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Author Topic: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings  (Read 1076828 times)  Share 

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LeviLamp

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #465 on: June 27, 2015, 09:50:13 am »
+5
Subject Code/Name: ZOOL30006 Animal Behaviour 

Workload:  3 x lectures/week (but only 30 total), 3 x review tutorials, 3 x N&V tutorials, 5 x multimedia presentations (these were documentaries simply played in the lecture theatre - they were absolutely useless in terms of the course, and the first one in particular was an outdated video pushing human superiority by repeatedly reminding us all animals do is respond complexly to environmental cues (which is literally the same for humans), though subsequent documentaries were quite interesting, if you really want to stay).

Assessment:

News & Views Article - 25%

Spoiler
For this assessment, you pick a recent scientific article and then present a summation and critique of the paper's themes and methods in a strange format called a News and Views article. News and Views articles are a form of writing found in the journal Nature, and are like a halfway point between layman's terms and full-blown scientific writing (though to be honest they lean quite strongly toward the latter). The idea behind this assignment is that communication skills are important in science (fair enough), but the vague and ill-explained format of the piece was a definite negative (there were tutorials run for this assignment, which were helpful, but they could have been so much more useful than they were). I don't think the format of any of the student pieces I read, nor my own, actually matched the real N&V template. Both a hard and soft copy are required to be submitted. Word count penalties were vague, but don't risk it - the standard +/-10% rule applies.

Submitting a satisfactory and COMPLETE draft is a hurdle requirement for the subject - this is to ensure that everyone can do full peer reviews for the pieces they receive. The good copy is marked by the lecturers, and you will later receive a "breakdown" of the marks, which is really just a list of scores for each criterion (criteria we didn't get given prior to submission). This breakdown is released several days after the overall score, so be patient! The articles were not marked leniently, and the score breakdown was really not useful in pinpointing any areas for improvement whatsoever. There were several score categories for which not one student (out of over 100) received full marks. A couple of the categories I lost marks for seemed unreasonable after I checked over my paper - further, some criteria had unrealistic expectations. The "understanding of the issues" criterion awarded a 2/4 if your understanding was "solid, but uninspiring". I can safely say that I understood my paper inside out (and I'm not just being arrogant here - I absolutely did), and the reviews I got for my piece backed this up. Receiving a 2/4 for my understanding of the issues was a little disheartening. I also received 3.5/4 for five categories (these five were ones in which not one person got a 4, with the exception of a single person in one of the five) - why? Thankfully, a high quality of writing and good scholarship (lots of appropriate references) will buffer your mark, so please try and excel in these areas when writing your piece. Emailing Mark about this assignment, he simply told me that rather than losing marks, I had "gained marks for my level of insight" and gave no further useful feedback. He is open to email discussion, but it often doesn't achieve anything even if you follow up on these replies. I received 83% for this assessment, though (as for many people) the scores that comprised this overall grade were unevenly very high and very low, depending on the criteria.

Peer Reviews of Draft N&V Article - 3 x 5 = 15%

Spoiler
These involved filling in numerous commentary boxes on a system called PRAZE in order to give people feedback about the draft N&V articles they'd uploaded to PRAZE. Make sure you go really in-depth when giving these reviews, and read the original papers the articles are based on before giving feedback - these reviews are not free marks. I wrote over 6000 words of review material in total - 2000 words for 5%. It is possible to receive 100% for these reviews, but don't underestimate the level of depth you need to go into.

Final "Exam" - 60%

Spoiler
This exam, unlike most sit-down exams, does not directly assess the theory you've learnt throughout the semester. Instead, you are given excerpts from eight different recent research studies and then asked ~three vague questions about the data. Obviously, you will need to incorporate some understanding of course material into these answers, but much of them hinges on being able to quickly interpret the unfamiliar data and then decide what it's trying to show, and how it shows it. Two hours was not enough time to interpret the confusing figures and vague descriptions of the study, and then give in-depth answers to all the questions. I also felt that about 95% of the course content didn't come up at all - and I'm referring only to the theory, not the illustrative animal examples we were given. My advice is to, rather than look at the ridiculously in-depth answers given on the sample exam answer sheet and then panic about this exam, do the practice exam, read as many of the lecture papers as possible, and try to avoid panic in the exam. I'm not really sure how we were expected to produce the sort of immensely complex answers Mark expects in two hours under pressure - reading the study excerpts was time-consuming enough. It is very easy to waste too much time trying and failing to understand how a figure explains the concepts the questions are asking you to link the figure to (the figures were by no means straightforward for most of the questions, and given no part of the course involved learning how to interpret complex graphical data or studies, it seems a bit rude to weight it so heavily on the exam). Good luck trying to H1 this exam - you'll need it. Mark gave the answer of a cocoordinator and fellow staff member an 8/10, without time pressure constraints, so how an extremely rushed, unpolished and inaccurate answer from a 2 hour exam is going to score marks is beyond me. The exam is not only hard to finish well, it's just hard to finish. I and two of the people around my exam seat failed to finish the exam - my friends who did had all overprepared and were writing furiously throughout the exam. This sort of assessment would have been infinitely better as a take-home exam or assignment; these would have also allowed for more in-depth and inclusive questions to be asked, in an appropriate forum.

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, without screen capture. Previous years have used screen capture, but Mark Elgar dislikes it. To quote:
"I’m not a big fan of providing audio and visual notes of lectures to students, especially because it removes an important generic/life skill from attending lectures – the capacity to hear something, take notes and then be able to broadly understand and recall what was said.  You don’t get these skills if we provide all of those resources." The fact that all I ever achieved attending his lectures was a 50-minute nap probably suggests that the 20 or so people who emailed him asking for recordings had a point. But audio is fine - you'll have access to the slides.

Past exams available:  Yes, one. Answers are provided. This exam will terrify you. I recommend doing it just so you realise how appalling the final exam's format is.

Textbook Recommendation:  There's a recommended textbook, but nobody ever mentioned it. I think it'd be helpful in understanding the content, but since that's mostly irrelevant to the final exam anyway, you're crazy if you buy this for ZOOL30006.

Lecturer(s): Mark Elgar, Raoul Mulder, Devi Stuart-Fox and Theresa Jones. Tim Jessop took one non-examinable lecture on hormones, but is leaving for Deakin after this semester.

Lecture Topics - they sound like more fun than they are
L1: Introduction
L2: Asking Questions in Animal Behaviour
L3: Methods of Studying Animal Behaviour
L4: Genes and Behaviour
L5: Phenotypic Plasticity and Learning
L6: Hormones and Behaviour
L7: Economic Decisions
L8: Living in Groups
L9: Defensive Coloration in Prey
L10: Communication and Signal Honesty
L11: Environmental Influences on Signal Design
L12: Coevolution and Interspecific Relationships
L13: Competition for Resources
L14: Game Theory
L15: Strategies, Tactics and Personalities
L16: Evolutionary Arms Races
L17: Sexual Selection
L18: Mate Choice
L19: Sperm Competition
L20: Sexual Conflict
L21: Parental Care
L22: Family Conflicts
L23: Mating Systems
L24: Sex Allocation
L25: Altruism and Spite
L26: Kinship and Byproduct Mutualism
L27: Reciprocity and Enforcement
L28: Eusociality I
L29: Eusociality II
L30: Practical Applications of Animal Behaviour

Year & Semester of completion:

Rating: 2.5 out of 5. Points for legitimately interesting lecture content, good coordinator communication and real-world relevance. No points whatsoever for assessment or the ability of the coordinator to understand how to appropriately formulate a subject aimed at undergraduate students and not 50 year-old tenured professors. Seriously, Mark.

