My results

Today is the day that students in NUS spend countless hours trying to check their results. This never happened before. This time, it took anyone of us hours before we could retrieve our results, thanks to the NUS team shifting all the websites and centralise it as a system called Isis. To log in to Isis, we have to use the Vpn as Isis is probably an intranet in school. The bottle neck is at the stupid Vpn because it couldn’t handle the thousands of students all checking their results when the clock strikes 9, or 10 for FoE blabla and so on for other faculties.

Anyway I managed to check my results earlier because my friends at SoC had the SoC Vpn, and that wasn’t bottlenecked as the rest of us wouldn’t know how to use the SoC Vpn anyway. But that is not the point. This sem was a disappointment, and I probably expected it already anyway.

EE2001 was a rather confusing module in a way that we were given freedom to choose our topics and make them into reality. I would say that throughout the module, my team was great in terms of implementation. We met major deadlines and our project did not malfunction during the presentation. We also saved the school lots of money by using the full budget allocated to us. Hence I was extremely disappointed to get a B+ for this module, which I had originally wished for it to be an A. I cannot describe how disappointed I am, and I think my team mate Feng Fu was also very disappointed as he came to ask me my grade for EE2001. We put in a lot of effort, even more than I would say 3/4s of the teams there, and we tried our best to debug and implement the entire thing.

EE3408, another B+, was rather expected. I feared getting worse results, so B+ is probably a sigh of relief. I couldn’t grasp the concepts of the design project, and I guess the way the module was carried out wasn’t entirely good. It isn’t easy to understand how to proceed on for the design project, and I couldn’t meet the specifications even when I tried my best. I guess CMOS design isn’t really my cup of tea.

ACC1002X, a B-, was expected. How can you score for a module when your project mates are such assholes? Lazy people that don’t meet deadlines and don’t produce quality work. And a freeloader who don’t do anything. Volunteers for formatting but the end result is such a disaster that you have to do the formatting yourself. You, the one that does most work, got arrowed to bind, print and submit the report. How can anyone score for this kind of shit work? Naturally, I will be converting this B- to an S.

EE2007, an A, was expected. I put in a lot of effort on both the mini project as well as the major project, spending countless hours at home and countless hours on wednesday and friday in school debugging the program and making it look good. At least the effort paid off. I also studied hard for the final paper and although I didn’t understand a question until after the exam (it only contributed 3% of the final marks), I felt that I could sacrifice it and still get a decent grade.

EG2401, an A-, was above expectations. I expected a B+ for such essay modules, but I guess hard work manage to pay off itself. How else do you justify doing all 4 papers and discussing them in depth with friends just to try to get as much points as possible? It being an essay question mean you need to write the essay within the time frame given. Your whole hand gets numb after a while because you wrote too much and there was never a need to write like that for engineering modules.

Lastly GEM2900. I was sick that day. I started leaking (or rather, my nose did) when I went into the hall. I finished my tissue and I had to go to the toilet to get toilet paper to sneeze into. I didn’t expect to do well. I was slow and sluggish and my head couldn’t think fast. I took 2 hrs to finish the paper when I probably needed 1 hour and slightly more. But all is well and I actually got an A+ for it. I guess I am very happy with it because I was expecting to S/U it.

Overall I asked myself, if given more time, could I have done better? I doubt so. I did not score lousily for my paper. The parts that brought me down were the project components. For EE2001 it was unexpected. It is also 6MCs so it is painful. I have no idea why I got a B+. I think I deserve at least an A- for my efforts and standard of work. For EE3408, the whole design project was confusing in the way it was carried out by the department. Could I have done better? I guess not. I couldn’t get the idea on how to design. It seems to be a very trial and error method to meet the specifications. I didn’t really learn much on practical designing from the project.

So whilst I am disappointed, I think I did my best. There was nothing else to fault. And I think many people would kill me for my grades anyway.

Slight disappointment

There’s this slight disappointment that you feel when you don’t get what you aim for. When you’ve been aiming for a certain grade since the beginning of the semester, it doesn’t feel right when you didn’t attain it, although people will probably slap me since my results arn’t bad at all.

If you have been diligently reading my blog, you’ll know I was aiming for a near impossible score of 5.0. It’s like the desire to achieve perfection when it’s most possible. I even got a Singapore Studies module which I had planned to slack and S/U it. Now speaking of this SS module, I’m really stunned.

