Q: Since we get to drop 3 PS and 2 labs, how many exams do we get to drop?

A: None. All the exams count.

Q: If I can not make an exam can I make it up?

A: No make up exams. If you miss an exam you get a zero for the exam.

Q: Hey man, I was sick, had some legal problems, or was involved in a university sponsored event.

A: If I am contacted before the exam and warned ahead of time I will substitute your final exam score for the missed exam. If this happens more than once you have problems beyond my control and you should seriously consider whether you should remain in the course.

Q: I'm just not ready for this exam, can I take a make-up?

A: No make-up exams. You can not miss an exam and expect me to substitute your final exam score for the missed exam. That option is for planned/scheduled problems. If you are not prepared for an exam that is your problem and you will have to accept the consequences.

Q: You are cruel.

A: No, just being fair. Everyone is in the same situation. I can not give preferential treatment to any single student. My goal is to treat everyone the same, apply the course policy consistently to all students.

Q: How much time do I have to take the exam?

A: Each exam will be 60 minutes.

Q: Will that be enough time for me to complete all the questions on the exam?

A: That is a tough question. I try to make the length of my exams such that I can complete it in 20 minutes. But the amount of time required to answer the questions varies with a student's preparation and knowledge of the material, and how fast you work/solve problems. The majority of the problems on the exam are similar, but not exact, to problems discussed in class, help sessions, on problem sets, past exams, problems at the end of the chapter, etc. However a few (around 10 points is my goal) are more challenging and will require you to actually think. For the majority of the problems on the exam I do not expect you to do too much thinking. If you have to do lots of thinking you have not prepared sufficiently. Before an exam you must practice problem solving so that you can do most problems quickly and efficiently. If it takes too long to do straightforward problems on the exam you will have a difficult time completing the exam.

Q: How can I practice for one of your exams?

A: I will post a sample exam from a previous semester (SP01 was the last time I taught this course) on the Exam link on the web site. Print it out and put it away. Prior to our scheduled exam, find 60 minutes of time, get your calculator and a pencil and take the exam. Check your work when you are complete and see which problems you did well and which you did not. Adjust your studying. I know this is tough to do but it works!

Q: What if I do not understand a question during the exam? Or I think there is not enough information to answer the question.

A: Raise your hand and I or your TA will try to clarify the question, or check that there is enough information on the exam to answer the question.

Q: Do I have to memorize EVERYTHING?

A: You will have to memorize some things, but not much this semester. All mathematical relationships, that are not definitions, will be provided on the Useful Information sheet. Typically the Useful Information sheet on the sampel exam is identical, if not similar to the Useful Information sheet on our exam.

Q: Dr. G, do you like surprises?

A: NO! keep me aware of what is going on in your life if you are having difficulty attending class, completing problem sets, attending laboratory, taking exams. I do not give special treatment to students, I must fairly and consistently apply the policy of the course. If you are having problems during the semester as a responsible adult you must keep me posted so that I can offer you the best guidance. I do not have to be told specifics. But everyone must understand I can not adjust course policy after the fact. Missing an occasional lecture, or problem set is no biggy. But if the occurrence is frequent you must think about whether you should stay in the course. If you have chronic problems it is unlikely I will award in Incomplete. I give Incompletes for missing the final (excused), and that is about it. The University drop policy is liberal enough that you can make decisions in a timely manner. But you must face facts! I will not be the answer to your problems under most circumstances.

Q: Geldar, you are cruel!

A: I know I sound cruel, but I am fair. AND I DO LISTEN! AND I DO CARE ABOUT ALL OF MY STUDENTS! But I'm no p----! If you are having problems get in touch with me, perhaps I can help!


Got more questions? Contact the answer guy, dr..g and he'll add your question to this FAQ. Anonymously of course.