Your Mark/Grade: H1 (83) - I think there was gratuitous scaling involved here.

Comments:

Unless you're extremely enthusiastic about zoology, do NOT do this subject. The content seems well-suited to a person who wants to take a casual elective on the side and learn a bit about why animals do the everyday things that make them so cute, but it's deceptively dry. Raoul, Theresa and Devi are all good lecturers, and the content itself is quite insightful and thought-provoking, and makes a reasonable amount of sense (though remembering and applying it under exam pressure is another question entirely). Mark and Theresa respond rapidly to student queries, and do attempt to communicate with the class. However, this is where the positives end. Mark is not a switched-on educator - this is not only my opinion, but that of literally everyone I've ever talked to during this subject, as well as people from the previous two cohorts. His expectations are unrealistic, his and Raoul's assessment design has lofty goals to assess students' in-depth understanding but falls critically short and connects badly with the course, Mark's responses to students imply that as a tenured researcher his ideas and decisions are better than that of students, who are simply lazy or don't appreciate the nature of how science works, and even Mark's own lectures leave something to be desired - he waxes lyrical about his own research and talks at the speed of peak hour Hoddle Street traffic. What makes it worse is that the staff are all clearly trying to make the subject a good one that opens students' eyes to a more realistic world of science. Instead, they seem to get caught up in their own ideals and have created a subject I really can't say was more than lackluster. The negatives outweigh the positives, and the exam is an instant no-no if you have any sort of anxiety issues under pressure. I've come out of this subject and its decent lectures with a better appreciation for the evolutionary basis behind animal and human behaviours, and how selfish we all really are, but I still wish I'd never done it.

(P.S. Devi and Theresa are amazing lecturers and gorgeous people; Raoul is also fairly good. No hating on their content delivery here.)
« Last Edit: March 08, 2016, 03:16:33 am by LeviLamp »
VCE: Chemistry | Biology (2011) | English (2011) | Environmental Science | Mathematical Methods CAS

2013-2015: BSc [Zoology] @ UoM | DLang [German - DISCONTINUED]
2016: GDSc [Botany] @ UoM
2017-2018: MSc [Biosciences - Zoology] @ UoM

Summer: BOTA30006

S1: BOTA20001 | EVSC20004 | BOTA30003 | BIOL90001

S2: GEOG20009 | BOTA30002 | BOTA30005 | EVSC20003 | NRMT90002

Subject and major reviews incoming :)

sheepgomoo

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #466 on: June 29, 2015, 12:51:10 pm »
+5
Subject Code/Name: BLAW30004 Competition and Consumer Law

Workload:  1x2hr Lecture, 1x1hr Tute

Assessment:  30% 2000 word Assignment (in pairs), 70% 2hr+30mins Open Book Final Exam

Lectopia Enabled:  None.

Past exams available:  Yes, 1 exam.

Textbook Recommendation: Australian Competition Law (2nd ed, 2013) (LexisNexis); and Consumer Protection Law in Australia (2nd ed, 2013) (LexisNexis) by Alex Bruce. Not very necessary. I never did the readings, and didn’t feel like I needed to do them. Only used the competition book to clarify a few areas, so I suggest borrowing from the library.

Lecturer(s): Arlen Duke, Rhonda Smith

Year & Semester of completion: 2015 Sem 1

Rating: 4 Out of 5

Comments:

Content: The course is split into two main topics with Consumer Law covering the first half and Competition Law covering the second half.

The lectures are generally taken by both lecturers, with Rhonda going through the economic principles and reasoning behind the legal framework, and Arlen through the specific legislation. Lectures are NOT recorded, so make sure you take lots of notes!

If you’ve done BLAW10001 Principles of Business Law before, the first half of the course should be relatively familiar, which touch on topics like misleading conduct, and consumer guarantees. Even without the prior knowledge, these topics are quite straight forward if you understand how to apply legislation to facts.

The second half is more confusing… Competition Law focuses on a lot of economic principles, and if you’re not from a commerce background it makes it worse. Rhonda does run through economics 101 (those who know it are literally told they can have a break lol) and there are a lot of readings available on the LMS to help.

Tutorials help immensely so definitely attend those if you are having trouble with the content. I also suggest emailing Arlen if you don’t understand market definition because it links in with the rest of the course. 

Assignment: 2000 word partner assignment; you can pick whoever you want to partner with. It’s a relatively straightforward assignment that covers the consumer law content. Its difficult in that you don’t learn the required material until a week before its due, and you do need to think a lot about what the question wants. The best tip I can give is to focus on how the question is worded and what topic its asking you to respond on. Also try to write succinctly, the word limit is constraining.

Tutorials: These were really important in consolidating the content, and Arlen gives great tips to help. Arlen gives an answer structure in an early tutorial, then for the rest just goes through the important points. I found he often missed important points, so make sure you speak up in tutes and ask whether what you thought was relevant or not. Or send him an email afterwards.

Exam: For our exam, it was 2hrs writing time, 30mins reading time. Question 1 (hypothetical) was compulsory, then you could pick between doing Question 2 (another hypothetical) or 3 (pick 3 out of 6 essay-type questions). You get introduced to both types of questions in tutes. For hypotheticals, you are asked to apply law to the given facts. For essay questions, you are asked to discuss a statement which requires more theory-based content (economic concepts, etc).

There was one practice exam which we went through together during the last lecture, and was a good indication of the difficulty of the exam. There is also a revision session a few days before the exam where Arlen takes questions. Make sure you come ready with questions! Arlen dismisses everyone after no one answers his call for questions.

To prepare for the exam, I suggest writing out answers to the practice exam and then compare them to Arlen’s answers, making sure you’ve addressed all the points Arlen made. If you have time, also do this for the tute work. Further, make a one page summary (as Arlen suggests) of all the topics. I found it super helpful during reading time.

Overall: This is a great subject to do if you have enjoyed other law subjects such as BLAW10001 Principles of Business Law. It is structured well and you can really show your knowledge and effort (which is definitely reflected in your marks).

sheepgomoo

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #467 on: June 29, 2015, 12:52:12 pm »
+5
Subject Code/Name: BLAW30003 Taxation Law II

Workload:  1x2hr Lecture, 1x1hr Tute

Assessment:  30% 2000 word Individual Assignment, 70% 2hr+30mins Open Book Final Exam

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with no screen capture.

Past exams available:  Yes, 1 exam, but not very relevant as a new lecturer is taking the subject.

Textbook Recommendation: Principles of Taxation Law (from Tax Law I)

Lecturer(s): Daniel Minutello 

Year & Semester of completion: 2015 Sem 1

Rating: 4 Out of 5

Comments:

Content: This subject is an extension of the Tax Law I subject, building on previously learnt concepts like income (services, business, passive), deductions and capital gains tax. Don’t worry if you don’t remember much; Daniel definitely helps refresh your memory and it’s not really directly examinable.

I guess I should state upfront that Sunita is not the lecturer. She is the coordinator, but Daniel takes the lectures (and the tutorials as the cohort is quite small). Honestly, his first few lectures weren’t great as he was shy, but he did get better, and his tutorials were quite good (although don’t expect someone like David). You might even remember him as a tutor from Tax I tutes. He does like to draw diagrams up on the board now and then to help understanding, so it’s good to go to lectures.

The content is quite wide ranging, from trusts and superannuation to tax accounting and international taxation. As such, I think Tax II is easier than Tax I, because you really only learn the bare basics of each topic (apart from the first three topics, everything else is one lecture long).