For my SS lectures, I have been just attending but not really paying attention since the lecturer is really dry. For SS tutorials, I went there, talked nonsense with my friends during discussion, and when in 3 out of 4 of the tutorials, I did not contribute and get the participation marks. Only at the last tutorial when we had a replacement tutor, she made sure everyone contributed. For my assignments, the first assignment which I spent a week on, I got a B+. The second one which I spent one afternoon and evening on, I got a A-. For the exams, I didn’t really study properly since I was expecting that with a B+ and a A-, I can not put in so much effort and easily get a C and S/U. So it came to be an absolute surprise when I got an A. Especially when I had been telling people I’ll confirm S/U it. This is the same as last semester, when I said I’ll s/u marketing and it came out to be the one I didn’t S/U.

But I missed my 5.0 by a bit. The next highest score I can get is a 5.0, so I’m like the 2nd place guy. I wasn’t happy with my EE2012 Analytical Methods, which I had problems with for half the part. I ended up getting A-, and I’m very disappointed in it.

The other 3 modules gave me pleasant surprises. I was expecting A+ for EE2006 Digital Design, A for EE2009 Signals (I prayed) and A for EE2010 System & Control. I ended up getting A+ for all 3 modules, so I was shocked.

Why couldn’t there be a method to downgrade the A+ and pull the A- to an A? Haha.

People are probably cursing me but it’s normal. It’s just jealousy, really. But I must say I really put in a lot of effort, and anyone who wants to can do the same. It’s just the amount of effort you are willing to put in.

Although I was disappointed, I am ultimately glad for my results. My CAP is now at a cool 4.66. This is the first time I actually wrote about my results for the semester, because I couldn’t care less if people want to use that to justify themselves. I don’t care if they call me a mugger, because different people have different priorities and they should respect that. Besides, what’s the point of showing me that you’re jealous?

Anyway the second disappointment was for today’s IPPT. I failed again and I am seriously very disappointed in myself. There’s no reason to blame the fact that I’m a Guardsmen, but because I am a Guardsmen, I am duty bound to achieve that standard. And there’s no excuses for failure. Hopefully the next cycle I would have improved plenty.

I hope everyone have achieved the results that they aimed for. 🙂

End of the first paper

I just had my first paper back at 1pm, and I must say that in this morning, I was feeling really stressed up over the examinations. I have been giving myself a lot of expectations, something I expect to change from next sem onwards. It’s really a personal challenge to myself to get those grades I wish to get once in my life. And I guess from the next semester onwards, I’ll just do my best, but not expect to hit the high grades.

The paper was quite easy, and maybe too easy, I would say. It probably resulted in almost everyone knowing how to do every question, and I fear this scenario, for any minor mistakes would mean you drop behind many people. On the other hand, if that is the case, the only way to distinguish the grades would be the CA portion, of which I hope that I can say that I have done quite well.

This is a great start to the examinations and hopefully I have already secured an A. I also hope that in the coming few examinations, I can do well for all of them and come back blogging happily about the examinations.

Last day for relaxation

I took a break tonight from studying and went to watch Suspect X, which is a Japanese movie that I’ve been wanting to catch in the cinemas for a long time but didn’t have anyone to go watching with me. So it’s a 2 hour plus break, and I really enjoyed myself and I’m quite appreciative of this break that gives me some relaxation time.

I must say the movie was great in my opinion, though it raised heads when I said that on MSN. Well, it’s my opinion and I think it’s much better than the last movie I saw that originated from a Jdrama, that is Kurosagi. Suspect X came from Galileo, and what’s interesting this time is that it’s not so much of using science to solve it, but using logical deduction. It’s more of a duel between two great minds, one to devise the perfect smoke out, one to find out the real truth.

I think it is a real pity that the math genius did so much for a love that didn’t come. But to actually want to commit suicide in the first place, I guess he’s really lost it. This just supports the fact that love is so irrational. Doesn’t make logical sense. Galileo said something inside like “What if the area of a circle is r*r*love? Doesn’t make sense”. Or ax^2+bx+c = love. Cannot solve. I guess in my discipline, love AND love = ?. Haha. Love makes people do such stupid things. That after a certain period of time they realize how irrational they are. Yet people still want it. Doesn’t make sense.

