And six days after the previous exam, I come face to face with the last one for this semester. And just like in the HSC it happened to be the hardest exam, the “legendary” Actuarial Mathematics exam. It reminds me of the 4U maths course last year, it was a fairly rushed course and was exceptionally hard; well the HSC exam was anyway.
I would never have figured that it was be extremely hard studying for this exam. Actually I don’t really know what was wrong with me; I found that I couldn’t do even half of last year’s paper, this was right after the Microeconomics exam, when I had do no proper revision yet; and somehow as the days progressed, I seemed to be making little improvement. I turn to a new past paper and there was another quarter of the paper where i didn’t know how to solve the problems. I think that these last six days have been my most stressful ever; I lacked a lot of confidence since my estimated performance was reflected in how much I could do of the past papers and so I was extremely worried.
It was only recently that I discovered that other people were having just as much trouble and that eased my mind a bit; I had hoped there would be major scaling from the raw mark of the exam, just as they had done in the HSC. Hopefully this is still the case here.
Exam 4: MATH1151
Course: Mathematics for Actuarial Studies and Finance
This is the big one, the past papers were so hard I thought that I should just concede with doing about three-quarters of the paper and just hopefully scaling would produce and exceptionally high mark for me still. This is supposedly my best subject and if I were not to get a really high mark, it would cut down on my self-esteem.
Lots of people were worrying prior to the exam as well; I could hear them. And for once I was actually cramming hard right before an exam, something I normally would never do; I was actually quite into it, only affording to look at my watch every few minutes to see how close the exam was. When at last the exam was finally to start, knowing that everyone had the same thoughts as I did made me feel a little bit better. I know that’s wrong but in terms of relativity it’s a fair thought to have.
The paper was two hours long and this time I was careful not to underestimate it like for Discrete Mathematics. Given only four questions the paper doesn’t seem entire hard. Most of the past papers had a different course layout so their final exam back then was three hours; shame I never actually timed myself for any of them so I couldn’t really estimate how long it would take me to finish today’s paper.
The funny thing was that I found today’s paper rather easy, compared to previous years, as did many of my friends. This was a bit of a relief for me; and judging on my performance for this exam, I might not even need and scaling; that would be nice. Of course there were a few questions I couldn’t do; I gave it a shot and conceded after a while in favour of moving forward in the paper so I know I’ve lost marks here and there, but at least it won’t be as serious as missing half the paper.
I finished exactly when time was up and I was really glad I had a shot at every question and that I had just enough time to do as much as I could; I managed to do the last question and that constitutes doing the whole paper, even though any extra time I had could’ve been utilised for those questions that I didn’t manage to completely finish. Hopefully I’ll still get a relatively high mark. I didn’t count how many questions I didn’t properly finish but things should be alright I hope.
And that’s it, I had finally finished the first semester of university. Gonna work out ways of making the next one easier to study for.