Assignment: 2000 word individual assignment based on the first few topics of company (residency, losses, imputation etc), partnership and trusts. Not a hard assignment, my tips are to include as much detail as you can, and if you get stuck, read the relevant legislation closely, even if Daniel hasn’t gone into the intricate details of a section. For ours, I didn’t think the word limit was that constraining, so write as much as you initially can, and cut down afterwards.

Tutorials: Daniel writes up notes as he goes through the tute work, setting out a good answer template he suggests you use for the exam. Tax II focuses more on income tax /payable/, as opposed to /consequences/, so do be ready to do calculations. Daniel also goes through these well, so tutes are important :P.

If you realise you need help (after getting the assignment back) with legal-writing skills, try sending Daniel some mock question write-ups or go to his consult. He’s quite happy to help out those who are keen.

Exam: The exam is 2hrs writing time, 30mins reading time, and had two hypotheticals examining multiple topics. Thus, be expecting stock in trade, share of trust income, etc combined into one question. International taxation can also pop up anywhere. Knowing where each topic could potentially fit in a question is helpful.

To prepare for the exam, I suggest rewriting out the tute work, and make sure you know what you’re doing with the 30mins planning time. You really need to identify all the issues relevant to the question and set it out in a cohesive format/order.

Overall: If you did well/enjoyed Tax I, you may enjoy Tax II. As with any law subject, comprehensive notes are important, as well as a good understanding of how all the topics link together. You should take this subject if you like tax, law, logical reasoning; and if you want an accredited course in taxation law (Y)!

sheepgomoo

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #468 on: June 29, 2015, 12:53:15 pm »
+7
Subject Code/Name: ACCT30001 Financial Accounting Theory

Workload:  2x1hr Lecture, 1x1hr Tute

Assessment:  30% Mid sem exam, 70% 3hr+15mins Final Exam

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available: Yes, 1 exam, but doesn’t have a full set of questions.

Textbook Recommendation: Financial Accounting Theory (7th ed), Scott. I used this a lot, and it was generally really well structured and consistent with lectures.

Lecturer(s): Matt Pinnuck, Sandip Dhole

Year & Semester of completion: 2015 Sem 1

Rating: 3 Out of 5

Comments:

Content: No debits and credits! …Which means you either love or hate this subject. It focuses on the purpose of financial statements, and how standard setters can choose standards to reduce two forms of information asymmetry: adverse selection (first half of the course) and moral hazard (second half). The nature of the course is that is it highly interwoven, so you are constantly building on your prior knowledge. Knowing the links between topics is what will get you a H1.

Matt takes the first half, and he’s pretty fun to listen to. There is a lottt of content covered, and Matt often doesn’t finish but I think he covers everything well at an overall theory level. For specifics, you’ll have to refer to the book. I was not a fan of Sandip’s lectures – he teaches very basic concepts, but the knowledge he expects is much more specific, so you’re more likely to need the book for his part of the course.

Mid Sem Test: Relatively straightforward questions, with a few annoying questions in that the topic was NEVER mentioned in lectures (reserve recognition accounting)! It was in the specified readings though, so make sure you keep an eye out for this topic =.=

To revise, I found it helpful to draw out a mindmap and link topics together. As I said, the course is pretty much all woven together so these links are quite important. There were a few simple calculation questions, but mostly theory qs. Keep an eye out for theories Matt focuses on like Ball and Brown, Sloan accruals anomaly, etc. There are quite a few hard questions that relate to these, and they can get super specific, so aim to know them inside out :D.

Tutorials: Ugh the worst thing about this is you actually need the new edition of the book because almost all the tute questions you do are new. Matt actually uploaded the questions for us cause most of us didn’t buy the new edition haha but I’m not sure if he’ll do this again in future. In terms of book content, its mainly the same apart from one or two chapters. You could potentially borrow from the library and get away with buying the older edition :P.

In terms of tutors, Danny gives good exam advice (and even releases a few mid-sem questions as /practice/ but which actually showed up on the exam…) and good notes. Kevin/Arnav’s classes are more of a standard tute, but I preferred their tutes because their classes were smaller and you felt more comfortable with asking questions. Don’t know anything about Duncan or Mark.

In terms of pre-tute work, I don’t think it’s very helpful to write up full answers to theory questions, as there will likely be loads of points that you have missed. Its probably best to just dot point the main things you would mention. Even if you don’t, make sure you read the questions before the tute so you know what’s going on! Also make sure you do the calculation questions: more practice = better, and you’ll follow the tute along better.

Exam: From memory there were six full theory questions at the start. These were short, eg. Information asymmetry means you can never have ideal conditions, discuss. Then there were five or six longer questions which had multiple parts, eg. First part was calculations, then theory questions relating to the facts given.

To prepare for the exam, mindmap! Tute work! Textbook review questions! Practice exam! There are some questions that come up over and over again so make sure you know them. From what my tutor said, the best answers are those that flow logically one point to another, which is why a mindmap is important :P

Overall: This may not be the most fun subject, and it does require a little more effort than most subjects to get a good score, but you can really demonstrate your understanding and be adequately rewarded for your effort.

sheepgomoo

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #469 on: June 29, 2015, 01:50:57 pm »
+5
Subject Code/Name: FNCE30007 Derivative Securities

Workload:  1x2hr Lecture, 1x1hr Tute

Assessment:  25% Mid sem exam, 75% 3hr+15mins Final Exam

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available: No, but two sets of practice questions.

Textbook Recommendation: Fundamentals of Futures and Options Markets (PNIE) 8th ed, Hull. I didn’t buy it, don’t know how useful it is. Survived without looking at it once though.

Lecturer(s): Ali Akyol

Year & Semester of completion: 2015 Sem 1

Rating: 3 Out of 5

Comments:

Content: Remember options and futures and forwards from Bus Fi? Those are the focus of this subject. Also toss in a few things like portfolio insurance, dividend yields, etc which are quite similar conceptually to valuing options/forwards.

I’ve heard Ali, who only takes Sem 1, is the better lecturer for the year. His lectures are very overall concept focused and set out clearly. He has quite a few examples chucked in, but its sometimes hard to understand where the numbers come from during the lecture, so utilise the lecture recording afterwards and make sure you know what’s happening.

Mid Sem Test: Average was 17/20. Nuff said? Know the basics. To revise, do the practice questions provided (Ali literally gives you the textbook provided questions+answers), and the previous tute qs which aren’t from the book.

Tutorials: I do think having a good tutor is important for this subject. I had Allen, who is really good for explaining concepts, but I think other tutors may be better if you want solid, write-downable answers for your tute work. It depends on how you learn.

The pretute work is all uploaded at the start of semester, so I suggest printing it out as a book and pulling it out to attempt the pre-tute work. The tutors have all been told to teach us specific ways of answering some questions (profit tables, payoff diagrams etc) that aren’t reflected in the LMS uploaded answers, so its best to go to tutes.

Exam: Seeing how easy the mid sem was, I think everyone was expecting a super hard exam… and that’s exactly what we got. There was a super long question on portfolio insurance (which is different to the one in the practice), and also two hard theory questions, swaps, margin account, arbitrage table, etc.

To prepare for the exam, do the provided textbook questions, and the practice exam questions. Don’t be surprised when you don’t know how to do them – there are lots of questions you haven’t seen before. It sort of makes you realise how much you don’t know, so going to a consult, and abusing the online tutor is a good idea. Its also good to go through the lecture examples as they sometimes don’t appear in tute work, but are examinable.

Overall: DS is often termed the hardest subject of the finance major, and you don’t really realise this until revision time. I guess the thing is to just keep up with the work and make sure you understand the basics, because otherwise you’ll have a lot to learn during revision time. 

