Oh hi again,
I knew I forgot some things from the previous notice (I had a list in my head).
I have released to your grades page your exam mark breakdown (though short answer is lumped into one mark). I want to be really clear that it's normal for your marks to be lower than you expected - exams are just like this quite often. In my experience a student who thinks they got an 85% will get like a 60%, and those who think they got a 60% will get like a 35%. Or something like that. Because exams are quite "time-poor" its just easy to make mistakes, miss things, miss-interpret things without having the benefit you do with assignments - chatting to friends, sleeping and coming back the next day, etc.
The average exam mark was 22/40. If you got 20/40 in the final exam that puts you in the top half of performers. Keep things in perspective.
2. If you're feeling sad about marks
Look - sometimes marks suck. Marks can carry some pretty bad implications and feelings sometimes - whether it be with family, friends, or more practical things like academic standing, scholarships, visas, etc.
I have been surrounded by a lot of people who failed courses in my life - as a student, as a tutor, as a lecturer. In the vast majority of those situations I can speak confidently that doing poorly or failing a course was something people picked themselves up from and made progress in spite of it. After months or a year they'd completely forget about their marks.
So many people I know that have failed courses are now doing amazing things like engineering at Tesla, or fancy jobs overseas, with big salaries. A poor mark in a course is just a speedbump for most people. And the reality for many is that a bad mark in the course is only as bad as what you follow up with in future terms. These things happen, and I have faith in most of you to be able to put it in perspective, pick yourself up, and make the most out of what comes next. For anyone feeling in a bad place with their marks send me an email about it anytime if you want to chat.
Regardless of anything I try and say, it's easy to get into a bad headspace about all this stuff. For a small number of students, failing courses can have practical implications (e.g. visas) that can't be waived by thinking positively. It's just awful. Always reach out to people you know and trust if you're ever feeling down - it will be OK. And remember that UNSW has a bunch of services like
that you can seek support from.
I'd like to congratulate our top achieving students, in order:
A big congratulations to everyone again for their incredible work this term. And thank you for all the both kind and constructive words from MyExperience. They've been passed onto the team and will no doubt be taken back on board :)
As many of you know this was the first time running this course, so thank you again for making it such a great and pleasant experience. Before the term started I was quite unsure if I'd made the right decision in saying yes, but after interacting with so many great students and working with an incredible team of tutors it has awesome.
If nothing else, I hope your takeaway from COMP2521 is that you remember that every situation has a different problem-solution fit, and that particular fit sometimes needs to be considered in terms of the time and memory needed at scale. You'll forgot about Tries and Hamiltonian paths in a few months, but never lose the habit you have hopefully developed of thinking critically about algorithms and data structures.
Hoping we all see each other around!!
If you are a student in your final term and this was the only course you have failed; you will have been identified by the student services team as a student who's potentially eligible for supplementary assessment (e.g. a Supp exam).
If this is not your final course in your final term, we cannot offer you supplementary assessment, except via Special Consideration.