Category Archives: exams

Exams, and the End of Term 1

Ok, so I have been inactive since last week. Life in ISB can be called many things, but boring isnt one of them. There was just so much happening that it was enough just to keep up with the schedule. We had the student body elections for the various posts, lots and lots of assignments falling due since it was the last week of the term, the standard classes, and the pre-final exam jitters affecting everyone who could be seen trying to make some sense of the course-packs 😀
We had final assignments for the term due by Friday and saturday, had to finish those on time AND get down to studying for the exams from Monday.

Of course, we had the elections for the student body and the various councils as well. There was the soapbox in Khemka (the auditorium) where each candidate got 3 minutes to present his manifesto and vision for what he hoped to achieve if elected. There were some good ones, and some so-so types, but the one thing I have to admire everyone up there for is the guts it took to get on stage and give the presentation to the whole student body/those who turned up anyway 😛 We had some clear front-runners for some of the posts, and a bit of a mixed bag in others. Hope they all do a good job 🙂

The one good thing about the course in ISB as compared to earlier studies I have experienced is that though we do study a lot faster than most other people (it IS after all a 1 year MBA, and we cover the same course as other students in Wharton etc cover in 3 months in 6 weeks in contrast), the course grading is much more progressive rather than your score just depending on the final exam and the term-work grade. The final grade is split between a lot of things, and it varies from course to course and even depending on the particular professor teaching the course. In addition to the mid-terms and the finals, we have in-class quizzes, marks for class participation, take-home quizzes, assignments etc etc in the different subjects. Mid-terms and finals have equal weightage as well, so it keeps us studying. The workload is anyway such that you just cannot skip something like in undergrad and expect to make up for it a day before the exam, not too much anyway 😉
So we had the exams on Monday and tuesday, some of which turned out to be easier than we were expecting/dreading. Exams done, we were out of the college campus. We went out, had dinner, saw a late night movie (Angels and Demons), and were back in college by 2, by which time the party was just getting started. Which some of us (me guilty) just went back and crashed, I heard that the party went on till 5 in the morning. Thats another thing abut ISB, every possible occasion is used for parties to chill out and just have fun 🙂 I remember doing an eco group assignment while a party was going on in the apartment below us, till 6 in the morning!!!
The last two days have been pretty chilled out, not much to do. Classes for term 2 begin form Monday. Some people took the opportunity to get out of hyderabad and back home, those who live close by anyway, other have workshops scheduled for the LDP (Leadership Development Programme) which is a 1 credit course. The rest of us are pretty much chilling out, finding doing nothing a welcome change from the running around of the last few weeks.
We have already picked up the big fat coursepacks for the next term, though I couldnt bring myself to open them up, yet. Time enough for that once classes start. Just trying to get organised and chilling till Sunday. The worst part, my section has classes in the morning slot this term, which means classes at 8!!!! Have to get used to waking up early, this term at least.

In other updates, the various visits continue. We had the head of Pepsi India, Mr. Sanjeev Chadha, and his Mrs. Radha Chadha on campus last to last week (Covered here). It was an interesting discussion on Pepsi India’s vision and his own B-school experience (IIM-A) and the contrast with B-schools today.
Theres also the International Conference on Entrepreneurship today and most of tomorrow. I am personally looking forward to hearing Mr. Som Mittal, the President of NASSCOM, who will be going on stage tomorrow.
To cap it off, we have a panel discussion on the 8th of June which will include, among others, the MD for NVIDIA India, Mr. JA Chowdary. Being a tech freak, I am looking forward for a chance to interact with him as well.

Well, thats pretty much a wrap up of like in the last week and the coming one as well. I hope to write on some more stuff in the coming days. Lets see if I can manage the time for the same 😉

Mid-Terms Ahoy!!!!!!

MBA @ ISB = 12 months = 8 terms = 45 days/term = exams every 22.5 days (unlike engg. college, midterms are important here since marks of mid terms make up anything from 35-50% of the final grade)

Its been almost 3 weeks of full time classes/studies here in ISB and so predictably, its time for the first exams, the Term-1 mid-term. Since these are the first exams everyone is giving over here, people are pretty high strung and worried over what sort of exam we will get and what sort of grades as well. Relative grading is another sword hanging over everyones head, since by definition itself, someone has to come last.

This weekend, all the previously well attended club presentations on Technology/Entrepreneurship saw empty halls with like 5-7 attendees. Predictably, all the meetings were rescheduled to next week when the attendance will be better. Even the traditionally well attended dunkings have been affected. We had a section dunking yesterday where hardly 20 people turned up, which is like a new low record.

The LRC (= Learning Resource Center == Library) is seeing record attendance, especially considering that most of the reference books are really expensive foreign authors only available there. There have even been reports of people trying to sleep in the LRC at night to cut down on the time it would take them to go back to the rooms. 😛

Should we spend all our time getting worried about exams? As people like to say, ‘It Depends’. And that too on what your priorities in life are. A lot of people are in the rat race trying for the dean’s list, to try for the top consulting companies when they visit campus for placements. Is this something that should be encouraged? I believe this is a personal call which everyone has to take. Do I want to spend the next year stuck to my books and missing out on all the things an MBA at ISB can give me other than pure studies? Or should I try to balance the two and trust in the fact that doing other things which I find interesting and getting to know various people and their experiences will be more helpful to me in the long run? Thats the question everyone of us here at ISB need to ask ourselves.

This has turned out be a long and rambling blog post by now.

PS: Wondering which category I come in? The very fact that here I am a day before the exam writing a blog may prejudice you, but now I am off, gotta hit those books! 😀