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #470 on: June 29, 2015, 06:08:01 pm »
+4
Subject Code/Name: EDUC10057 Wellbeing, Motivation and Performance

Workload:  1 x two hour lecture and 1 x one hour tutorial per week

Assessment: 1500 word midterm assignment (30%), 2500 word final assignment (60%)
(10% is for tutorial participation and attendance, but I don't really know how it works)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes

Past exams available:  N/A

Textbook Recommendation: Positive Psychology: The Science and Happiness of Flourishing, 2nd edition (2013)
(You do not need it, but I do highly recommend it if you want to make the most out of taking the subject - you'll gain a more comprehensive view of the field. I was lucky enough to obtain the textbook from the library for the whole semester)

Lecturer(s): Dr Gavin Slemp, Associate Professor Lindsay Oades
(There were also a number of guest lecturers)

Year & Semester of completion: 2015, Semester 1

Rating:  5/5

Your Mark/Grade: H1 (87)

Comments: This subject has gotten excellent reviews on here so far, and I really wanted to add to them. I can't think of any aspects that could be improved, the subject was very well delivered and well organised.

The subject is based on the new and emerging branch of psychology called positive psychology. This field focuses on utilising scientific methods and intervention techniques to gain understanding of how humans flourish in life! It's so positive, and that really makes the subject enjoyable. Now, I know there are some negative attitudes towards this field of psychology, you might mock it for its blind optimism, for its inability to reflect the true nature of things which consequentially results in positive illusions. Positive psychology is a recent science, so it will have limitations. But nonetheless, it is a comprehensive field, and there's a lot of new emerging studies, so that's exciting. Especially recently, there has been some focus on the importance of negative events and emotions. In fact, I remember the first lecture, that's what the lecturer introduced us to at the start - negative emotions. So, this is a very practical subject, and you will acquire skills that will help you increase your wellbeing, relationships, and overall life satisfaction.

This is an education breadth subject, so it focuses on how knowledge obtained from the field of positive psychology can be applied to our everyday lives. The aim is to promote wellbeing and life satisfaction through the examination of theories, research and published literature. The practicality of this subject did make it much more enjoyable and relatable. Also, there will be a range of disciplines involved, which the lecturers introduce to give further insight, such as philosophy, psychology, sports science, sociology and biology. Referring to the subject name, you will learn about how to promote positive wellbeing, how to cultivate and maintain motivation, and how to increase performance i.e. to flourish in life.

Lectures
Lecturers were engaging and explained concepts and theories well. And no, they're not the bubbly and cheerful lecturers you might imagine you'd get. There is nothing much I can comment on about the lecturers, they were perfect, and so were the guest lecturers. Anyway, the lectures themselves were great. They go for two hours, so there was a lot cover. I recommend going in to the lectures, and not catch up from the recording. I found it was difficult to sit through the recording, and the lectures tend to involve activities and discussion. The coordinators did a very good job at making the lectures fun and stimulating. Lecturers presented quotes and historical figures to base their topic around, and videos to help us understand better. Topics covered in lectures include: positive emotions, neuroplasticity, mindfulness, workplace performance, scientific methods and research, gratitude, resilience, hope, motivation, flow, positive relationships.

Tutorials
Tutorials are similar to the lectures in my opinion. They follow on from the lectures and go into some more depth. However, in tutorials, we had the opportunity to try out some interventions, so it's more hands-on. There were a lot of students in the tutorials, so the discussion was more like a discussion in a lecture rather than an informal classroom one. Tutors were very helpful and insightful.

Assignments
Both assignments were essays. They were very straightforward essays to write, you just need to be adhere to the typical essay structure. Tutors emphasised that many students wrote their midterm essay in a question-answer format, when this is not what is expected. The assignments will ask you to do your own thinking and extended research. It's not much work to be honest, I completed both assignments a couple of days before the due date (this might not work for you though). I enjoyed researching and thinking about the topics because the content was interesting. Both assignments had set questions that we had to cover in our essay. The midterm 1500 word assignment involved a structured essay about positive psychology, so we had to use journal articles to define it and its key features, etc, and an examination of one positive psychology research area which involved analysing the research methods used in studies. The final 2500 word assignment involved a structured essay about our experience implementing a wellbeing building intervention. This was very fun. We just report our experiences using a positive psychology intervention and whether it increased our wellbeing, factors that influenced its effectiveness, etc. The assignments are very chill, and the final assignment is done well before exam period - so that's one subject you won't need to worry about during the exam period!
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Jzyh

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #471 on: June 30, 2015, 10:11:21 pm »
+6
Subject Code/Name: HIST20060 Total War: World War II

Workload:  1 x 1.5hr lecture and 1 x 1hr tutorial each week (In week one, there was an online survey instead of a tutorial class)

Assessment:  2000 word essay due during the middle of semester - worth 50%; 2 hour sit in examination - worth 50%. Additionally there is a hurdle requirement of a minimum threshold of 75% tutorial attendance - including the week one online survey.

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available:  No

Textbook Recommendation:  Essential: Total War Subject Reader (Note: the subject reader was also available free on the LMS)
                                                Recommended: World War II. A New History by Evan Mawdsley

Lecturer(s): Steven Welch

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2015

Rating:  4.5 out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: H1

Comments: I took this subject as a breadth and I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed it. That said, I was very interested in the topic matter of the subject and already had a fair amount of background knowledge about World War 2 prior to taking this subject.

The lectures were delivered in the chronological order of the war and were pretty straightforward. Tutorials discussed the weekly subject reader readings (both primary and secondary source documents about the war and its nature). Additionally, there were optional tutorials run by students who had previously taken this subject known as PASS (peer assisted study sessions). I attended several of these sessions and found them to be pretty helpful, especially when it came to examination preparation. Although it is possible to do well without attending PASS, I would recommend attendance to these sessions as it allows for extra time to discuss matters that were missed during the weekly tutorials.

The mid semester assessment was a speech analysis that was handed in electronically. It required a fair bit of research along with some deep analysis of the selected speech. It also requires an understanding of the idea of Total War and its application.

The examination was 25% multiple choice, 25% short essay and 50% long essay in a 2 hour span. The multiple choice was on various facts of world war 2, and a list of important words was given to students around week 10 - 11 to allow us to prepare for this. The short essay required us to analyze a short primary source document from a selection of several source documents. The documents were selected from the subject reader. The long essay required us to write an essay expressing their own opinion and providing evidence towards a certain question/topic about world war 2. A list of essay questions/topics were also handed to us well in advance of the examination, however only a select few actually appeared on the examination.

I would like to stress that this is no pushover subject. To do well, it is essential that you read the subject reader, and thus get the most out of tutorials. The reader was also invaluable for examination preparation - in particular, the short and long essay. I also highly recommend that you read Total War II: A New History. Although, lectures do indeed cover most of what you need to know about World War II, the multiple choice section of the final examination may encompass information that can only be found via reading Total War II: A New History.

nino quincampoix

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #472 on: July 02, 2015, 12:03:04 pm »
+5
Subject Code/Name:  ANAT30007 Human Locomotor Systems

Workload:  36 x 1 hour lecture, 10 x 3 hour practical

Assessment:  2 x MST (10% each), 2 x 2 hour exam (40% each)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  No past papers

Textbook Recommendation:  Clinically Oriented Anatomy

Lecturer(s):  V. Pilbrow, C. Briggs, J. Hayes, P. Kitchener

Year & Semester of completion:  2015 Semester 1

Rating:  4.5 out of 5

Your Mark/Grade:  H1

Comments:

This subject covers the anatomy (and neuroanatomy in some detail) of locomotion. That is, how one locomotes, coordinates and adjusts movement, and how movement has developed across species to give human locomotion (read evolutionary anatomy). This also means that one is expected to know the musculoskeletal and neurovascular structures that afford humans the ability to locomote. Beyond locomotion, this subject delves into the clinical aspects that revolve around the aforesaid anatomy. For instance, how does a fall result in a particular type of fracture, which structures are likely to be endangered, what are the consequences of such structures being compressed/disturbed, and how is the fracture likely to be repaired surgically. The last point about surgical repair, while beyond the scope of the course per se, is covered by external lecturers and is examinable nevertheless (NB that general understanding is emphasised).

