have taken so far at the university. As a science student i wanted a breadth that was interesting but did not have a heavy workload and this is exactly what i was looking for.

Overall, it is not a large subject so lectures were in a small lecture theatre and often poorly attended, they were recorded and many people did not attend. The lectures were definitely useful though as you needed references in your case study and media analysis to course material. The various guest lecturers were also very interesting. The tutorials are 2-hours every week but often finished early. Karen Lyon was my tutor and she is fantastic. As an ex sports journalist she is extremely knowledgable on sport and the media within sport and many tutorials were spent having in-depth discussions around current issues within sport.

Throughout the semester, you have reading circles to complete (10%). You are assigned reading circle groups in the first tutorial where you each complete a reading each week and then post a 400 word summary of the reading for the group to see. These are used as references in assignments. My only complaint would be that these readings can be quite long, some 20 pages. Creating a Facebook group or a Google Docs is a great way of sharing the reading circles.

In the first past of semester, we focus on sport and how it has developed, sport and children, women in sport, etc. These form the topics you can choose from for your case study. You are provided with scenarios based on each topic and you have to perform a case study in response to the scenario. For example, choosing children and sport you got a topic saying friends of yours had young children 5 and 11 who wanted to start sport. Drawing on everything you looked at in tutorials, readings and lectures you have to advise them what sports to play and what the right age to start playing sport is.

Then you move onto social aspects of sport. The first compulsory field trip was to the Ian Potter Museum on campus. This is done with your tutorial group. We split up into small groups and had to look through all the exhibitions in the gallery. We then had to choose a piece of sport-related art and write a 400 word reflection on what it meant to us. This was not graded, simply a hurdle task. The second compulsory field trip was to the MCG. We were given a free guided tour of the MCG which was very interesting and then taken down to the sports museum. After playing in the interactive area, we had to again choose a piece from one of the exhibitions to write a 400 word reflection, again a hurdle requirement.

The final part of the course covers sport in the media and is probably the most difficult to understand coming from a science background. The media aspect covers issues with sport and the media, how women are portrayed, media power within sport, etc. I found this section to be extremely interesting. The most important lectures and tutorials to attend are covering the 5 social theories and how to relate them to sport. This is critical to understand well as the final essay is centred on social theories.

The final essay is due in the first week of the examination period, so it is a good idea to start it before the semester finishes so it doesn't get in the way of studying for other exams. This essay is 2000 words (+/- 10%) and is split into two separate topics. In the first part of the essay you have to take two newspapers (example- the age and the Australian) and analyse their readership, target audience, articles, images and sporting section and compare the two. This section should be about 40% of the essay, not the major mark. The analysis of the sporting sections should be in detail. The second and major part of the essay is where you choose one or two articles on a current sporting issue and analyse them, like a language analysis and then relate at least 2 social theories to the sporting issue chosen. For example, Russian doping saga. Functionalist and conflict theories are probably the easiest to write on and interactionist is probably the hardest.

If you like sport and are interested in the role the media plays within sport i definitely recommend this subject. I love sport and i loved this subject. I thought the tutorials were fantastic and often consisted of group discussions about current sport issues, which were often very interesting. If you put in the hard work it is a pretty easy and enjoyable subject.


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #579 on: July 03, 2016, 10:39:17 pm »
Subject Code/Name: MCEN30017: Mechanics & Materials 

3 1hr lectures each week
1 1hr tutorial each week
3 2hr FEA (Finite Element Analysis) workshops in the semester
2 2hr Practicals in the semester

Exam: 60%
2 Practicals: 15% (7.5% each)
FEA mid semester test: 5%
FEA assignment: 20%

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  Yes, but no solutions

Textbook Recommendation:  Yes, a Prescribed textbook
Callister WD Jr, Materials Science and Engineering. 

