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Thread: High Distinctions

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    High Distinctions

    Hi, for those that have a WAM of 85+ and generally receive HDs how are you able to manage this and achieve these marks? Could someone please provide me with some tips, specifically for a first year student? Thanks

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    Member RyanT7's Avatar
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    Re: High Distinctions

    What course are you doing ?

    For the most part, maintaining a 85 WAM will result you in studying quite a lot and you won't have as much time on the side to work or do social events

    Don't think you'll find many people with that WAM, and those who do, are generally in areas where the answer is definite and they are very good at what they do ( i.e math ).

    I have just over a distinction WAM, so can't give you much advice besides the fact that marks dont matter as much as you think in university

    usually 65 + is the cut off for screening and 75+ and higher for very few certain job fields ( maybe investment banking etc )

    Work experience and EC's are quite important too, as well as just being a well rounded individual

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    Re: High Distinctions

    What are you studying and what uni?
    Law? Then you'll have an incredibly difficult time getting a HD average
    Comm/engo/sciences etc - much more achievable but still requires significant work ethic (will put you in top 5% if your cohort at least).

    I had a hd ave for comm and d average for law at usyd but still managed to work 2 jobs (PASS tutor + Research Asssitant - about 15 - 20 hours weekly). However I definitely was not a social butterfly!
    Last edited by RishBonjour99; 17 Dec 2018 at 2:07 AM.
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    Re: High Distinctions

    1. Readings (do them unless it is really obvious that they aren't needed)
    2. Chase the marks, even if its worth 0.5% put effort into it.
    3. Go to any PASS/PAL or extra study sessions
    4. Have a calendar where you write up all due dates, and look at it regularly.
    5. Keep track of your marks on a spreadsheet, so that you can see which subject needs more work put into it in order to achieve higher marks.
    6. If past papers are available used them, and try to go to a consultation (lecturer/tutor) with worked solutions so you can get feedback how to approach the problem.
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    Re: High Distinctions

    I study advanced maths with an HD average.

    - keep on top of your work
    - attend all classes (if possible)
    - make sure you understand the content to the best of your ability
    - start assignments early
    - give yourself a week to prepare for exams and quizzes, and at least 2-3 weeks for the final. For the final, I tend to redo all of the tutorial problems throughout the semester (takes me about 1-1.5 weeks), then do all of the practice/past papers available. Making a schedule really helps with this
    - don't let disappointments/mistakes deter you (I probably nearly failed a lab exam for a third year stats course and still ended up getting 95 for it)
    - have time to yourself each night to relax. I almost never study past 8pm, and during the first half of a semester, I pretty much never study past 6pm. I also never study at uni (apart from attending lectures and tutorials), even though I go 5 days a week and stay in uni on average 5 hours a day. I spend my breaks in between classes chilling with friends, but that's a personal preference, and many diligent students like to use that time to study.
    - make revision notes at the end of each week. I like to handwrite mine (though I do study maths)

    The amount of effort you need to put in and what you need to do for an HD varies between courses. And you'll find certain courses easier than others, so distribute your time and effort accordingly.

    Also, I think HDs are much easier for first year courses (slightly ironic since I do better in 2nd and 3rd year courses). Particularly if you need to take units that have high enrolment.

    If it really matters to you, it is usually easier to get HDs in non-advanced classes. However, I'd personally recommend to go for advanced classes anyway, since they're more helpful in the long run.

    Edit: I also had an HD average in an Arts degree, where I studied mostly economics and one or two philosophy courses, so the tips above extend well beyond maths/stats/comp sci. Although now I'm just flexing, which is the only thing my Arts degree is good for now that I've dropped it after 2.5 years
    Last edited by sida1049; 17 Dec 2018 at 10:38 AM.

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    Re: High Distinctions

    Quote Originally Posted by RyanT7 View Post
    What course are you doing ?

    For the most part, maintaining a 85 WAM will result you in studying quite a lot and you won't have as much time on the side to work or do social events

    Don't think you'll find many people with that WAM, and those who do, are generally in areas where the answer is definite and they are very good at what they do ( i.e math ).

    I have just over a distinction WAM, so can't give you much advice besides the fact that marks dont matter as much as you think in university

    usually 65 + is the cut off for screening and 75+ and higher for very few certain job fields ( maybe investment banking etc )

    Work experience and EC's are quite important too, as well as just being a well rounded individual
    This +1

    I was able to do it for Software Engineering, but that be said, I have programmed since year 10, and was naturally always good at math, when choosing your degree ask yourself if you see yourself doing this in the future.

    Discipline and work ethic is needed, if you are not planning on transferring to a better degree, you don't really need to worry about first year WAM or GPA.

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    Re: High Distinctions

    Yeah as mentioned below, it really depends on what you study. There are certain subjects which are extremely easy to get D/HDs, and others where everyone's just praying for a pass and anything more is a bonus. I averaged D/HD for my math subjects, C/D for my physics, and P/C for my engineering ones. It's generally a lot easier to get a HD in areas like math, than it is in courses like engineering (I had one course where the highest mark in the cohort was 84, so nobody got a HD).

    Keep in mind that the mentality of getting good grades is very different between uni and HS. In the HSC, you're all competing for ranks to get an ATAR. In uni everyone's just trying to help each other out and get through the course lol. The number of people that continue staying motivated after first year first semester just drops like a rock. As also mentioned, work experience is worth significantly more than good grades. I knew people who had HD WAMs but struggled to find internships. In contrast, those with C/D WAM's but had work experience had no trouble finding internships.
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    Re: High Distinctions

    Adv Computing and Med Science at Usyd

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    Re: High Distinctions

    Quote Originally Posted by RishBonjour99 View Post
    What are you studying and what uni?
    Law? Then you'll have an incredibly difficult time getting a HD average
    Comm/engo/sciences etc - much more achievable but still requires significant work ethic (will put you in top 5% if your cohort at least).

    I had a hd ave for comm and d average for law at usyd but still managed to work 2 jobs (PASS tutor + Research Asssitant - about 15 - 20 hours weekly). However I definitely was not a social butterfly!
    I’m doing Adv Computing and Med Science at Usyd

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    Re: High Distinctions

    Got a hd avg for finance/actuarial @ mq.

    1.Enjoy what you're doing
    2. Find a study method/lifestyle that works for you. Be determined to always challenge yourself
    3. Reward yourself
    4. Repeat
    3rd Year Applied Finance/Actuarial Studies @ MQ
    GPA 6.77 WAM 87%
    Part 1's: CT1,CT2, CT3,1/2 CT5,CT7

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