Dissections are arguably the best aspect of this subject. Each week, there is a dissection of a particular compartment of the body pertaining to the lecture material covered in the same and immediately preceding weeks. The demonstrators were for the most part very pleasant to deal with and very helpful. These classes, while three hours in duration, are split between dissection and examination of prosections. The weekly class culminates in a flag race.

Two short tests during the semester: One mostly on the upper limb and spine; The other mostly on the lower limb. They consist of multiple choice questions, none of which were unfair nor too hard. Time is a plenty during these tests.
  • ANAT30007 MST 1 - 20.75 (mean); 21 (median)
  • ANAT30007 MST 2 - 22.56 (mean); 23 (median)
Two fun exams at the end of semester: A theory one that focuses on an understanding of the musculoskeletal mechanics involved in locomotion and of the importance of neurovascular structures and their relation to locomotor mechanics; A practical one (in lieu of ongoing practical assessment that I suspect would have historically been conducted during dissection classes). The theory exam has multiple choice questions (simple and extended), short answer questions, and extended response questions. The practical exam consists of photographs of dissections and has multiple choice questions that largely pertain to identifying the functional and/or clinical significance of highlighted structures.

I enjoyed this subject, but thought that I would enjoy it more that I did. I would prefer that the Anatomy Department allow us to see our tests after marking is complete, but understand their reasons against doing so. Overall, there is quite a significant amount of memory work involved, but it is worth it because no other subject gives undergraduate students such a good footing for further studies in biomedical sciences, especially with respect to the dissection component of the subject.
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nino quincampoix

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #473 on: July 02, 2015, 12:41:23 pm »
+3
Subject Code/Name:  NEUR30002 Neurophysiology: Neurons and Circuits

Workload:  36 x 1 hour lecture

Assessment:  2 x MST (25% each), 1 x 2 hour exam (50%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  No past papers

Textbook Recommendation:  Neuroscience

Lecturer(s):  A. Allen, J. Bornstein, G. Barrett, A. Turnley, J. Furness, C. Parish

Year & Semester of completion:  2015 Semester 1

Rating:  5 out of 5

Your Mark/Grade:  H1

Comments:

From ion channel biochemistry to the clinical consequences of spinal cord injury, this subject covers not only the essential aspects of neurophysiology, but thanks to Andrew Allen, goes above and beyond to include the current research in the field as well. I went into the subject expecting that it would be dull and uninteresting. But I am glad to say that I was abundantly wrong. In fact, it turned out to be my favourite subject this semester (second favourite in my degree).

The lecturers were all very interesting to listen to; I especially enjoyed the "focus on disease" lectures, in which the lecturer discussed the neurophysiology and how it can be implicated in a disease or disease process and hopefully how medicine is aiming to ameliorate the symptoms arising from the disease. I found them to be fascinating given that these lectures were also reliant on current and ongoing research and clinical trials. Graham's series of lectures on memory were excellent and were also a fantastic way to end the semester. Topics covered include ion conductance, ion channel structure and function, neuromodulation, neurotransmission, neuronal circuits (autonomic reflexes), enteric nervous system, memory, and injury to and repair of the nervous system.

The first MST was not too hard. In saying that, it was, however, appreciably easy to make careless errors on the test. The second was fairly easy (and I daresay a little too easy). Either way, both tests were very fair, but time is more of a constraint in these tests compared to other subjects that I have taken. Given that the order of lecture content moved around a little between 2014 and 2015, unfortuantely I cannot accurately advise what will be covered in each test.

The exam was all multiple choice with simple and extended question types. Even though no practice exams were given, I do not think that would have been necessary anyway. This subject emphasises understanding the neurophysiology and applying it. Hence, understand the key concepts and the rest is pretty straightforward. There were no real surprises on the exam, which was a very nice surprise!

I highly recommend this subject. The content covered has great utility not only in the field of neuroscience, but is also somewhat pertinent to critical thinking, which is an added bonus. Hats off to Andrew Allen for taking us beyond textbook science, because this subject definitely benefits from it. So, if you want to know about how the baroreceptor reflex works in detail, or how the hippocampus converts short-term memory to long-term memory, take this subject. It is also worth noting that NEUR30002 has about 30% overlap with NEUR30003, which is certainly helpful during exam time.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2017, 08:00:46 am by nino quincampoix »
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nino quincampoix

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #474 on: July 02, 2015, 01:15:47 pm »
+3
Subject Code/Name:  GENE20001 Principles of Genetics

Workload:  36 x 1 hour lecture, 10 x 1 hour tutorial

Assessment:  3 x MST (10% each), 1 x 2 hour exam (70%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  1998-2013

Textbook Recommendation:  I did read parts of the textbook, but found it useless

Lecturer(s):  A. Andrianopoulos, R. Lee, P. Batterham, C. Cobbett, H. Bugeja

Year & Semester of completion:  2015 Semester 1

Rating:  3.5 out of 5

Your Mark/Grade:  H1

Comments:

Please refer to either (or all of) Mr. T-Rav's, Shenz0r's, or Stick's reviews for this subject. I do not wish to quadruplicate the same information.

The good: The tutorials were the highlight of the subject. The subject tutor, Steve, was fantastic to consult, and he was very approachable. I found his discussions very much integral to my learning, especially with respect to the more difficult concepts that Ronald discusses in his lectures. I found phage to be interesting even though I did not think that I would. Kudos to Alex - he made what could have been a very boring three-ish weeks thoroughly engaging. Also, Ronald was especially kind with helping me via email; thanks to his generosity with his time, I finally was able to comprehend translocations and inversion heterozygotes!

The bad: Despite Phil giving us a sheet of derivations for the formulae used for population genetics, I cannot say that I was impressed with this "teaching style." I would have preferred to learn where the equations come from and why they are relevant. Physics does a wonderful job of presenting an equation and explaining why it is used and this leads to a deeper and more robust understanding.

The ugly: Dragons. There is a reason why they don't exist! Also...8 mark multiple choice questions are abhorrent. Especially when you spend almost thirty minutes on it in the exam only to find out that most people had to guess what the answer might have been.

I would only recommend this subject if you want to know more about genetics. I took this subject because I thought it would have less of a dependence on ROTE learning, which is true, but did not enjoy it all that much. In a word: Genetics simply isn't my niche.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2015, 01:53:15 pm by nino quincampoix »
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nino quincampoix

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #475 on: July 03, 2015, 04:25:12 pm »
+4
Subject Code/Name:  NEUR30003 Principles of Neuroscience

Workload:  36 x 1 hour lecture

Assessment:  1 x MST (30%), 1 x 2 hour exam (70%)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture

Past exams available:  No past papers

Textbook Recommendation:  Neuroscience

Lecturer(s):  P. Kitchener, C. Anderson, J. Bornstein, E. Fletcher, L. Rivera, A. Allen

Year & Semester of completion:  2015 Semester 1

Rating:  4.5 out of 5

Your Mark/Grade:  H1

Comments:

First off, I will say that this subject can really be split into two parts: The first concerns mostly what we do know as a scientific collective; The second moves into territory that really pushes the envelope. I think it is important to keep this in mind if you take the subject because for a "science" subject, the content in the later lectures is rather abstract (and maybe even a bit philosophical).

