Taking clear and well-organised lecture notes is not only important for later revision, but also helps to keep up with the lecture pace. Here are some things that you need to know about lecture notes taking.
1> Straight copy from lecture PPT is pointless: Really, why would you even bother going to lectures if you are just gonna copy stuff from PPT. In University lectures, most lecturers don’t just read stuff he wrote in PPT, instead he talks about stuff that’s elaborated based on the slides. Focus more on what the lecturer says and writes in the lecture 😛
2> Get enough sleep before lecture: A good night sleep will definitely help you concentrate on the lectures (especially during the lectures that you find boring).
This discussion is dedicated for the prospective Biologists at Imperial. Here is what you are going to have in a Biology exam at Imperial. We have four modules during the first year and each module will have an exam eventually. So there are four exams each year. In every exam, there will be three sections.
1> 40 Multiple (5) choices questions:
Negative marking system is something you should be aware of. Don’t guess the answers and only answer what you are most confident with is the whole point of this system. (And I’m not a big fan of this tbh :P) Most multiple choice questions in the mock paper (only a mock paper provided for each term) of the first two modules (BCM and OB) are unchanged for the last two years, so there really isn’t much you can get from the MCQ in mock paper.
I’ve got some emails from my beloved readers, asking for my revision techniques. So I though I’d do a discussion on how I revise for exams. It is really up to you to decide which method suits you best so my version is certainly not a perfect example. I humbly present to you……the revision notes!
I enjoy making revision notes after having that lecture (usually on weekends or over free time). The key difference between revision notes and lecture notes is that processed information are being listed in a logical manner with key annotations. Here are a few points I’d like to provide before posting an example of my revision notes:
1> Keep the wording short and concise: Trust you don’t want to read some hideous long paragraphs in some midnight to prepare for exams!
Congratulations if you have studied A-level Chemistry or any level in equivalence in high school! Cause the first two sections of BCM largely contain information about Chemistry. If you didn’t learn A-level Chemistry, that’s fine! (It’s not the end of the world!) The part of Chemistry involved in Biology is not that much. (Frankly you only need to know elements like C, O, H. N from the periodic table!)
For the first section, Chemistry of biomolecules, instead of going through the PPT in lectures, pre-recorded lecture videos are provided to watch and learn in your own time. You will need to answer questions in lectures.
The amount of information you received at University is much more than what is taught in A-levels or IB. Biology is a highly information-orientated subject, meaning that a good memory on Biological facts and deductive reasoning ability are essential. Just to give you a simple example, the first module we learnt is OB (Biology of organisms) which consists 4 main sections.
Phylogenetics comprised of basic knowledge in phylogenetics and the vast unknown territory in evolutionary history. (5 lectures)
Animal section goes through key features and key phylum and classes in both vertebrates and invertebrates, along with the evolutionary relationship between them.
I’ve just finished two Biology exams this week (ABSOLUTELY EXHAUSTED) and I will start posting the following posts over the next few days.
>What Henry did for his revision 😛
>How much information is there in OB (Biology of organisms) and BCM (Biochemistry and Microbiology) 😛 — Attention prospective Biologists, this is very useful for you!
>How Henry takes notes during lecture and re-group his notes after lectures 😛
>How different is it between the sample paper they provided and the actual exam paper I had 😛
From now on, all the academic stuff will be allocated to the Henry, the Academia section.
YO YO YO WHAT UP MY BELOVED READERS!
With the joys of the winter carnival on a Friday night few weeks ago, we have officially finished the first term at Imperial. Christmas holiday officially begins! Holiday means having a butt load of fun and spending time with your loved ones. It is also a great time to think about what we have achieved last term and how we would have improved to make our life easier next term. Here’s my personal reflection upon the academic experience in term 1. (Short and Concise)
PLAN YOUR TIME WISELY
This might sound so cliché, but it’s just that important to be discussed over and over.
Christmas holiday is coming up after two weeks! I’m feeling a bit excited 😛 I’m going to stay in London over the break and spend a week to travel to the North 😀 (And of course for boxing day shopping!) This week was all about plants. We had several lectures about plants like plants under stress, plants under attack, life as a tree and so on! It’s really amazing to see how plants have adapted/evolved to defend itself, feed itself, and so on! And it’s really awesome to have some lectures given by my personal tutor (though I’m still waiting for him to reply to my email) This school week was finished with a practical which is essentially to find 8 different characteristics (such as the number of stamen, the number of anther, ovary position…)in at least 8 different plants (such as fressia).
It’s 9:56 am on Saturday and I just got up after some amazing-10-hour sleep 😀
Since this is my first post, I felt like some introduction should be in place. So HEY lads and girls/boys and lassies 😀 My name is Henry and I’m a first year Biologist at Imperial College. After spending nearly my entire life in this lovely city of Qingdao on China’s eastern coastline, I’ve started a new journey here in London. The little red dot below is Qingdao. (ever heard of Tsingtao Beer? Yep! That’s from Qingdao!) Seafood and German wursts are something you don’t want to miss out in Qingdao.