Dr Xia for Materials
Jason Monty for Mechanics
Dr Mohsen for FEA

Year & Semester of completion: 2016 Sem 1

Rating:2.5 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: H2A

TL;DR Subject has A LOT of content, that is poorly taught and poorly coordinated. Lectures were terrible, and the tutorials were seriously rushed. The materials content can be easily learned through the textbook, whilst the mechanics component requires alot of practise and self study to learn.
The written reports were tedious but are a good opportunity to learn the content. FEA report was seriously tough and annoying, but thank heavens the exam was fair.  Subject requires constant amount of work but the content was interesting enough for me to give it an average rating. 

Overall this was an interesting subject but it was undermined by the terrible lectures and lack of resources

The lectures were horrrible, and terribly coordinated, its what made the subject annoying and made me lose interest in the subject.

For the materials component, you cant even understand the guy, and he just repeats on whats written on the slides, which are a carbon cut copy of the textbook that only tell half the story.
Honestly,youre better off reading the lecture slides and reading the textbook, and you will be set in learning the materials component. The content begins with material chemistry that was taught in Engineering Materials (they teach it from scratch since its not a pre req) and then builds on things like material strengthening, softening, fracture, fatigue and crystallographic orientations. The concepts are not too bad, and the lecture slides were good enough to understand what type of questions will be asked

The mechanics lectures were terrible. Not only is the content like Engineering Mechanics on drugs, but the lecturer is never organised and constantly makes mistakes, which only makes it even harder to learn the content, since the only source of information to refer to, has mistakes. Lack of examples and constant derivation of complex formulas in the lectures only made things worse

Lastly there is the FEA component, which is taught during week 7, for the mid sem. There are about 12 online 15min lectures that you are required to watch, and the lectures in that week are just a summary of those online lectures. The content can be abit dry and tedious but luckily there are enough resources and practice questions to master this.

they are really helpful but there is no requirement to rock up to them.  I for myself always attend tutorials since they serve as a good guideline by attempting exam style questions with explanations on how to do them. Unfortunately, the tutors were just rushing on the questions which for a slow poke like me, meant that I had to review the tutorial questions with the worked solutions again,
I would however recommend it for everyone since theyre really helpful in actually learning the component. Especially for the mechanics component that had disastrous lectures and lack of lecture examples.

there were 2 practicals that were held,
1. Tensile testing
2. impact testing

the pracs themselves were chill and having small prac sessions were helpful since the tutors literally did the whole thing, which made it easier to avoid mistakes.
The reports were really long and tedious, and required alot of graphs and research for the discussion questions.
The textbook was really helpful and paraphrasing the theoretical concepts meant that anyone can do well on these reports.

this component is really helpful for both Mechanical and Civil, since it actually introduces the concept of CAD through SolidWorks that was taught really well in the Workshops.
The assignment was about designing a beam and bracket, and optimising its properties to reduce the total stresses applied in the material. It involves using your engineering knowledge to pick the best material and dimensions to improve the beam and the assignment was just about doing questions, it was more like a written assessment
The due  date was right at the end of week 12, which made it annoying, and i would recommend it to not leave it at the last  minute like I did.

The midsem of FEA was held during week 7,  and the questions can get abit annoying, but its not too bad. There were a set of practice questions with fully worked solutions provided as a resource and going through them was sufficient enough to learn the content.

was fair, but I could have done better. The materials component is alot like the past exams, and doing the tute and textbook questions were helpful.
There was NO FEA IN THE EXAM, since all of it was assessed in the assignment and midsem.

the mechanics component was tough and varied in each exam. Lack of content and terrible lectures made it harder than it should be. Another thing to note is that there is no formula sheet on the exam. They want you to understand the content or derive these formulas that youer better off just memorising.
Obviously this made it harder since there were atleast 20 formulas to know.
I guess this was done to limit the amount of H1s in the batch, since the exam could have been far worse than what everyone expected
« Last Edit: July 03, 2016, 10:42:20 pm by QUADRATUS »


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #580 on: July 05, 2016, 02:38:53 am »
Subject Code/Name: MCEN30017 Mechanics and Materials 

Workload:  3 lectures a week for 12 weeks (1 hr lectures)
1 1hr tutorials in weeks 1-6, 9-12: 5 for materials, 4 for mechanics
3 2hr FEA (Finite Element Analysis) workshops in the semester
2 2hr Practicals (both for materials) in the semester

2 Lab reports for the practicals, each 7.5%
FEA (finite element analysis) report 20%
1 hr mid sem test for FEA in week 6 5%
3 hrs end of sem exam (only assess mechanics and materials no FEA) 60%

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes with screen capture.