The first six weeks of lectures covers the fundamentals of neuroanatomy, neurological development and injury to the nervous system, sensory systems (similar content to NEUR30002), and the autonomic nervous system. Naturally, these topics lend themselves better to the style of learning emphasised in the course in that it is easy to see where a test question may come from. For instance, knowing a sensory transduction pathway and how a ligand interacting with a receptor is converted into a meaningful receptor/graded/action potential is something that one could possibly anticipate being on a test. Moreover, the weekly study group questions pertaining to this section of the course are fairly easy to answer given that the answer will no doubt lie somewhere in the lecture notes.

The second six weeks is a bit of a departure from the first six, and anecdotally, I found that most (not all) of the people who I knew preferred the content of the first half of lecture series. That said, topics such as consciousness, pain, fear, memory, etc., all pop up in this part of the course, and personally I found these to be really quite intriguing. Despite being less concrete, I would say that Peter (the subject coordinator) handles the lectures very well and they are genuinely interesting to listen to. Again, there are study group questions that the lecturers provide and these shall give an indication of what can be expected in the way of formal assessment.

The midsemester test was very fair in terms of both time and the wording of the questions. It covered the first half of the course, but given that the order of lectures changed between 2014 and 2015, I cannot accurately give an indication of what might appear on the test. What I will say, however, is that I had the feeling that the test would be accessible if one makes the effort to answer the study group questions without referring to the lecture notes.
  • NEUR30003 MST 1 (out of 35) - 23.27 (mean); 24 (median)
I thought that the exam was incredibly fair, and possibly the easiest of my exams for this semester. That is not to say that the exam is easy, though. While it was all multiple choice, it consisted of a few question types: Some simple (A, B, C, D), some extended (A, B, ..., Z), and some slightly different. The emphasis was on the second half of the lecture series. Reviewing notes and asking peers questions is probably a good way to prepare for this exam.

Thanks to Peter, this subject was a pleasure to be enrolled in; I enjoyed the lectures since they were fascinating, I found the lecturers to be engaging, and am of the opinion that the testing was transparent and equitable.
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e^1

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #476 on: July 03, 2015, 08:38:23 pm »
+7
Subject Code/Name: COMP20007 Design of Algorithms

Workload:  2 x 1-hour lectures and 1 x 2-hour workshop, per week

Assessment:
  • 10% Assignment 1
  • 20% Assignment 2
  • 10% Mid semester test (<1 hour)
  • 60% End of semester exam (3 hours)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes.

Past exams available:  Yes.
  • 2013/2014 mid-semester test and final exam, all with solutions.
  • 2013 also contained a sample mid-semester and exam paper, both with solutions
  • Some irrelevant content in 2013 exam, compared to this semester's content.

Textbook Recommendation:  Algorithms (by Dasgupta et al.)

Lecturer(s): Andrew Turpin

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2015

Rating: 3.75-4.0 out of 5.0

Your Mark/Grade: H1

Comments:
Overview:
As the subject title says, you learn a bunch of algorithms. This includes sorting, graph, compression-related, and a bit of string-searching algorithms. You will also get a glimpse of programming approaches, including greedy algorithms and dynamic programming. Some algorithms are mind-boggling, and interesting. I found it to be a bit all over the place because of so many algorithms to learn, but this was not necessarily a bad thing.

For the first few weeks, you revise on what you've learned from first year. This included quicksort, mergesort, Big-O notation and recursive equations. Not many new things here, but you will need it for your mid-semester test. You will also go through binary search trees (BST), and a similar data structure called AVL trees at some point in the semester. Besides this, you will also learn new data structures, including disjoint-set data structure and hashing.

From there, you learn graph algorithms (a graph meaning vertices possibly connected by edges). Finding the shortest path from A to B (eg. Dijkstra's algorithm), finding the lowest number edge cost so that the edges cover all of the vertices (Prims and Kruskal's algorithm), and finding strongly connected components in a graph are a couple of things you get to learn. These seem quite practical and useful to know, so no complaints here. As an aside, I believe there was a topic that is specially covered for this year. In 2013 Euler paths were covered; this year it was about (unicost) set cover. Hence there were some irrelevant  content in 2013's exams, but I think that was about it.

In learning compression algorithms, you learn techniques to encode text in order to make files smaller, for instance. These included the Shannon-Fano coding, arithmetic coding, and Huffman coding. One of the more 'mind-boggling' methods that I found were Wavelet trees and Burrow Wheel transforms. We also touched a bit on string searching algorithms, but not much on the Knuth-Morris-Pratt algorithm for instance.

Lastly, you learn dynamic programming and a bit about NP and NP-complete problems. Dynamic programming involves trying to solve a problem in polynomial time through splitting into sub-problems, and solving the sub-problems without solving the same one again. Otherwise, the idea of NP involves finding out whether a problem can be verified in polynomial time, but cannot be solved in polynomial time. We touched on this a little bit, but it was in our exam.

Aside from this, you will also learn how to do strong induction and see a bit of proof. However, it did not seem that we had to understand why a method like Wavelet Trees worked; the applying bit is more important (for those bitter in math and proofs).


Lectures and workshops:
You've probably met Andrew in COMP10001 before. He's quite friendly, explains concepts well and gets straight to the point, and his slides were easy to understand. I feel quite bad for him with the criticisms he gets from the bad structure in the assessments he gives. I found him more likeable than Alistair from COMP10002, who seemed more obscure to me despite his humor.

The accompanied book by Dasgupta also helps, and has questions probably harder than the exam. It is worth reading the relevant content in the book, since it does give more detail than Andrew's slides. Otherwise, you can also find a draft of Dasgupta's book somewhere online for free, which some people on the internet have commented that it has less typos than the physical copy of the book. However, I believe the physical copy also contains a code to obtain an online solution manual for the book, which I did not buy.

I did not attend most of the workshops, but for the first few I did attend, one hour was devoted to the tutorial questions, and one hour for a programming exercise. The questions were somewhat tough, so doing questions from the book would help. The programming exercises were easier, and were more of a way to strengthen your basic understanding of the concepts learned. Partial solutions to the workshops were given later, which would be quite helpful in exam revision.


Assessments:
For us, assignment 1 (10% of marks) involved creating an explicit stack data structure to be implemented in both quicksort and mergesort algorithms. Bonus marks also provided interesting tasks, including merging (not dividing!) with space and only using a word for a stack frame in some cases. This was more of a C programming exercise (and stuff you learned from first year)  than anything else. In general, I felt the assessment was clear in what we had to do, although the bonus mark tasks were a bit confusing. We also had to do some Praze feedback after the assignment.

The second assignment was more free in what we could do. A somewhat generic set cover problem, it involved finding the minimum amount of schools such that the schools covered all of the towns, where each school covered 1km in radius. There was quite a bit to do in this assignment, which involved creating a binary min/max heap, some structure to manipulate sets (union, intersection, exclusion etc), a graph data structure and some algorithm for set cover. Fortunately, the workshops gave time to work on some of these needed data structures. Accounting for 20% of marks, cramming it was definitely a bad idea. Nonetheless, I had fun working on it, particularly on implementing an algorithm from a paper, which was a variant on the typical greedy set cover approach.

I found the mid-semester test (10%, in week 7) to be quite fair. If you have done consistent study and practice (not me, of course) throughout the semester then you should have little to no problem with it. Most of the questions were basic and just wanted to see whether you have understood it or not, while the last question was more difficult. Later we were able to get our tests back with solutions.

