The continuous assessment for this module consists of two class tests, each worth 10% of the module grade. The class test questions will be similar to questions asked in past exam papers or in the practice problems.
Class tests will be announced a week in advance. If you cannot attend a class test for good reason, you need to submit a special circumstances form with appropriate documentation as soon as possible, in order for this to be taken into account. Otherwise you will lose the marks.
Students last year found the class tests hard, probably because they had not prepared adequately for them. I will distribute a practice class test, so that you know what to expect. Do the practice problems in the class handbook: these are the best preparation.
The problems associated with this course are a bit unfamiliar, so you may find them difficult at first. The trick is to practise. For this reason, I have compiled a large bank of practice problems for you to try. (These are included in the course handbook you received at the beginning of the course—the linked pdf is in case you don't have this with you, or joined the course late and didn't get one.) Obviously you won't be able to do all of these straight away, but you should look through the set at regular intervals and try the ones where we have covered the material. By the end of the course you should be able to do all of these.
Click here for numerical answers to the practice problems. Note that many of the problems don't have numerical answers, so this document won't help you with those. If you are having difficulty with a practice problem, don't be afraid to ask—but, before doing so,
There are also example exam questions associated with each of the lectures. Each of these comes as three html, or occasionally pdf, files: the question itself, some hints, and an outline answer. Please attempt the question before peeking at the answer – you will learn much more that way. As the exam lasts two hours and is marked out of 50, if you want to check your speed you should allow about 2.4 minutes per mark.
Where possible, these are (parts of) real exam questions. If no real exam questions have been asked on this topic, an "exam-style" question is provided instead. The numbers of relevant practice problems are also given.
This course is designed to be fairly self-contained: you should not need to buy any of the recommended textbooks. However, it may be that you find some parts of the material hard to grasp, and in this case it may well help to try looking at it from a different point of view (a given style of explanation will always suit some people more than others). Here is a rough guide to the parts of the recommended textbooks (if any) relevant to each lecture. (The references to Liddle and Rowan-Robinson are to the second and fourth editions respectively. C stands for Chapter, A stands for Advanced Topic in Liddle.)