M208 2011 – All over, the day after the exam

Well that was a fun day. Not feeling at my most prepared on the maths front, my fiancee off to hospital for a minor surgical procedure, and then to top it off work phones up with a Priority 1 failure of a business critical system and can I fix it. So I wasn’t in the greatest frame of mind when I sat down for the exam.

Turned the paper over and some of it looked good.

Most of section 1 looked like the past papers I’d been working on.There was only one that I didn’t attempt as I couldn’t spot anything in there and decided the time would be better spent on other questions. Though the inequality drove me crazy as I could see the answer, but the method to get there properly had disappeared.

Section 2 had an Eigenvalues/Eigenvector question, so that was great. But the rest of them looked unusual. Looks like the counting theorem question from the specimen paper is the new large cayley table question, shame I had no idea how to attempt that bit, but at least i got to draw some pretty squares for a bit. I don’t remember seeing counting theorem question in a TMA, but I’ve not been back to check conclusively. Another point for making sure to attend the Day schools.

So if you’re reading this in preparation for the 2012 M208 exam, then rely more on the specimen paper and the 2011 past paper if you can get hold of it as it looks like they’ve changed the format, which is annoying. And make sure you attend any day schools that you can, as hopefully the tutors will have been told roughly what to expect in the exam paper.

As with MS221, get really familiar with the handbook as it’s great for checking you’ve got the definitions or rules right. I added some example questions/solutions from past papers as well which made some of the explanations a bit easier to follow. I also added a few extra standard integrals/derivatives as I always panic that I’ve got them wrong, and they usually use the same standards, ie:

    \[ \dfrac{1}{1+x}, \dfrac{1}{1-x}, etc \]

So having them stuffed away at the end is handy.

I’m confident I passed (>40%), but I don’t think I’ll be expecting any joyous news when the results dribble out in December. But it does mean that I’ve probably passed the module even with some not too bright TMA results.  Looking forward to a bit of a break from maths now for a couple of months.

2 comments on “M208 2011 – All over, the day after the examAdd yours →

  1. I agree that the paper was quite different. I was annoyed that there weren’t any questions on series and their convergence nor a big Cayley table question. But pleased there was a diagonalisation question. So a bit of a curates egg We’ll just have to wait and see.

  2. Yes, I’d concentrated my revision on the past papers, so when I went through the specimen paper on Sunday it all came as a bit of a shock.

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