Monday, 3 December 2012

NUS GE3237 Geographies of Migration (Module Review)

For the past two semesters, I've been reviewing all five modules that I took at one go. This sem, I decided to do it a bit differently, so my module reviews will be separated into individual posts instead.

This module is for NUS GE3237 Geographies of Migration.

This sem's GE3237 is taught by Dr Brenda Yeoh. he's a very interesting lecturer, and very very approachable. Even though she's the dean, she doesn't put on any airs. A plus point is that migration is one of her research areas, so she knows the topic very very well.

Assessment consisted of 6 online tutorials with two partnering universities (25%), a group project and a presentation (30%), a 600 words box story (15%), and finals (30%). So as you can see, the percentage is quite evenly spread out across all the different sections.

This mod has the heaviest weightage on tutorials that I'v encountered so far. There were 6 online tutorials in total, but the first one is more like a self-introduction session so it wasn't counted. This means that the 25% was distributed across 5 e-tutorials, 5% each. This is considered really heavy because normally you only have like 10 to 15% for tutorial participation. We were supposed to make 2 posts each week, 300 words each. It wasn't very hard since the word limit is so little, but the difficult part is sounding intelligent with so little words. But it really feels super good to not have to be physically present in school for tutorials.

For the group project, the written report takes up 70% of the 30%. The group consist of 4 to 5 people, and 2 of them will be presenting while the rest will have to answer questions posted by Dr Brenda Yeoh. I really think that there's too little weightage given to this part. 4000 words for like 20% (70% of the 30%) is just too much work for too little marks I feel. The topic was on cosmopolitan possibilities of migrants in Singapore. Quite broad and fun to do. But I kind of feel like Dr Yeoh is too nice. Because the topic is so broad, we couldn't make up our mind on what to do at first. We came up with some suggestions and asked her for comments but I feel like nothing concrete or fruitful came out of the consultation. It's like, she'll keep telling you it's feasible and you should go with what you like, but she didn't actually criticise anything and I feel that in this case, telling us what she DIDN'T like would have pointed us to a clearer path. We had to come back on a Saturday for the presentations but no complains there since we didn't have actual tutorials.

The lectures were held at AS7, this is the part that I really disliked. The classroom was so small and cramped! If you're late, you'll end up sitting in the front row and then the whole lesson you have to keep straining your neck to read off the projector slides. It doesn't help that there were quite a few sessions were she uploaded the notes really late (like before the lesson kind of late), and I ended up going to class without notes. They should seriously get a bigger venue.

Exam questions were quite straightforward, helps that past year papers were available also.

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