I had mentioned on my previous blog that I would share my experiences with the first-year remote group project. Unlike previous first years who would have worked on building the ‘EEE Bug’, this year the nature of the group project was completely transformed and the cohort was given a choice between designing an analogue music synthesiser, designing a CPU with computational abilities and programming a circuit simulator package in C++. My two teammates and I (each of one of us in completely different time zones, with the maximum difference being 6 hours!) decided on the option of designing a general-purpose CPU on Quartus Prime, with the ability to execute a vast majority of computational algorithms.
Work and assessments at Imperial are continuous, but completing the final summer exams does feel like a milestone. Ever since my frantic air travel from London to Jakarta, worries, and concerns regarding the future of the summer exams were indeed the forefront concern in my mind. The only indication given in the initial weeks was that the exams were to be “remote, formal and written”. My daily morning ritual was (and still is) to check my phone and scroll through the email inbox to find out whether the daily update emails were of any relevance to me.
Nature and Style of the Exams
Then came a series of emails from the EEE Department regarding the style and nature of the exams and for most modules (Mathematics, Signals & Communications, Analysis & Design of Circuits, Digital Electronics & Computer Architecture):
- The exam papers would be most similar to what we would’ve received under normal exam hall conditions
- The exam paper would be timed for the same duration as a normal written exam would have been for that module.
Back home in my international school in Indonesia, things were really different from Imperial in many ways. One of the most striking differences was the reputation of owning a Macbook. Would anyone here at Imperial even believe that my school in 2015 had actually proposed a rule “strongly encouraging” (practically imposing) the use of a Macbook as opposed to any other device? A lot of parents actually complained against this new policy and drafted petitions against this imposition and as a result, the school silently softened its stance. Nevertheless, my school has been recognized as an Apple Distinguished School for two consecutive terms (6 years).