Assessing Failure

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Ughh, this is a hard topic to approach

I never predicted such a thing would ever happen.

It was just about 24 hours (more or less) since that exam. I put a lot of effort for this exam (significantly more than the usual) and the end result is not what I was expecting. Ended up just getting middling results. This is probably the most work I have ever done towards an exam. Even back in SPM I didn’t study this hardcore. Was literally preparing for it in the last 2 weeks. Did a lot of problems, went to the tutoring center for numerous hours a day and in the end, my biggest enemy was not my inability of solving the problems. I was simply running out of time.

Such a thing has not happened to me ever (in the context of an examination). In the past, the reason why I would acclaim my bad score in an examination is due to the lack of studying or even the lack of interest into the topics. But this time around, I was totally engrossed with the subject of statistics and I was pretty determined to get a good grade on it. I somehow found the reason to love all this hypothesis testing and for the first time (in a long time), I felt compelled to understand why and what the formulas and questions was representing in a real world situation. I can honestly say that I understood what the content was about and it was pretty meaningful to me.

Part of the reason to this failure was due to my careless-ness but that is related to the insufficient time to work out other problem so I did not carefully look back at other questions to see if I got it right the first time. During the exam, I was so determined to understand the language of the problem and ended up wasting precious time on the questions. If the exam was like 30 minutes longer, I would have probably worked out the solutions to those problems. I am pretty sure I am not the only one which ran out of time to work out of problems, the questions were unexplainable indecisive.

The moment I stepped out of the exam hall, I already knew my grade was doomed and in the next 20 minutes slowly pacing back to my dorm, my mind was literally blank and I felt like I was in one of those movie scenes where the person is standing there with a timelapse of the surrounding just moving around. Initially, my mind was literally going everywhere besides being completely blank. Ended up eating a lot and lot of spaghetti for dinner. Soaking myself with food under the mild-depression.



Unlike other math classes I took in the last three years, statistics is really a whole new ball game for me. I think the biggest problem for me is that I do not fully understand the language of the problems. The fact that these statistical tests are so damn similar makes it that much tougher. I do not blame the Professor for putting up such questions in the exam, I see where she is going with all of this. Her hope (that she repeatedly mentions the lectures) is that we can finish this course and have a deep understanding on what statistics is really like. But the fact is that only a couple of students in the class are from the Industrial Engineering department and for some wild reason, the CS department lists this as a required course for the major. OK, making this stats class a require subject is not a wild  reason at all, just like all the math classes, this class is providing CS students with a foundation towards logical thinking. Something that is very important in the world of solving software problems.

After sleeping over it, I think I have worked out my thoughts. This issue is seemingly identcal to all the dilemmas I have been having during my journey to attend ASU. Academically, this is basically just bad news but on the upside of everything I think I finally understand the true meaning of higher education. Before this, my idea of higher education is the combination of academic and out-of-class activites which promote personal development. The biggest goal of higher education is to get a high paying job pretty much the experience  of the process.

I never really understood what people meant when they said that the process/experience of something is what’s important and the solution is just a complimentary kind of thing  . Maybe I understood what it technically meant but I just could not fully relate to that in the past. This time around, I think I fully understand the meaning of that. After thinking all about this exam for the most part of today, I see where all of this is going. This tells me that I need to work on my ability to work in stressful conditions.

the process/experience of something is what’s important

As I explained earlier, the problem with this is not my capability to solve the problems. I could have done a better job if I was not freaking out over the time I have left and to calmly think through the problem. Not too sure how am I supposed to overcome this issue but moving forward, being able to work under tense/stressful conditions will probably be to my benefit. The price of realizing that I have a bad rapport for solving problems in stressful conditions: a bad examination.

In relation

This part of the article probably doesn’t mean too much about the main debate today but I do feel the need to channel my thoughts about it. So, today’s Philosphy class was about a new topic based on three key terms. Determinism, Indeterminism and Fatalism.

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But basically from my brief understanding of these three terms, they are basically referring to the concept of fate. The professor gave this example about ‘The legend of Oedipus’ and another reference to how he met his wife. In both cases, the ‘people’ could not run away from the fate despite taking separate paths in life. Well, in relation to the stats exam, I think that fatalism had something to do with me writing this article and understanding the reason behind higher education.

Prior to this, I did believe that fate does exist in life and sometimes I do look back and rethink what would life be if I did not make that decision. Still wondering how my life would be right now if I chose not to attend Sunway University and went to somewhere else instead. Everything happens for a reason and as saddening and depressing as things might look, it might just be a blessing for something far greater than the bad that the initial cause has made. Some things are just meant to happen, even if I didn’t learn that I have a problem coping under stress with this stats exam, I would most likely realize all this sooner or later. I know this is a pretty vague example but you get what I mean right?

Overall this experience has also made my mind a little bit more mature. Another thing is that I might have found a good use for the concepts I have learnt in the philosophy class. This article was a product of what I have learnt in PHI 101 in the last three months. You know what, maybe studying something out of your major isn’t that bad after all.

Till the next time! I’m still working on standardizing the schedule of posting articles. Ughh, another problem to work on~


One thought on “Assessing Failure

  1. Pingback: IEE 380 with Professor Linda Chattin – ^ dickwyn .

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