Past exams available:  Yes, about 3 in library some more was given in LMS

Textbook Recommendation:  Callister WD Jr, Materials Science and Engineering 9th ed, Mechanics of Materials James M. Gere 8th edition, A first course in Finite Element by Jacob Fish any edition

Lecturer(s): Dr Xia for Materials
Jason Monty for Mechanics
Dr Mohsen for FEA

Year & Semester of completion: sem 1 2016

Rating: 4 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: 94

-Materials: We learn about atomic bonding from scratch, building up to crystal structures and on to dislocations, elastic and plastic deformations, stregthening and softening methods, fracture, fatigue, and creep. Many dislike the lectures while I find it actually pretty interesting. Granted the lecture slides are just copy paste from the textbook, and the way he lectures (points to the lecture slides and talks for an hour) may put you to sleep. However he actually shows us some videos about the implementation of the ideas we learn in class (like creep effects on airplane turbine) which is cool. Kenong assesses more stuff than just whatever is in the textbook (i.e. mechanism of plastic deformation) and this is not in his lecture slides but rather he explains it on the board so go to the lectures. He replies to my emails fast and doesnt really want to answer questions through email i.e. you have to make appointments with him. I did this and although granted he was your typical grumpy guy, he actually teaches me about how to answer the past exam questions that I attempted better and more coherent and gave me some study tips which really helped me to do well in the exam. So don't take his grumpiness personally when answering your emails and just go make consultations with him ;make sure you have attempted the question first. To pass the exam my advice is to read the book and do the suggested problems that he gives in the LMS as well as redo the prac questions (which is actually some of the suggested problems from the textbook which sucks). Also do the concept check questions in the Callister book they are very good in testing your understanding. On top of that Google and practuce some more questions from other unis; I did mine from MIT opencourse thing. My exam was very similar to the past exam (some question were just blatant copy paste) but then that might well change with your exam.
When you do your labs make sure you have read the textbook before you go do the lab so that you can ask questions to the demonstrator before its too late; especially read about polymer deformation stuff because it is not taught in lectures but you have to understand it in order to be able to do the lab reports. The demonstrators were good; they replied to my emails fast and didn't withheld information. The lab reports are long and tedious (generating a lot of graphs on excel and whatnot) so do it early.

FEA: You have to watch 12 15 mins lectures on youtube; that's the assessed content. The in class lectures are just explaining the importance of checking your FEA work and some stories about how FEA was used to create blablabla so not assessed. Nevertheless the lecturer also did some worked examples in the lectures. I didn't go to the in class lectures cause assignments are more important to do rather than listening to non assessed stuff. These stuff are assessed in the mid test only; nothing on FEA in the final exam. The mid test was easy; make sure you read the book and understand it to be able to do the mid test. Practice problems with solutions (problems copy pasted from the book) were available in LMS.
The other part of FEA is the workshops. It involves using CAD software Solidworks to do FEA using a computer rather than by hand. The demonstrators were excellent in both helping in class as well as clarifying questions about the assignment. The assignment was a pain in the neck; so many simulations to do and if you dont have Windows and have to use the uni computer you might have to wait for 2 hours for the FEA results to arise. The wordings were also a bit vague but the demonstrators were great in answering us; they answer through the discussion board. Do this assignment early on; there is a ton of questions to answer and you will not get it right the first time.

