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I understand that the IRSE have sent to all candidates a feedback form which request information regarding the student's view on various elements of the Study DVD, split per module.

Whether you think it good, bad or indifferent, please take the time to give your feedback as it could be a way to influence things and make better for others in subsequent years. Absence of feedback is likely to be interpreted as laziness and apathy.
I hope you all had a good day yesterday. I think there were a few surprises in the way some of the questions (particularly Mod 2) were asked and no track circuit question in Mod 5! Please let us know what you thought!

Peter
Hello Peter,

Yes for me too the surprise was the question on theoretical headway for 3 and 4 aspect signalling which I believe is the first time the exams have asked for this (as far as I know since 2002). From practice of past years' exams, this part could have been completed fairly quickly using Newton's laws of motion to determine stopping and non stopping headway. This new requirement required a few minutes thought (which ate into the 10 mins reading time which for me was to have been used in studying the layout).

I derived this theoretical headway substituting braking distance (2 and 1.5 times braking distance for DGR) to derive the theoretical headway using HW time (now an unknown) x 120 km/h = reaction distance + DGR + overlap + train length. As there was no headway requirement as such, the spacing of the signals was based on junctions that need to be protected. I used a combination of 3 and 4 aspect signalling for the Main and as there was no upper limit to signal spacing usually derived from headway was prepared to schedule them to 1.33S (S being braking distance) or 0.67S.

The other part rquired working out the roundtrip running time (inclusive of dwell times and layover) of a single line train working from B to E again the first time this had been asked although this has been covered in PJW's Study Pack Appendix G. This I could do but felt could have been faster with practice (but never did because it had never been asked before). To be fair to the examiner, he did try to help minimise time by placing the stations equidistant.

So my time taken for the calculations was a bit longer by another 10 minutes at least I think.

Managed to do varying degrees signal positioning on the mainline with transition from 4 aspect to 3 aspect signalling, the freight yard, trap points, numbering of signals and naming of track circuits, a bit of each to demonstrate to the examiner but could not complete all because of a lack of time. For single line working I used No Signaller Token although with hindsight Tokenless Block could also have worked.

For me this year has been my best attempt so far but whether I can do well enough to pass is another matter.

Alex
The absence of a TC calc in mod 5 should not have been a surprise, neither should the rather different from usual aspect sequece question in mod 3, since these had been forewarned in the Exam Review in January of which there are notes here. I can see that the mod 2 would have been rather more of a jolt when first looking at the paper which barely changes from year to year.

I am particularly interested to have any more comments in the immediate aftermath of the exam; I am meeting some others in just over a week to discuss how people from different backgrounds and experience may have viewed the questions set. I can only guess at this, so to have got real feedback from real candidates would be immensely useful.
Either publicly through posting in this thread, or privately by PM / email as several have been contacting me in the run up to the exam in order to preserve anonymity.

Even if you post openly under your own name, your comment wll not affect the marking of your individual paper in any way; however if it relates to a potential misunderstanding of what a question meant or what was needed to answer it, then I might let the generic information be known so that when the examiners are reviewing their marking they could at least be aware that such an issue exists. Hencevery useful to feed me stuff now and this would also before the memory fades.


(07-10-2012, 02:02 PM)Peter Wrote: [ -> ]I hope you all had a good day yesterday. I think there were a few surprises in the way some of the questions (particularly Mod 2) were asked and no track circuit question in Mod 5! Please let us know what you thought!

Peter
felt the exams were mostly ok. did 1,3,5 and 7. Don't think I did particuarly well on Mod 7 but 1 and 3 went ok.

My only real surprise was the level crossing qestion on Mod 5. Exected to to be based around a MCB or AHB but to me it read like it wanted details of a MKCB-On call. Not a very common crossing but I had a go at it I know others answered with regards to an MCB and a AHB so feedback and that question from the 'exam board' would be appreciated.
Well the examiners did certainly hint strongly that it would be unlikely that a standard level crossing question would be asked again this year, so perhaps should not have been too surprising.

I think that I might have made the assumption that it was a private road and described motorised user work gates.

However it could actually be an open crossing, probably protected with lights.

I suppose that a CCTV monitored level crossing where the barriers are usually down and only opened when a road user requests to cross would also have fitted the description, but I don't think that was really what was wanted.

Certainly an AHBC does not seem a sensible option to describe.

Not a question I think I would have chosen- feel that I'd have been struggling talking about interface options with the train driver.

A useful summary of UK crossing types is on NR web site . You can also find some videos showing road users with a death wish.

(08-10-2012, 02:26 PM)Rich Wrote: [ -> ]felt the exams were mostly ok. did 1,3,5 and 7. Don't think I did particularly well on Mod 7 but 1 and 3 went ok.

My only real surprise was the level crossing question on Mod 5. Expected to to be based around a MCB or AHB but to me it read like it wanted details of a MKCB-On call. Not a very common crossing but I had a go at it I know others answered with regards to an MCB and a AHB so feedback and that question from the 'exam board' would be appreciated.
I did the same as RIch and to be honest I thought the papers were quite fair. Change to aspect sequence chart no real surprise but may have thrown people. My banker points machine drawing for 5, nowhere to be seen, I disagree with that I don't see the problem with asking a similar points description question and vary the knowledge based questions to determine whether candidate learned off a schematic or can demonstrate knowledge.