Anyway tomorrow’s the last day of school and the reading week starts on saturday. I only have one more week before the exams kick off. Shall go sleep so I can absorb tomorrow. Bye!

End of the 2nd last week of the semester

My fourth semester at NUS is coming to a close in about a week’s time. This week has already ended since tomorrow is Good Friday, and since it’s a holiday, there won’t be any classes. But it ending means that there is only 2 more weeks to my first examination, and that is really scary.

Somehow I feel that I haven’t been putting enough revision and effort into this semester like the previous one, and it may very well be a stroke of luck that I have had the best mid term results compared to the previous 3 semesters. Somehow I am left wondering if I’m burning out faster as each semester progresses. I didn’t experience any burn out periods in the first year. I got burnt out and fed up during last semester’s reading week, but that is to be expected because I really did put in much effort in revising. But this sem, I’m starting to just feel like not doing so much. I know it’s wrong but it’s just a feeling I have.

I finished the last lab session of the semester today with the conclusion of my digital design lab assignment. I created a circuit comprising of a timer and 9 other chips, and it has a function to count the number of signals that got passed through the circuit. Something like that. The demonstration went well and I’ll be getting max marks for the demo. I answered the questions well too, in my opinion. Other than one slight problem, the rest of the questions were answered rather satisfactory. I was blur for a second when I tried to link period 1s = 1Hz. But nonetheless I think I did well.

Now that there’s only two weeks left, I have to seriously start doing some intense revision and preparation for the exams, so that I will be happy and excited when I get back my results in probably about a month’s time after the last paper? That should be in end May or early June, so I’m hoping it’ll be a good birthday present for me. 🙂

On a lighter note, the horoscope yesterday said my love life is peaking, which is rather sad for me. For normal people, they should be elated at that, but for me, the thought that this kind of life is called peaking is a rather sad thought. It just simply means, it won’t get any better than this. LOL. Engineer logic.

Anyway, there has been a recent surge in count of EE couples. Some of them really hang out all the time with each other, to the point its obvious to me, a total stranger. I wonder how fast they’ll get sick of each other if they keep seeing each other during lesson and lectures and lunch and what have you. But I also think it’s rather sweet. At least they have each other to rely on when they have problems with EE. For me, I’m just glad I have friends for that. Anyway in my opinion I wouldn’t want someone in the same course. Too similar le. Haha.

Omg. I’m like super tired. Haha.

The first week of school

As with all semesters, I’ll talk about what I’m going to do for these few months. The first week of school is ending in one day’s time, and this week has seriously disrupted my plans for my university education.

Originally, I planned to take MA2222 in sem 5, and the other 2 Financial Mathematics minor modules in sem 8, which will allow me to graduate with a Minor in Financial Mathematics. The plan was that I clear MA2216 as an overloaded module last semester, which I did. This semester’s plan was to clear an Arts Gem (General Education Module) as an overloaded module, and next’s sem is to clear MA2222.

However, due to the new rule that I can only bid for my 6th module in round 3 onwards, I didn’t manage to get my arts Gem. Hence I have to move it to the other semesters, and I’ll most probably move it to sem 8, hereby replacing one of the final 2 Financial Mathematics minor module. Hence I will not graduate with a minor in Financial Mathematics. Anyway a minor only appears in the transcript and not in the degree scroll, so less one module is not going to hurt me much. I’m taking it for information anyway.

The other move I can take is to drop the whole minor. I have cleared enough electives such that I do not need those 3 modules to make up my graduation credit count. Of course, this is subjected to my plan of attending Industrial Attachment, which will give me 12MC of credit. If I do not go, I would have to take the 3 modules.

Hence, for the first time in NUS, I am taking a 20MC semester! Shocked? Don’t worry, I only overloaded once. The first sem was 19MC, 2nd was 21MC and the 3rd 24mc. Hence this is the firs time I took a proper semester with the correct workload.

However it feels a little slack because my timetable, for the first time, is packed in such a way that only 1 lecture is after lunch. The rest will finish before lunch, and my lessons are all back to back with no time to rest. Such is the cruelty of only having 1 slot for lectures.

The first week is going to end off normally, though I will have to do a tutorial since EE2006 had to start tutorials in the 2nd week. All my other modules start in the 3rd week. 2 of my modules are once every two weeks, so in a way there is not much rush in completing tutorials.