Mechanics: The lectures were alright I guess. Granted the lecturer sometimes make mistakes and whatnot but still the way he proves the theorems and his explanations were helpful for me. His lecture style (writes on the document camera) was excellent because his lecture pace is then the same with my note taking pace.The tutes are very important go to the tutes the tutors are great they explain things very well and answers ur questions thoroughly. You might be tempted to skip them because the lecturer will give out worked solutions but then again those solutions were sometimes wrong and the tutors will warn you about this in the tutes so go to the tutes! Get the book for mechanics and do the back of the book practice problems. Consult Hibbeler or some other textbooks for some topics that are not covered in the recommended textbook (e.g. virtual work). There is a ton of stuff that you need to remember and able to do for mechanics and my advice is to do as many problems as you can; even the ones that you think are too hard and won't likely be in the exam. Also consult other universities for practice problems (access the lecturer's web index) because more likely you're gonna get worked solutions that way compared to just doing problems from the book. You'll have to book consultations with Jason by email in Swotvac. The tutor also helps you during swotvac about any questions provided you email them first about it; they didnt mention their availability in class.

Overall this subject requires every single bit of your time; so many things jammed in so little time. Do everything early because you'll make mistakes and you'll need time to correct them. Teaching staff doesnt publish constulation times; gotta be proactive and email them about it. Don't take the rudeness of some of the teaching staff personally and just ask to meet them in person if you have any questions; they actually helped me more than I asked them for even though with a bit of a grumpiness. Rudeness doesn't mean apathy.


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #581 on: July 05, 2016, 07:09:06 am »
Subject Code/Name: PHRM30009 Drugs in Biomedical Experiments 

Workload:  There are two (1 hr) workshops and a practical (3 hrs) per week. The first workshop includes all students in the subject and is run in a theatre, whereas the second workshop precedes your particular practical class and is generally run in the lab.

Assessment:  A 20% mid-semester test, 40% exam, 40% continued assessment of pracs

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture for the workshops in a lecture theatre only.

Past exams available:  Two practice mid-semester tests with no solutions provided, one past exam with thoroughly worked solutions provided and a couple of practice questions with no solutions

Textbook Recommendation:  A laboratory manual is provided for free, but you need to purchase a laboratory notebook for about $20.

Lecturer(s): Michael Lew, Christine Keenan, Rosa McCarty, James Ziogas, Alastair Stewart, Tony Hughes, probably more

Year & Semester of Completion: 2016, Semester 1

Rating: 3/5

Your Mark/Grade: I scraped an H1

I'm reviewing this subject because the previous one is quite old and brief.

You don't need to have done any prior pharmacology to choose this subject, but it helps. Most students completing this subject are majoring in pharmacology or medicinal chemistry (since it is compulsory for them), but I included it as a part of a biochemistry/molecular biology major.

The best part of this subject is that there are no lectures, hence barely any content to "memorise". The workshops are just used for a bit of admin, to go through theory for the pracs (generally too detailed to actually be assessed but helps you understand what you are doing and why), or to go through the class results in detail (quite important).

All pracs are done in pairs or groups of three, and if you haven't done much pharmacology someone in your group will have so you can learn off each other. The pracs aren't very stressful compared to other prac subjects because you aren't really assessed on your performance in the prac. There are a few demonstrators that roam around the lab, beware that some of them are more helpful than others. If you stuff up a prac, it isn't a big deal because the assessment mainly uses class results and gives you room to suggest possible causes of errors, just ensure that you write what happened in your notebook.

