“Preparing to sit exams” – Challenging exams (discussion topic).
Group Discussions are the “most challenging” and Takeaway Papers are the “easiest” for me.
I feel that group discussions contribute a more significant amount of difficulties to an examination process as a group of people conversing, naturally, means a wider range of foreign opinions, thoughts, insights etc. In comparison to an exam whose participant is yourself and a lecturer (who marks according to a rubric – generally) – the answer is, to say, “fixed” and unlike the aforementioned group discussion, it can not (or not often will-) ‘change topic’ or include conflict between differing opinion. Some group discussions may be related to a political scenario in which opinion dominates educational opinion. In saying this, not all group discussions are as “heated” as others but the point remains that people agree and disagree with one another. Group discussions as well neglect the personalities of some students participating, the “stereotypical” introvert will most likely not function effectively in a crowd, however, they will function effectively in a quiet and well-monitored exam environment.
To write on my “easiest” selection of “Takeaway Papers”.
Takeaway Papers allow the student to choose their environment, whether a social café or silent room and do not restrict students to a time restraint (meaning not 1:30hr-3:00hr to write an exam but rather, say, 24hr+). One may argue that takeaway exams are just open-book tests but longer (which they are), but in a real-life environment, people have 24/7 access to sources such as google… Takeaway Papers, additionally, do not force students to remain still in a room for 1:30hr+ which, in many cases I’m sure, has some sort of mental effect – speaking from someone with ADHD, I do not function well… - At home I can pause my work, make something to eat or go for a short walk (I’d say healthier – fresh air etc). I recall high school exams being incredibly difficult and not the test themselves… rather the writing in a room for 3 hours straight, followed by an immediate trip home to study for the next test – not mentally or physically healthy.
My suggested tips for Group Discussions? I don’t necessarily have any…
Preparing extensive notes, prepare to be empathetic with others’ views and maybe a dose of coffee in the morning for social energy.
I am interested to hear others suggested tips for group discussions and how to approach them.