These are the modules I’m taking this semester:
EE2006 Digital Design
EE2009 Signals
EE2010 Systems and Controls
EE2012 Analytical Methods in Electrical and Computer Engineering
SSA2211 Evolution of the global city state

For EE2006, the lecturer seems good and I think I’ll be most interested in this module. I think with that my specialization in year 3 should be more or less decided.

EE2009’s lecturer is good too. I was able to listen and absorb for the two full hours.

EE2010’s lecturer is not too bad, but maybe the content now is a little dry so I’m day dreaming at times. The content till now is mainly the basics.

EE2012’s lecturer can really make me sleep. Sometimes I do not know what’s the point in telling us some technical examples, when he’s trying to teach probability. Hopefully things will become better.

I’m going for my SSA2211 lecture later at 6-8. Had a long break since 12 noon.

One week is going to end. 5 more weeks to recess week and the dreaded mid term tests!

Yosh. Going to work hard.

To S/U or not to S/U

S/U

There’s a recent facebook group by NTU students that is going on a recruiting spree to petition NTU to allow for the S/U option to be exercised after the results are out. This is due to NUS changing it’s policy to allow us to exercise the S/U option after we got our results.

A little background information for the uninitiated. A typical undergraduate takes 5 modules each semester and each of the modules are graded. They count towards our final grade and hence each module is equally important. The S/U option is called the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory option, and allows for a certain module to be graded on a S/U basis, hence it will not affect our final grade, called the Grade Point Average (GPA) for NTU students, or the Cumulative Average Point (CAP) for NUS students.

In my opinion, I feel that both scenarios have their respective advantages or disadvantages, and it is a matter of what you prefer. Some people may like it that they can decide to S/U a particular module after the midterm examinations, and hence do not have to spend time on that module. They can then spend time on the four other modules, and hence have a greater chance in improving the scores. This would also mean that in the NUS system, we typically have to work harder for all the modules so that we can have a comparison, and decide the S/U the lousiest one. The disadvantage in this sense is that you have to work hard in all modules, though one can claim to give up on a module and S/U it afterwards.

The advantage of the NUS model, something that is well loved by most students, NTU or NUS, is that you do not know which module may end up being the worst one, and hence you can exercise the S/U option correctly. What if the module you dislike is the one you got an A for, but the one that you had the utmost confidence in turned out to be that nasty B? I guess I need not explain.

However, reading the facebook group, it has come to my attention that the NTU administration feels that changing the system to follow NUS will “compromise on the quality” of the degrees.

Personally, I feel that my NUS degree has not been compromised. Had NUS not changed it system, I doubt my CAP would change much. I will explain why.

The only part where my CAP will change will be the last semester. Just like the scenario I gave above, I actually had a module I disliked, and it ended up being an acceptable grade. Had I S/Ued before my examinations, I would have lost that grade. However, another module which I thought I’ll do not too badly for, actually was the one I S/Ued in the end. However, the difference would probably be quite negligible after the end of the four years when the proportion of difference this grade would make would decrease.

Why would I not be affected for the other 2 S/U options I have left? The reason is simple. I’m now in my Year 2, 2nd semester (in 2 weeks time), and I can S/U all my non Core modules from now on. I’ll have one Arts GEM (General Education Module) and one Singapore Studies module to clear, and I would probably S/U both. I doubt that my humanities side is strong enough to give me a grade that will actually pull up my CAP. The rest of my electives and breadths have all been cleared.

So then, I doubt it will compromise on the quality of my degree. That said, note that only the non-core modules can be S/Ued, and our degree is given based on the core modules that we learn. Seriously, do you think that Understanding the Universe contributes to the quality of my Electrical Engineering degree? I doubt that my future bosses would seriously consider that to be the basis of whether I am capable or not. Since the core modules form the backbone of our degrees, then how can it compromise on the quality when the modules to S/U are the non-core modules? Especially so when the other modules are just there to give us a greater exposure to other fields. Exposure and nothing else.

In conclusion, I feel that the NUS system has more advantages, especially since it takes away the element of a gamble. S/Uing a module before the results are known can be considered a gamble. You’ll never know if you’ll lose or win. But although it has more advantages, I do not think 3 modules of gambling will make such a big difference in our scores, taking into consideration my own situation. Hence whether to change or not will not make a difference to me if I’m in NTU.