Exams

Okay. So to anyone here who cares enough to be reading this please prepare yourself. Because this entire post is going to be me venting about the exams that I am taking at my college. If the staff or someone at my college reads this then they’ll either understand my pain or I’ll get shouted at to take this down when I next walk through the doors. Either way, please know that this is just my coping mechanism and that I don’t mean most of the things that I am going to say. But if someone big gets to reading this… Then keep this in mind when you update the exam structure next (cause some of these points could make life so much better for everyone).

So, let’s begin shall we?

So I am just some kid in college who has to do their exams right? Yeah, we all know the feeling of dread right before an exam. The feeling of “Oh God have I revised everything I need to know?” …Yeah. That.

Anyway, I am one of the students who is given extra time in an exam. I get 25% more time than other students. Why? Because I am what some might call socially awkward… Now I always knew that I wasn’t the most charismatic guy in the world and I always had a feeling that I was kind of an introvert but I thought that was a bit harsh when I first heard the news (bear in mind that this was a solid 8 something years ago). They also didn’t say that I was socially awkward, but I’d rather not just have fragments of my medical history on the internet… So you know.

Anyway, it’s because of this that I am granted 25% extra time in my exams. Now, I am perfectly okay with any advantage I can get in an exam but even I think that this is stupid. What relevance does my social awkwardness have to my exam? I have racked my brain and I can only think of one situation where it would. This is if I was stuck on the phrasing of the question and was too worried to ask for help… Which I’m not. Not only is my comprehension above average (even if only slightly) but if I can’t understand the phrasing of the question… Then surely that’s my fault right? Not my social awkwardness.

I also get a laptop to use in the exam because my handwriting is awful. I’ve always tried to fix this but it never panned out. But because it didn’t, I get a laptop with Microsoft word and the spell checker turned off (obviously). Now for those who don’t know how this goes allow me to explain it to you… In a computer exam, I am required to do the following: place my name on each page, place my candidate number on each page and place the page number on each page. Now those things make perfect sense, I can understand all of that. But I never understood this one: Make sure you type with double spacing to assist the markers. Why do they need assistance with reading single space writing? Why? To put this into context, the answers are saved onto a memory stick and then sealed in a brown envelope that has your info on it. The memory stick is then delivered to some personnel who print it off.

Now, I’m not saying this to be mean. I don’t want a lot of backlash for this but… If you are unable to read a few single space pages of typed answers then why do you have a career in marking exam papers? For the record, candidates are required to type with Ariel font with a minimum of size 12. This means that the words should be perfectly legible as they are. But I am very used to typing on a laptop (as I use it in all of my lessons). Because of this, I am very used to typing all of my notes in single spaces. The very fact that I have to check my last paragraph to see if I remembered to use double space is seriously slowing down.

Now I can understand that some people’s eyesight might not be the best. I feel you. But seriously? This is ridiculous. There is no way that AQA or WJEC would hire someone whose eyesight was so bad that it made them unable to read single space text that was typed out in size 12 Ariel font.

My final gripe about exams is not about my own personal type of exam but the exam system itself. I can understand that we need to be tested on our natural ability but Jesus guys. At what point in our lives are we going to be stuck in a room on our own with no means of communication and no internet at the exact moment when we need to solve a particular problem? Pretty much never. I’ll admit that there are some circumstances but they are very unlikely to happen.

In a real world scenario, we will be able to find any information we need in literally about a minute and if we don’t understand something, there will almost always be someone nearby to help us. These are facts. One of my A Levels is Law ok? We learn about how the law is ever changing to suit the people, their morals and the changes in society. Allow me to ask a big question to everyone…

Why can’t exams do the same thing?

We make advances in our society every day for crying out loud! Why is it that we have to stick with these old-fashioned ways of testing each other? Let’s face it, the world is changing… We as people are changing. The way exams are now, we cannot call them accurate tests of our ability. This is because, in the world that we live in, we have the ability to aquire information at the click of a mouse. We have the ability to develop new ideas with the help of our friends and fellow collegues; things that we could never have attained on our own! So let’s make this work! If we all speak up about it then someone has to listen right? #ChangeExams

Welp, I’m all done here. If you want to give me your opinion then go for it. It’s only fair. I mean, you just spent God-knows how long reading my crap so tell me what you think!

Thanks for reading!

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Speech Communities (also gaming!)

Okay… Let’s play a game really quick. I call it: Guess the Speech Community. For those of you who don’t know, a Speech Community is a certain place or culture that has a specific lexis (certain words and phrases) that carries a specific meaning. Only people who are a part of this Speech Community will understand this lexis. Now I’m going to give a couple words and phrases from a Speech Community that I am familiar with. Okay here we go:

  • Pop
  • Bounce
  • Piercing
  • Negate
  • Draw

If you can guess which community I’m referring to from just those then you are either as big a fan of this community as I am or insanely lucky.