The exam questions from 2013 and 2014 were easier, compared to Dasgupta's exercises. Going over workshops, strengthening the understanding of concepts, understanding lectures and doing exam questions were helpful for preparation. This years exam seemed consistent in difficulty, so no shocks there. With 3 hours to finish the exam, I found it to be enough to complete most of the questions. Once more, if you were studying steadily and got your sleep, then you would have probably finished it in less than 3 hours confidently :').

In general, I found the assessments to be fair and in some way, enjoyable. It is worth remembering the algorithms after the subject also, since many of them have its practical uses. Particularly, having access to workshops, mid-semester tests and exams (and solutions) helps.


Resources:
Since the lecture slides and the book were very useful in understanding stuff, I did not really use much resources besides these. However, here are a few (the last link is if you are doing set cover ONLY, and requires you to understand proofs):

URL?Topic:
l:m/epp.e7xtroic/tu/thy5wnWavelet Trees
nl:mc/ph/ii..tapmct/tmedreoh/ictpiaersieth    Arithmetic Coding
l:m/dwp.o5trvoi/ctu/thy3lnHuffman coding
o:l/tU0p/7./4gogtAthSet Cover

The decoding is left for you to find these links.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2015, 01:50:45 am by e^1 »

Rod

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #477 on: July 04, 2015, 06:09:54 pm »
+7
Subject Code/Name: UNIB10006 Critical Thinking With Data 

Workload: Weekly: 3 x 1 hour lecture, 1 x 1 hour tutorial. (48 contact hours).

Assessment:

*3 written ‘’short’’ assignments (strict 200 word limit for each, assignments worth 5% each)

*3 online short assignments (60 minute time limit, single attempt, 5% each)

*Group work poster for major assignment, including a 4 minute presentation to two examiners + the class (worth 10%)

*Major assignment individual paper (worth 15%, strictly 1200 words)

*10 Weekly quizzes, each worth 0.5%, weekly quizzes can be attempted 3 times in total, no time limit. Quizzes account for 5% of your total mark.

*2 hour and 15 minute examination worth 40%. Made up of 10 multiple choice, and 10 short answers, 100 marks in total.

... In short, there is A LOT of assessment.

Lectopia enabled: Yes, with screen capture. All lectures are recorded, tutorials not recorded.

Past exams available: Yes! About eight past exams available, with detailed solutions. Past exams were extremely helpful.

Textbook recommendation: None.

Lecturer(s):

Dr. Sandy Clarke takes all of the core lectures (there are 29 of them). ‘Core’ lectures, meaning the content presented in these lectures will be in your final exam.

The other 7 lectures were ‘’guest lectures’’. These lectures were more important for the assignments. If I recall correctly, there was only ONE multiple choice in the exam that required knowledge from guest lectures, so you really only need them for the assignments.

Guest lecturers include; Dr. Julia Simpson, Dr. David Dickson, Dr. Bonnie Wintle, Dr. Meghan Wilson-Anastasios.

Year and semester of completion: 2015, Semester 1

Rating: 4/5

Your grade: H1

Comments:

What is good about this subject?

*The core lecturer, Sandy Clarke, is AMAAAAAZING. She was probably one of the best lecturers I had throughout semester 1. Not only does she make the content seem really interesting and communicate it in a clear way, but she makes classes extremely interactive and fun. She uses polls, videos and very engaging case studies to present her material. Her lecture notes are very detailed and are enough to do well in the exam.

She is a very nice person and very approachable. She has three ‘’help classes’’ a week where people can approach her for 1 to 1 lessons. I did not go to any of them, but what I found so helpful was emailing her. I really needed help during swot-vac with some exam questions and topics, and she would reply to me within 24 hours. Her replies would be long, well written and extremely detailed. Not just shitty one-word responses which I got from some of my other subjects. Sandy is ultimately really dedicated and one of those lecturers who actually cares about her students and want her students to do well. She was simply awesome, made the subject so much easier for me.

*You do not need any background in statistics to do this subject. The main gains from this subject are to gain really good background knowledge on basic statistics.

Another outcome of this subject is that it allows you to be ‘’critical users of data-based evidence’’. After completing this subject, Sandy promised us we would be able to distinguish what is good data and what is bad data. And nowadays when I ready the newspaper, I am able to distinguish whether the journalist is using reliable and good sources of data or whether they are using very unreliable data. I can understand more complex uses of statistics in newspapers (eg confidence intervals, P-values, meta-analysis).

Other outcomes of this subject include understanding the principles of collecting data, how to think about and describe uncertainty in data, how to draw YOUR OWN conclusions from data and not just accept what the author is saying, and how to critically assess media reports based on quantitive data. So as you can see, this isn’t just a ‘’bludge’’ breadth, you learn lots of things are interesting and may be helpful to you throughout life/your course. 

*The exam was accessible. If you work hard throughout the semester and do about 3-4 past exams you should be able to get a H1 in the exam. It was fair, nothing surprising.

What is bad about this subject?

*The assignments are so HARSHLY marked. The tutor I had literally had such BIG expectations of us, I started out with a near fail (5.9/10) and after realizing how big of an effort you needed to put into these assignments, I was able to later on get better marks. But it should not be this way. It felt as if my tutor felt that we all wanted to be future statisticians, and therefore we needed to get ALL the basics absolutely PERFECT. Any little error, marks off. My tutor needed to realize that this is a breadth subject, everyone in our classes just wanted a basic/background understanding of statistics. Every week my tutor would come to class grumpy ‘’your assignments were not good at all’’, so it wasn’t just me that was finding the assignments really hard, but everyone.

*Felt as if there was too much assessment. Six short assignments, two big assignments, ten quizzes and an exam just felt too much for me. The workload for this subject felt more demanding than some of my other subjects like geography and biology.

Overall:

If you are looking for a breadth that is interesting, very well coordinated, and will be valuable to your education and future, do CTWD. If you are looking for that chilled breadth with very small contact hours and small workload this subject is probably not for you.

Apart from those written assignments, CTWD gives you all the resources you need to do well; several past exams, great lecture notes, constant revision through the weekly quizzes and an awesome lecturer. So if you put the effort in and use all these resources you should be able to score highly.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2017, 01:51:01 am by Rod »
2013-2014:| VCE
2015-2018:| Bachelor of Science (Neuroscience) @ UoM
2019-X:| Doctor of Dental Surgery (discontinued)
2019 -2021:| Master of Physiotherapy

Paulrus

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #478 on: July 04, 2015, 10:43:12 pm »
+4
Subject Code/Name: PSYC10003 - Mind Brain and Behaviour 1

Workload: 3 x 1 hour lectures, 1 x 2 hour tutorial

Assessment: 2000 word essay worth 40%, multiple choice exam consisting of 120 questions worth 60%

Lectopia Enabled:  Yes, with screen capture.

Past exams available:  No, but there are practice questions for each section on the LMS. Simon gives you the questions for his section of the exam in advance as well.

Textbook Recommendation:  Don't bother buying anything, the lecture notes cover everything in good detail.

Lecturer(s): Jason Forte, Simon Cropper, Stefan Bode.

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2015

Rating: 3.5 Out of 5

Your Mark/Grade: H1 (86)

Comments:

Assessment:
The assessment was split into a 2000 word essay worth 40% of the total mark, and a 3 hour exam worth 60%, consisting of 120 multiple choice questions.

