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Final Two Weeks of Class

This has been another week of work. As soon as I finished my history paper, I had to start my research poster for my Australian Biodiversity class. It’s all about the Tasmanian Devil and why captive breeding programs are so important because the facial tumor that they get is easily spread and has a 100% mortality rate over the course of 6 months. It’s very sad that is has happened and their populations have dropped around 80% since 1996 when the tumor first appeared. Every zoo that has a Tasmanian Devil participates in the breeding program. It is also very important because the Devils have a very low genetic diversity. Part of my grade is making a research poster and then presenting it to my professors. I will be doing this on Tuesday, so I’m nervous, but I feel ready. Even though I have experience presenting research, I think it is an extremely important thing to learn, so I think it’s really great that classes here incorporate that into the curriculum.

We only have two more weeks of classes here! We started exam review sessions in classes already. I have two exams during week 13 of classes. One is my laboratory exam for Astronomy. I really enjoy lab because you run computer programs very similar to what Astronomers use during observations and research. I was expecting to use the telescope of top of the building a lot more, but I’ve learned there is a whole lot more you can do on a computer, that in real life would be connected to a telescope. We’ve done everything from measuring pulsars to seeing how they measure how old the universe is using the red shift in galaxies. It’s really interesting and I am very happy I took the class. This lab exam is 10% of my grade, but my final for the course is 80% of my grade! That is very nerve wracking! My other exam is Forestry. In this class the final is 40% of the final grade and you only answer four out of the seven essay questions, meaning each question is 10% of your grade.

I feel like I’ve experienced the two very extremes of testing. Drexel where I have an exam every other week for each class, but they aren’t worth a lot and then USydney where there is only one exam and it is worth a very significant portion of your grade. I think they both have their ups and downs and I’m glad I’ve gotten to experience both now!

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