Tomorrow I’ll be taking my final exam for the module M255 – Object Oriented Programming with Java. I’ve really enjoyed the module. I had never used Java before and now I think it’s one of my favourite languages that I’ve used.

In preparation for the exam I bought a couple of past exam papers from the OU online shop. I did this last year and I found it really useful. However I have come to discover that the module I did the exam for last year (M263) was an anomaly in that it supplies answers for the exam papers. Most other OU modules do not. Now this is a bit strange. Why take a mock exam if you can’t grade yourself afterwards? You might be really confident about an answer but actually you’re completely wrong.

Now the OU party line is that you can get answers to questions by asking in the module forum or reading back through the literature. The problem is that whenever someone posts in the forum they get a load of conflicting answers just like you see on a popular Stack Exchange question. The difference is that Stack Exchange has a voting system so crap answers are down voted and the best answers are (in theory) voted to the top. And reading back through the unit text sounds good in theory but sometimes you can spend ages looking for a single sentence to answer a one mark question. It’s not really a good use of time when you’re studying part time and trying to fit everything else in. Googling can sometimes be quicker but you can sometimes be marked down for not using the approved method so it’s better to go with the module texts.

So I haven’t done as many mock exams to prep for tomorrow’s exam. I’m fairly confident anyway. It’s nice because a lot of the material is relevant and just sinks in when you’re writing a lot of Java. In the mock exams that I have done I’ve answered everything without too much trouble… although I suppose whether I actually had the right answers is anyone’s guess.