The subject is broken into five distinct blocks/sets of experiments. The continued assessment of practicals that is worth 40% comprises:
----- A laboratory notebook entry each week (10%): I found this the worst part of assessment for the subject, not because it was particularly difficult, but rather the expectations were poorly outlined. I tended to get into a lot of detail at the beginning of semester but realised that it took too much time for what it was worth after a few weeks. This is assessed once at the end of semester, which I thought didn't really provide us with an opportunity to improve our entries throughout the semester. I would have preferred them to check it twice, once earlier on in the semester so that we could get feedback and fix our mistakes in later pracs. During the final prac class, a mark is put in your book to indicate where you are up to so you can keep it for revision purposes. I personally didn't use it much for exam revision, and would have preferred them to grade it so we could get our marks before the final exam.
----- Block 1 (about responses to capsaicin) was only assessed in the MST and exam: I think this block of pracs was just included to warm us up into prac work and help us practice our pipetting skills.
----- Block 2 (about drug effects and receptors) required some graphical analysis and answering a few questions (5%): The pracs for this block were just doing a bunch of organ bath experiments and making a lot a concentration response curves. Then, you get to spend two weeks designing your own experiment/hypothesis and then testing it (rather than follow a protocol in the lab manual) which is something I believe is unique to this prac subject. Again, I felt that they didn't provide us with clear expectations for the assessment of this block. I would have liked an assessment rubric, but I think they mark it by comparing your work to others in the cohort rather than looking for specific expected details in your answers. Anyway, you need to go into a lot of detail for the questions section to achieve a good mark. The average was 19/28, pretty low compared to assessments later on.
----- Block 3 (about toxicity of prednisolone) required you to analyse the class results (7.5%) and peer-assessment (2.5%): The single prac for this block involved a mouse dissection which was pretty fun. It was run by Rosa, who I reckon was one of the better lecturers who made an effort to integrate the five blocks. There is a bit of focus on immunology in this block, as you will be removing and analysing the spleen and thymus, and need to be able to in identify a few cell types using microscopy. The assignment for this block is marked by your peers, and the median mark they give ends up being your mark out of 7.5%, but you also get a free 2.5% on top of that for marking five of your peers.
----- Block 4 (about drug discovery and high-throughput screening) is assessed by a group assignment (7.5%): This block is run by Alastair Stewart, and you go through how a pharmaceutical company would go about finding new drugs. For the assessment, you are provided with around five Standard Operating Procedures that you need to mark as a group of 4-6. The mark you get is determined by how closely the marks your group gives correlates to the official marks for that SOP. There are also some general questions you need to do and a few calculations for the cost of a hypothetical high-throughput screen. The average was 82/100. There was also a molecular modelling prac in this block which was done entirely on the computers and run by Tony Hughes. You looked at X-ray crystallography structures for human beta-adrenoceptors, aquaporin and ubiquitin.
----- Block 5 (about beta-blockers and clinical trials) is assessed by a written abstract (7.5%): This prac was sort of like a mock (single-blind) clinical trial, in that you are given (if you are healthy and wanted to) either atenolol, pindolol or a placebo after taking baseline cardiovascular measurements, and you observe their effects. You use stationary exercise bikes, and measure parameters like heart rate, blood pressure, facial temperature and peak expiratory flow rate. I found this prac really fun. The abstract is restricted to 1 A4 page, and the average was 18/20.

There was a general consensus on my prac bench that the feedback was sub-par. You aren't clearly told why you lost marks for these assignments, but are just given a generic document about the overall performance of the class. Given that there were only 80 students, I think they definitely could have given slightly more individualised feedback, especially for the group assignment. For the MST, you are just given a mark and they don't go through common errors or the correct answers. It wasn't difficult and didn't require you to memorise any theory, but the average was 24/34 probably due to how different it was to the practice material they provided. The exam was in a similar format to the MST, but I found it a bit harder. There is no multiple choice on either MST or exam, it's mainly either calculations/match the graph to a statement or short answer questions where you explain a set of provided results. I liked that the concepts are more important than fine details that would be rote learned in other subjects.

The workshop slides aren't put up on the LMS, which I found really annoying. And the workshops run in the lab aren't recorded which was a shame since it was quite hard to get everything down if you zone out during the 4 hours. This doesn't end up being a big issue since you aren't assessed in that way in the exam. The laboratory manual provided wasn't very detailed (compared to other prac subjects). I think it would have been better if they included some specific background knowledge/theory rather than links to other resources/papers, but it's all explained in the workshop preceding the prac anyway.

Overall, the subject is definitely on the easier side with interesting content but the coordination/feedback could be improved.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 07:54:19 am by VCEANON »
B-BMED (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) | 2014-2016


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #582 on: July 05, 2016, 12:25:22 pm »
Subject Code/Name: FNCE20003 Introductory Personal Finance

Workload:  Weekly: 1 x 2 hour lecture, 1 x 1 hour tutorial

Assessment:  "App challenge" assignment worth 10%, 1 hour MST worth 20%, 2 hour end of semester exam worth 70%

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available:  Semester 1 2015 past MST available. Semester 1 2014 past exam available, and practice questions. These were released on the LMS before each of their corresponding assessments.

