Exams at HKUST

[Repost from my old blog] Many people complain about exams at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology – too many, too difficult, too competitive. I will go over the courses I have taken in the first half of my studies there in a course-by-course-manner, and I’ve only included exams that account for at least 20% of the course grade. Exam here means that it is a written test which is held at a specific time with all of the students enrolled in the course present.

Fall 2011 [first semester]

  • ACCT2010 – Principles of Accounting I – 1 Midterm Exam, 2 Quizzes, 1 Final Exam = 4
  • ISOM2500 – Business Statistics – 2 Midterm Exams, 1 Final Exam = 3
  • MATH1003 – Calculus and Linear Algebra – 1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam = 2
  • LANG1410 – Latin and the Roman Empire – 1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam = 2
  • LABU2050 – Language for Business – No Exams
  • MGMT2010 – Organizational Behavior – 1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam = 2

Spring 2012 [second semester]

  • ECON2103 – Principles of Microeconomics – 1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam = 2
  • ISOM2010 – Information Systems – 1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam = 2
  • ISOM2700 – Operations Management – 2 Midterm Exams, 1 Final Exam = 3
  • MARK2010 – Marketing Management – 2 out of 3 Quizzes = 2
  • FINA2303 – Financial Management – 1 Midterm Exam, 1 Final Exam = 2
  • SOSC2740 – Gender and Society – 2 Quizzes = 2
  • GBUS2010 – Global Business Case Analysis – No Exams

Fall 2012 [third semester, including winter course]

  • ISOM3710 – Management Science – 2 Midterm Exams, 1 Final Exam = 3
  • MGMT2120 – Business, Society and Individual – No Exams
  • GBUS3020 – Global Business Case Analysis – No Exams
  • HUMA2635 – Cultural Diversity in China – 1 Final Exam = 1
  • HUMA1000 – Cultures and Values – No Exams
  • UROP1100 – Research – No Exams
  • ISOM4740 – Enterprise Resource Management – 1 Final Exam = 1

If we look at the average of these figures we can get a clearer picture:

  • Semester 1:  13 exams in total, 2.2 exams per course, or 2.6 exams per course that has any exams.
  • Semester 2: 13 exam in total, 1.9 exams per course, or 2.2 exams per course that has any exams.
  • Semester 3: 5 exams in total, .83 exams per course (excluding UROP1100), or 1.7 exams per course that has any exams.
  • Total: 31 exams in total, 1.6 exams per course, or 2.2 exams on average among those courses which have exams.

But what does that really tell us? Are there too many exams? Does it hinder how we learn? I’d be glad to hear your comments 🙂

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