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Only 28%?

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After the joy of my TMA result yesterday I did some mental maths to work out how close I was to 'passing' the first part of H817.

And in doing so learned I only needed to get 20% in TMA03 to pass the continuous assessment part - and if I manage that I don't even need to bother with TMA04!!!

And that got me thinking about TMA03. The group work and project is so hard on lots of levels and yet it still only counts for 28% of the grade. I can see some reason behind this. Group work is often 'unfair' with some people contributing much more than others and even where the amount of contribution is even the quality may be vastly unequal. We all get the same mark for the group work component unless someone fails to contribute at all or that their contribution was sufficiently low that the tutor awards them a lower mark. Awarding several people a mark which was only earned by one or two is an inherent risk. Therefore - making the essay component of the assignment worth 72% allows appropriate differentiation to take place.

But I have worried, and stressed, and tinkered and toiled on the group project and barely done anything on the personal part. I can see that the effort for both parts of the assignment will be almost exactly inverse to the proportion of the marks.

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The Return of the (Dreaded) TMA02

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Edited by Anna Greathead, Saturday, 25 May 2019, 18:57

I was actually at a National Trust tea room when my WhatsApp started to buzz with the news of the TMA02 results being out. This could have gone either way - I could reward myself with a lovely cream tea if I did well, or I could console myself with a lovely cream tea if I didn't do well!

I couldn't get my feedback on my mobile phone but I could log in and get my score..... and I did well! So much better than I was expected - a full 20% higher than I was braced for. Celebratory cream tea it was!

I'd found TMA02 hard work - I had a good idea but I found it hard to demonstrate a good theoretical grounding for it and had struggled a LOT with the word count. I understand that the OU don't want to make their tutors mark 10,000 word essays but sometimes the word limit is so restrictive that keeping within in is only possible at the cost of good examples, ideas and quotes.

I got home and immediately got my feedback. In light of the word count issue I was someone bemused to find many suggestions for extra things I should have discussed or points I could have developed further! Absolutely no comments to indicate which bits were superfluous! OU marking protocols are clearly devoid of irony!

But either way it's been good. I calculated that I now have 17.64% of the 40% I need to pass H817 and 35.28% of the 40% I need to pass the OCAS. That is not a bad place to be in when I have only completed 21% of the overall work and 42% of the OCAS marks available. 

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