I’ll give a couple more… These ones are a bit more obvious:

  • Poly
  • Fusion
  • Direct Attack
  • Effect
  • Battle Phase
  • Excavate

A bit more obvious… I bet that a few other people managed to guess what I’m referring to from that didn’t they? Well for those who still don’t know… I’ll give you some dead giveaways:

  • Synchro
  • Tuner
  • Overlay
  • XYZ (Pronounced ‘Ehx-ee-zz’)
  • MST
  • Deck Out
  • Graveyard
  • Banish

Now that I have used the ones that give away what this is… I can now tell you that this terminology belongs to one of my all-time favourite games…

Yu-Gi-Oh!

Now I’d like you all to remember what I said at the start about Speech Communities. Only people who are part of the Speech Community will understand this lexis. To put this into context for some of you; to anyone who didn’t understand the words and phrases that I was using at the beginning, the only reason you didn’t know is because you are not a part of this Speech Community. If you knew what these words or phrases meant then you would most likely know where they came from.

But fear not! Your friend The Terminology Titan shall educate you all on the beauty that is: Yu-Gi-Oh terminology.

I’ll go through each word I used one by one explaining what each word means and give an example of where you would be likely to hear it.

Pop: When a card is destroyed by a card effect. Example: “And thanks to the use of my MST, I will now pop that face-down card.”

Bounce: When a card is sent back to its owner’s hand by a card effect. Example: And with the effect of my Neo-Spacian Grand Mole, I bounce that back to your hand.”

Piercing: When the difference between an attacking monster’s attack points and a defending monster’s defence points are dealt to the defending monster’s owner as damage (This can only be done with a card effect). Example: “And my Elemental Hero Bladedge deals piercing damage.”

Negate: When the effect of a card is negated by another card effect. “Example: I use Magic Jammer to negate the activation of your spell card.”

Draw: When you add the top card of your deck to your hand. Example: Alright. I Draw for turn.”

Poly: Short for Polymerization. A requirement for most fusion summons. Example: “And now I use Poly to fuse these 2 monsters together.”

Fusion: A type of Special Summon involving the fusion of 2 or more monsters. Example: “And now I fuse these 5 machine-type monsters to summon Chimeratech Overdragon.”

Direct Attack: An attack that is launched on your opponent instead of their monsters. Can only be done when your opponent has no monsters or with a card effect. Example: “And now I’ll hit you with a Direct Attack.”

Effect: The primary function of a card. There are many different types of effects. Example: “The effect of Pot of Greed allows me to draw 2 cards.”

Battle Phase: The part of your turn where you attack with your monsters. Example: “Alright, Battle Phase. I attack with my Blue-Eyes White Dragon.”

Excavate: Checking a certain number of cards from the top of your deck without adding them to your hand. Example: “With Pot of Duality, I excavate 3 cards and add one of them to my hand.”

Synchro: A type of Special Summon involving the tuning of one (or in sometimes more) tuner monsters and 1 or more non-tuner monsters (any monster that is not a Tuner). Example: I use my Tuner Monster Junk Synchron and tune him with my Speed Warrior to Synchro Summon Junk Warrior.”

Tuner: A special type of monster that is required for a Synchro Summon: “Since Red Resonator is on the field, I can use Quillbolt Hedgehog’s effect in the Graveyard and Special Summon him (as there is a Tuner monster on the field)”.

Overlay: A type of Special Summon that is required to summon an XYZ monster. Example: “I Overlay level 4 Gagaga Magician and Level 4 Gogogo Golem to XYZ summon Number 39: Utopia.”

XYZ: A special Type of monster that requires 2 or more monsters of the same level to summon. (See above Example)

MST: An example Initialisation (when a word or series of words is shortened down to letters that are spoken individually). Short for Mystical Space Typhoon. Example: “Now I use MST to destroy that face-down card.”

Deck-Out: When a player can no longer draw cards from their deck. Example: “Since you’ve Decked-Out, I win the Duel automatically.”

Graveyard: Where a card goes once it has been used or destroyed. Typically shortened to ‘Grave’. Example: “Since I have destroyed your monster, it is sent to the Graveyard.”

Banish: When a card is removed from play instead of being sent to the Graveyard. Example: “Due to the effect of Macro Cosmos, your card is banished instead of being sent to the Graveyard.”

And now that I have imparted to you (whoever decided to read this) my knowledge… I bid you adieu.

Thanks for reading!

Megalomaniac

I am a Megalomaniac

A greater purpose in life… Stronger than the rest… I am the best!

I am a Megalomaniac

No matter what… I will not stop trying… I will even come back after dying!

I am a Megalomaniac

I don’t care who you are… I don’t care what you’ll do… Stay out of my way because…

I am a Megalomaniac

If you want to stop me… Then you had better watch your back… This may be the last time you’re seen because…

I am a Megalomaniac

This is where it stops… This is where it ends… If you want to stop me then you’d better try again because…

I am a Megalomaniac

But no matter how you stall me… I won’t give up my pursuit… The pursuit for what I crave…

I am a Megalomaniac

My goal affects everyone… Despite what you might think… I may as well be a God!

I am a Megalomaniac

An obsessive desire for Power… An obsessive desire to use it… No matter what the cost may be…

I am a Megalomaniac!

Megalomaniac: A person who has an obsessive desire for Power. A person exhibiting Megalomania.

Megalomania: An obsession with the exercise of Power. Delusion about one’s own Power or Importance.