The essay is divided into two sections. The first asks you to watch a sunset and then document how your perception of the world around you changes as the sun goes down. The assignment sounds ridiculous, but once you grasp what they expect from you it becomes fairly easy. There'll be a tutorial class dedicated to sharing ideas about this section of the assignment, so even if you can't come up with any ideas yourself you can leech ideas off others. The second section changes from year to year, but the idea behind it is essentially the same. You'll have to go to some kind of art exhibit (this year's was at the NGV, last year's was at ACMI), and then comment on the way the pieces play with your sense of perception. The assignment is quite easy to do well in, with a lot of people scoring around the H2A/H1 range, so don't worry too much about it.

This exam is pretty chill - 120 questions, with 30 questions from each section. You have 3 hours to complete it, but you shouldn't need anywhere near that long. Jason's section is quite difficult, as is Simon's if you haven't prepared properly, but the others are simple enough. Overall, the exam is pretty fair.

Topics
Behavioural Neuroscience - Jason Forte: This topic explored the structure and function of different parts of the nervous systems and how they influence behaviour. Coming from an non-science background, it was was actually pretty daunting at first. This is by far the most 'science-heavy' part of the course, and I've heard a lot of students drop the subject quite early because of this section. For the most part, though, if you look over the notes and pay attention in the lectures you shouldn't have too much trouble understanding them. Jason's notes are incredibly detailed and explain everything well, but I wouldn't miss these lectures if you can avoid it. This section was interesting, but unfortunately required a fair bit of rote-learning to remember all the densely packed information in the notes. Jason can and will test you on almost anything from the lectures, so be warned.

Sensation and Perception - Simon Cropper: Simon's section explored how the various sensory systems of our body (particularly the visual system) construct our own perception of the world around us. This is a section that a lot of people had major issues with. Simon teaches this topic in a way that I can only describe as 'abstract', with the result that many of us left each lecture having no idea what we were supposed to have learned in the past hour. This wasn't just due to me not paying attention (although it was definitely easy to drift off) - everyone I spoke to was equally confused by Simon's lectures. It's a blessing that Simon gives you the questions in advance and that suggested solutions are available on the internet - honestly, I suspect he gives them out because everyone would fail his section otherwise. He's a nice enough guy, but the way he teaches the topic just isn't effective. I would have given this subject a higher rating if not for this section.

Learning and Cognition - Stefan Bode: This part is basically classic psychology, covering a bunch of different theories on memory and learning. This was my absolute favourite section. If you've done VCE psychology you'll be set for about 80% of this topic, but you're not at a huge disadvantage if you haven't, because most of the information is pretty straightforward. Stefan was an incredible lecturer and taught each area extremely well. He was also hilarious and hurled chocolates at us in the last lecture. I love Stefan. What a beautiful German man.

Quantitative Methods: This section is only covered in tutorials, but makes up a quarter of the exam. It covers basic statistics and is probably the easiest part of the course. Obviously, how well this section is taught will depend on your tutor, but it's all pretty straightforward anyway.

Overall, Mind Brain and Behaviour 1 was definitely an interesting subject and the lecturers were, for the most part, pretty great. This subject is a prerequisite for anyone wanting to study Psychology, of course, but it's a broad enough subject that anyone could enjoy studying it. I would have given it a higher rating if not for Simon's section, but either way, it's definitely a solid subject and I'd recommend it to any first years unsure of what to pick.
2015-2017: Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) at University of Melbourne.

honestreviews

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Re: University of Melbourne - Subject Reviews & Ratings
« Reply #479 on: July 05, 2015, 03:22:48 pm »
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Subject Code/Name: FNCE10001 Finance 1

Workload: 2 x 1 hour lectures + 1 x 1 hour tute

Assessment:  Two assignments (10% + 10%), end of semester exam (80%) (ugh)

Lectopia Enabled:  Yep

Past exams available:  Yes, plenty. They only provide one with solutions, and the rest you searched up online

Textbook Recommendation:  Financial Instiutitons and Markets (B Hunt and C Terry) 6th edition - did not buy it, and the only time I read it was during swotvac when my much more academically adept boyfriend lent me his copy to let me peruse it for a few days

Lecturer(s): Les Coleman and Zhuo (Joe) Zhong

Year & Semester of completion: Semester 1, 2015

Rating: 1.5/5

Your Mark/Grade: 87 (H1)

Comments:
TL;DR I HAVE SORT OF STRONG OPINIONS ABOUT THIS SUBJECT

This subject is extremely dry. Like vaporised dust. It is rote learning at its finest. My life advice to you is that you DO NOT DO IT unless you're considering a finance major or you're slightly masochistic and/or a ~mathematically inclined person~ (read exam section) and/or you enjoy rote learning and/or want an easy subject to pass/ace.

Lectures:
Hella boring. I barely touched the lectures until swotvac. I stopped attending after week 2  as I found them to be pretty useless. I feel as if Les just reads off his slides a bit, and I bothered to actually watch the recorded lectures up until about the third week and then I ignored lectures altogether. From week 7 (I think?) onwards, Joe started lecturing. I heard his lectures were a lot more interesting (lectured like he actually wanted to be there and enjoyed finance), but I never really turned up and I listened to about one lecture about the bond market so I could do assignment two, so go figure.
 
Tutes:
They were okay, I guess. I sort of mainly went just to copy down the answers, but then they released the answers to all the tute questions so I lost all motivation to turn up. Tute questions are very good revision for the exams BECAUSE YAY SOLUTIONS!! I was never up to date in finance so the tutes weren't very useful to me, but I reckon if you're on task the tutes will probably be pretty helpful.
 
Assignments:
The assignments are okay to do if you put in a decent amount of effort for something like one to three days.* The first assignment was super open ended and basically asked how you'd advise your friend on investing 30k. It’s unreasonable as it was due in like week 5/6, because up to this point you have covered nothing semi-relevant. I also found the marking to be extremely varied between tutors for the first assignment, especially as it IS such an open ended topic. The second one was concerning the issuance of Apple bonds in Switzerland which was a much narrower topic and easily made a lot more sense.

AN IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT FNCE10001 IN GENERAL: breadth over depth in this subject. Finance 1 is one long, arduous memorisation task where you're expected to swallow great quantities of information which you haven't truly computed or understood, but spitting it back out onto the exam paper at the end of the semester will be enough to warrant you a H1.**
 
Exam:
The exam is hurdle, but I really wouldn't worry about that too much. About half the marks on the exam are dedicated to 'financial mathematics' (on a formula sheet ALREADY PROVIDED - it seems to me as if the hardest part of financial mathematics IS RECOGNISING FORMULAS) whereby you just plug in numbers from questions into formulas. If you have attained an extremely impressive primary school level of mathematical ability, you'll pass the subject.
 
That being said, despite my mind crying in protest at this subject which was(/probably still will be) the spirit of sheer boredom incarnated (rote learning subjects are to me as Kryptonite is to Superman) I'm scoring it 1.5/5 for three reasons:
   1) one, its boringness (as I said, akin to vaporised dust) isn't really the department of finance's fault. Foundational basics are eye-rolling boring, but a necessary evil
   2) Because of how easily crammable it is. Like I said, I barely touched lectures till swotvac. I didn't even watch them during swotvac, I just read them. You really only have to read lectures to pass this subject. It was my first exam and I had about five and a bit more days to study. I managed to cram all the content in about three days by reading through lecture slides, and did a few practice exams.
   3) 1 sounds too mean, 2 sounds too generous

(PSA for breadth kids: Think doing Finance 1 will help you become an investor? Wrong. Just as taking an intro bio course doesn't make you a doctor, taking Finance 1 doesn't make you Warren Buffett)



* - depends on how quickly you work, 1-2 days was enough for me
** - potentially not true and not guaranteed
« Last Edit: July 05, 2015, 03:52:15 pm by honestreviews »
Just a bunch of bored smartasses who have opinions about their subjects.