When I was a student, my fellow students used to scare me with the mysterious word “session” or “a thousand books and one night” 🙂 When I had to overcome a few of them myself, things didn’t seem as scary as I thought. In order to dispel all my fears, doubts and questions, I decided to dedicate myself to one of my blog posts.
Of course, each school has a different style of teaching, but in my school the school year was divided into two semesters (in others, as I remember, the more common case was 3 trimesters). I no longer remember exactly, but the end of the semester coincided with a change of course. Until then, I had to fully account for past subjects, the average of the semester was kept (after all, my school had a cumulative grade point system, but here’s the trivia). All I forget is that, as the new semester came, we received new textbooks, but basically the change itself was not something special.
Things are different at university, but there are similarities as well. A session is a small period of about a month between the old and the new semester, during which you report on all the things learned during the semester. In-session payments are called exams that you strive to pass during a session, or more simply, to get a positive rating.
There are different types of exams. These are usually:
- Written assessment, when you are answering a variety of questions, writing various “notebooks” or simply taking tests in a spacious classroom with your classmates. By the way, I was often annoyed by the confusion of terms – if a lecturer says that there will be a “test”, that doesn’t mean that it will be a well-known “choice of several options.”
- Oral assessment, when you are usually asked one or two lectures by a lecturer in slightly smaller classrooms, you get one or more questions. Then you get ready for a while and finally tell the teacher everything.
- Billing to a computer when you need to program, draw, or perform something that requires a computer in a computer lab in the short term.
- As I mentioned in previous posts, you will study several modules each semester. While there are rare exceptions, each module will usually have its own exam. The frequency of exams varies widely, but the instructors are understanding people (not like the picture :), so you will probably be able to prepare for each exam for at least a couple or three days.
There is certainly a darker side of the exams, which is a little less talked about, but no less important. I am talking about those cases when a student fails the exam – gets a negative mark. Each session gives the disaster another chance to recover, a so-called overhaul week at the end of the session. I can assure you that if you did a fair grade during the semester and did not write down during the semester (I will be writing about honesty later), you will not need to retake the exam.
Before I speak, another word is worth introducing. Those who fail the exam, either in session or in the week of overtaking, get in debt. This means that the exam will not go away, but will have to be retested next semester. Debt is also unpleasant because you have to pay a solid sum for a module that you did not teach and those with outstanding debt cannot get a diploma. But here too, things are not as bad as it seems – I know a lot of borrowers who have successfully kept all their debts and now work in prestigious firms, with a wide smile remembering their studies 🙂
Well, but about the evils. The exams themselves are not as scary and decisive as they used to be. For example, when I was just starting my studies, there were modules where more than half of the final grade for a module was exam grade. This meant that you had to put your semester’s knowledge in some way and put it in the correct hands for the lecturer, otherwise you would get the debt. Now, most modules often have a cumulative grade system, where semester reports are more frequent (but less material), accumulating a higher percentage of grade on the module. There is very little left to learn in the exam, and even failing it does not break the hope of a positive final mark.
By the way, sometimes a session does not become an ordeal but a real celebration. Suppose I have cases where I was able to pay before the session (some lecturers allow it), pass each other in the first days of the session, and the rest of the time for the holidays! Yes, my last point – if you don’t lose time during the semester, I can assure you that the session will be a real pleasure