Acedemic Review

I’ve successfully finished 1 year of Computer Science @HullUniversity with a nicely deserved 1st class, yaaey me!!! which I’m chuffed about ūüôā

As this blog title suggest I’m going to publically “review my academic progress” for the year. Its a chance for me to reflect how I’ve performed and give me an idea on how I could improve personal performance next year. In other words, a ‘performance review’.

Break-Down: How The UK University System Is … (Hull University At Least)

– 1 academic year = 2 semesters (consisting a total of 6 taught modules).

– each module is worth 20 credits.

– to progress to 2nd year, 120 credits need to be obtained (pass all modules).

semester 1: modules I undertook (October – December)

  • computer systems
  • programming 1
  • information technology and professional skills¬†(year long module)
  • passport 1 japanese (year long module) & free elective module

semester 2: modules I undertook (February РJune)

  • software engineering and human computer interaction
  • programming 2
  • information technology and professional skills¬†(year long module)
  • passport 1 japanese¬†(year long module) &¬†free elective module

*note a free elective is an scheme to allow students to study under any facility/department within the university, students can choose only one module from the scheme per year.

*note please refrer to for detailed description on each module.

Results: What I Obtained …

Computer Systems

Mark: 67

Pass/Fail : Pass

This course taught the hardware and logical side of computing. To the average foe, this would be the inside of a computer and the reasoning and logic to how everything works within a pc/laptop/mobile/tablet.

I won’t hold back here on saying that this was a dam right tuff module. As a student I was expected to have read around 5 chapters of the worlds longest book within the space of 2 weeks.¬†Realistically¬†as a 1st year in his 2nd week of starting university this¬†naturally¬†didn’t happen, I only had ¬†just about recovered from freshers week by then ;p …. never the less a mark of 67 = 2:1 isn’t bad.

#TheGood :

  • marks obtained from assessments were within the high range. 2:1 or 1st.
  • revised in good time for assessments to allow me to perform well.

#TheBad :

  • not reading lecture materials (in fairness they were block copied word for word from our reading materials anyway = my excuse).

#TheUgly :

  • admittedly sleeping in one/two lectures (I won’t explain why; just to say that if you end up sleeping in a lecture then its either due to the lecturer or the student. I’ll let you dwell on that point).

Information Technology and Professional Skills

Mark: 75

Pass/Fail : Pass

This module is designed to bring all students to a baseline of knowledge and experience in the essential business and office software systems used in professional life. It covers wider aspects of professionalism related to the computer industry.

Generally this felt like a rather pointless course to study, learning about errr “……” ¬†see i’ve already forgotten what on earth I was taught. On the plus side, I do understand why and how this course helps to promote being an “Professional” in the IT industry.

#TheGood :

  • average at a 2:1 for all fortnightly practical lab test.
  • team leadership skills was put into practice, clear communication, organisation, documentation & management. (so i’m led to believe by my peers).
  • prepared in advance for all in-class test.

#TheBad :

  • Didn’t finished my in class test (very disappointed as I was on track to do very well in that exam). Not enough practice on timing for this particular exam.

#TheUgly :

  • There is no ugly for this module. Surprisingly.

Passport 1 Japanese

Mark: 48

Pass/Fail : Pass

#TheGood :

  • managed to pass XD
  • can write in hiragana and katakana characters.
  • found a wealth of really good resources to help me next year.
  • developed good strategies to learn japanese.
  • met some good friends along the way.
  • learnt a great deal of the foundation of japanese language.

#TheBad :

  • being over ambition got in the way. I made ludicrous claims that I would practise my japanese speaking and writing¬†everyday¬†for at least 2 hours at a time on weekdays, weekends where to increase to 3 hours. This may seem like a reasonable task to do, but when it gets to the crunch off it, It became and was unrealistic goal to complete.
  • Lessons where late afternoon, by that time I was brain dead so walked away after every lesson completely dead and in the process missing my dinner.

#TheUgly :

  • only started revising for my final end of year exam probably a week before the exam date. Although I was pretty prepared beforehand hence the cocky attitude to start revising a week before, this is never a good idea and one mistake I shall not take again. As you never know what surprises that maybe waiting for you on that exam paper on that fateful day.
  • Ended up do my homework the day before it was due every week for an whole academic year without fail. It ruined my sunday evenings. This is the punishment I gave myself for neglecting my homework all week.

Programming 1

Mark: 82

Pass/Fail : Pass

#TheGood :

  • despite some small less significant bug(s) found in my program, it worked in regards to the specification.
  • learnt a lot about time-management and planning for software projects in the real world.
  • exercised my skills in c# (which was a completely new programming language for me at the time).
  • some pretty dam good scores in weekly practical lab quizzes ( top scoring through the whole semester) – to be honest they were pretty easy questions and most of the class got the same type of score as me.

#TheBad :

  • bug(s) found in live demo ruined my chance of obtaining a 1st. This bug appeared because I tampered with the code before the live demonstration to improve it further for more marks. (this failed miserably, lol).
  • poor time management & planning delegated to the development of ¬†my programming coursework. If I had plan out what tasks I needed to do beforehand, plus figure how much time it should take to complete certain task, I might have been in a better situation during my live programming demo.

#TheUgly :

  • My coursework demo session was almost disastrous. The night before I made a small change to improve the program I had coded, big mistake as this crashed the whole program when a certain condition was executed. Luckily it was an first attempt and all other aspect of the program worked so I was let off lightly by my marker:p

Programming 2

Mark: 81

Pass/Fail : Pass

#TheGood :

  • exercised my skills in c# further.
  • put into practice more advanced programming skills such as delegates, dictionary, list, etc.
  • learnt WPF (Window Presentation Format) & put into practice.
  • actively used SQL within my coursework.

#TheBad :

  • time-management,¬†although¬†this was due to unforeseen¬†errors which (happens a lot in programming). I still could have managed this better than I had done. If management was better on my part, I would had been able to play around with adding¬†additional¬†cool features.
  • missed out on marks from the additional features added to my program due to the fact they didn’t work (lack of testing).

#TheUgly :

  • ¬†I probably started my coursework project from scratch a minimum of three times. Why I did this? I either found a better solution or the current solution wasn’t going to work or I had no clue how to really code a particular solution I had started.

Software Engineering and Human Computer Interaction

Mark: 68

Pass/Fail : Pass

This course covers some of the disciplines concerned with all aspects of complex software production, from project planning and initial specification, through design and development to the delivery and subsequent evolution of software. (Sounds like a mouthful but its actually pretty straightforward).

#TheGood :

  • as a group leader (for group project) I successfully managed to exercise my management skills.
  • I managed to produce a presentation of suitable quality to an audience.
  • algorithms coursework (individual work) turned out good, despite being my first attempt on writing a technical report.

#TheBad :

  • layout of technical documentation/report could’ve been better. (It was good, but could be much clearer).

#TheUgly :

  • spilling hot chocolate over someone elses report and pretending nothing happen by placing it underneath a pile of uncollected reports. Opsy!

There you have it, a full report of year 1 Computer Science. I’ve certainly learnt a lot & shall learn from my mistakes. “Embrace change and thrive on constant improvement”, ¬†is the motto for year 2.


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