Textbook Recommendation:  "Recommended" textbook: Taylor, S. and Juchau, R. Financial Planning in Australia. 2015 Essentials Edition. LexisNexis, Chatswood. 2015.

Not needed, although I probably would have done better had I completed the readings at least once.

Lecturer: Carsten Murawski

Year & Semester of completion: 2016 semester 1

Rating:  3.5/5

Your Mark/Grade: 81% - H1


Introductory Personal Finance (IPF) is an entry point into becoming a financial advisor. I believe it contributes to some sort of certification for financial advisors, but I am unfamiliar with the industry.

It is worth noting I took this subject as a breadth, and do not have any experience with commerce with the exception of Finance 1. Thus those doing a B-COM may have a different experience with the subject.

Each lecture briefly covers one topic. The topics are:
  • Financial well-being and financial planning
  • Cash flow and budgeting
  • Asset allocation and risk management + investing in shares
  • Securing credit
  • Investing in property
  • Superannuation and retirement
  • Finance and ageing
  • Insurance
  • "Emergency finance"
  • Providing financial advice
  • Where to for personal finance - a summary lecture

This has been my only subject with 2 hour lectures, which I found extremely tedious. Generally, the 1st hour Murawski uses describing various statistics. Often this hour is rather depressing, as he highlights various problems that the financial industry faces. The 2nd hour is largely focused on describing the various financial decisions within each topic, e.g. different types of shares, different types of insurance, different types of superannuation contributions etc.

I found that most of the learning occurred in the tutorials.

Overall, I have found the content of this subject to be fairly practical - it pertains to decisions we will all likely make in the future. However, much of the time the content is also common sense. I also found it to be fairly dry, but no more so than Finance 1.

The assignment was very frustrating. It was a group assignment that involved designing an app that is intended to aid people with their finances. The assignment included describing the function of the app; who would use the app and why, including an estimate of the number of users; how the app would function, sufficient for a programmer to develop the app; an estimate of the timeline; and an estimate of the financial plan for development of the app.
This assignment was only introduced last semester. I am unaware if it will continue to be used.

The MST comprised 34 MCQs, most of which were taken from the past MST. The MST was very easy, and most people would have finished at around 34 minutes, when we had an hour to complete the MST.

The final exam comprised 9 long-answer questions. There was a mix of calculation questions and extended response questions.
Given that questions on the MST were largely taken from the past MST, I assumed that this would also be the case with the final exam, and decided just to memorise the questions/answers on the past exam. However, this was not the case. ~7 of the 9 questions were not on the past exam nor on the practice questions. In retrospect, I would have been better off reviewing each of the lectures - the questions were fairly evenly spread across each of the topics.

The subject was fairly easy; for the most part, I didn't do any study for it during the semester, and crammed my revision for the final exam into the 5 days after all my other exams.

Whilst the result was somewhat disappointing, I do not regret taking this subject. The skills and knowledge taught in the subject outweigh the cost of one mediocre result. However, I am unsure as to if this knowledge is new to those undertaking a B-COM, but it was definitely valuable for someone with limited prior financial knowledge.


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #583 on: July 05, 2016, 08:16:19 pm »
Subject Code/Name: CVEN90043 Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering 

Workload:  1 x 2 hour lecture, 1 x 2 hour workshops

Assessment:  2 hour exam (35% - hurdle requirement), workshop attendance (10% - hurdle requirement), 6 executive summaries (25% - hurdle requirement), 10 minute group presentation (10%) and a major group assignment (20%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with/without screen capture

Past exams available: No. Four sample multiple choice questions were provided, and outline of case study was provided.   

Textbook Recommendation:  No required textbooks

Lecturer(s): Prof Anne Steinemann along with different guest lecturers each week

Year & Semester of completion: 2016, Semester 1

Rating:  2/5

Your Mark/Grade: N/A


Where do I start with this subject? The guest lecturers are interesting, but this is overshadowed by administration issues that plagued this subject throughout the semester. Firstly, this subject has a HUGE workload. In the first week, you're put into a group, and then you choose a case study to research over the semester.

Each fortnight you're also assigned a smaller case study to write an executive summary on, along with using a sustainability model to analyse the case study. These case studies will constantly interfere with the major case study, and technical glitches with TurnItIn meant sometimes waiting 1 month+ for feedback on the executive summary. There was also a huge amount of inconsistency in grading and advice often conflicted (i.e. being told to reference material, and then being told not to). The last executive summary was done in an exam-style setting, where a 398 document was given to students 4 days before earliest sitting of the case-study.

The 2 hour workshops would be conducted in a small-medium-sized lecture theatre that would sit roughly 50 students. Students would be expected to engage in active discussion (in order to be ticked off for one week) in such a large room, to the point that you'd probably only be talking for roughly 90s in the 2 hour session. These workshops are WAY TOO BIG for what they're trying to accomplish.

The exam was a 2 hour exam where you would have to answer 30 multiple choice questions, write an executive summary and use an appropriate model to analyse a question asked.

Bottomline, yes, the lectures were interesting. The subject is useful for anyone studying to become an engineer, but it was run terribly.
2008: Finished VCE

2009 - 2011: Bachelor of Science (Mathematical Physics)

2012 - 2014: Master of Science (Applied Mathematics/Mathematical Physics)

2016 - 2018: Master of Engineering (Civil)

Semester 1:[/b] Engineering Mechanics, Fluid Mechanics, Engineering Risk Analysis, Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering

Semester 2:[/b] Earth Processes for Engineering, Engineering Materials, Structural Theory and Design, Systems Modelling and Design


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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #584 on: July 05, 2016, 08:59:15 pm »
Subject Code/Name: ENGR30002 Fluid Mechanics 

Workload:  3 x 1 hour lecture per week, 1 x 1 hour tutorial per week, 1 x 2 hour laboratory work per semester

Assessment:  1 lab report (10%), 2 assignments (20%) and a 3 hour exam (70% - hurdle requirement)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with or without screen capture

Past exams available:  No. But there were 10 sample questions

Textbook Recommendation:  No prescribed or required textbooks, lectures are self-contained

Lecturer(s): Dr Daniel Heath, Dr Marco Ghisalberti

Year & Semester of completion: 2016, Semester 1

Rating:  5/5

Your Mark/Grade: P


Despite my low score in this subject (exam marking must've been harsh), I really enjoyed it. The subject started off with Marco introducing the basic laws such as: conservation of mass, momentum and energy. The next topic was dimensional analysis to get relationships between fluid properties. Here we were also introduced to the Reynolds number, Bond number, Weber number and Froude number. The next topic was looking at pipe flow before Daniel took over to discuss pumps, compressible flow (flow of gases - toughest topic), and stirred tanks. Then Marco took over to finish off with open channel flow, the Navier-Stokes equation in a reasonably simplistic form, and then hydrostatics.

The two lecturers differed in how they taught. Marco would write on partially completed pages, work on problems in class and provide summary sheets of material after each topic was concluded. Daniel opted for slides which would be harder to digest (I learn through writing).

I would've preferred assignments to be a little more spread out, as the two assignments were handed out in the second half of the semester during crunch time. One thing that irritated me, was the fact that the exam contributed to 70% of your grade. An exam that's worth that much, should be split into two exams (one during the middle of the semester, and one at the end)

Anyway, it was a really enjoyable, technical subject.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 09:29:56 pm by QuantumJG »
2008: Finished VCE

2009 - 2011: Bachelor of Science (Mathematical Physics)

2012 - 2014: Master of Science (Applied Mathematics/Mathematical Physics)

2016 - 2018: Master of Engineering (Civil)

Semester 1:[/b] Engineering Mechanics, Fluid Mechanics, Engineering Risk Analysis, Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering

Semester 2:[/b] Earth Processes for Engineering, Engineering Materials, Structural Theory and Design, Systems Modelling and Design