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What should we plan; where and when should it be? - Printable Version

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What should we plan; where and when should it be? - PJW - 02-08-2011

Trying to think ahead for 2012, given a few surprises in 2011.
The Mod1/7 event held in March was extremely popular, so was considerably over-subscribed. Whereas we'd expected that it would have been those who had just discovered that they hadn't passed in 2010 who attended, but this wasn't predominantly the case.

The Mod2/3 event held in July was less popular than previous years, but actually was probably more productive than normal given the lower numbers and the requirement for those who attended to have previously attempted a mock paper.

The Mod 5 event also seems much less popular than similar events in previous years, for reasons that are not known.

Hence would welcome any thoughts re:
a) the modules
b) the location
c) the timing
d) the degree of "exam focus"
that we should aim for next year?


RE: What should we plan; where and when should it be? - SARVESH KUMAR - 17-08-2011

(02-08-2011, 12:49 PM)PJW Wrote: Trying to think ahead for 2012, given a few surprises in 2011.
The Mod1/7 event held in March was extremely popular, so was considerably over-subscribed. Whereas we'd expected that it would have been those who had just discovered that they hadn't passed in 2010 who attended, but this wasn't predominantly the case.

The Mod2/3 event held in July was less popular than previous years, but actually was probably more productive than normal given the lower numbers and the requirement for those who attended to have previously attempted a mock paper.

The Mod 5 event also seems much less popular than similar events in previous years, for reasons that are not known.

Hence would welcome any thoughts re:
a) the modules
b) the location
c) the timing
d) the degree of "exam focus"
that we should aim for next year?

thanks for this information

with regards
Sarvesh kumar


RE: What should we plan; where and when should it be? - MatteoGarosi - 05-10-2011

(02-08-2011, 12:49 PM)PJW Wrote: Hence would welcome any thoughts re:
a) the modules
b) the location
c) the timing
d) the degree of "exam focus"
that we should aim for next year?

Obviously I can opnly provide my opinion on the matter.

a) Mod 1&7 is a must
b) London
c) a full day on a Saturday, May/beginning of June
d) I attended last year event at Atkins. I think it was a really good day if I had to change something maybe I'd like some more focus on specific exam topics.

a) Mod 3
b) London, May
c) a full day on Saturday
d) from introduction to the exam topics to proficiency (well, maybe I am being optimistic)

a) Mod 5
b) London, May
c) a full day on Saturday
d) 1/2 generic lectures on equipment, 1/2 focus on exam questions


RE: What should we plan; where and when should it be? - Jerry1237 - 06-10-2011

@PJW

For me, M1/7 is inaccessable due to the location. Another event (in the Midlands, North/Scottish borders, out West) would be welcomed I am sure.

M2/3 is a good event but not sure the timing was ideal nor was the marketing. Again, multiple locations would be welcomed.

M5, timing was poor for me but very worthwhile in previous years. Not sure this could be repeated too often due to cost and availability of facilities.

* Would suggest that the academic modules are held in multiple locations.
* Events are two months apart and not within three months of the exam.
* Marketing through IRSE News improves.
* Events are always VERY exam-centric.
* Maybe a non-mainline M5 event: NET, LU, Metrolink, DLR?
* A more defined programme.

The events are good and most useful. It is strange why some suffer from poor attendance especially as most the effort put in to host them is voluntary.

Jerry



RE: What should we plan; where and when should it be? - PJW - 06-10-2011

Two sets of good comments; we need a lot more to get a consensus.

There are of course conflicting considerations:

1. Too early in the year means that in general those attending have hardly started studying for the exam and thus events have to be broad introductions rather than particularly exam focussed as most simply not ready for that.

2. Low attendance can mean that event less worth running; the reason why we considerably broadened scope for mod 5 this year and it ironically became an "early intro" session in August- otherwise it would had to be cancelled.

3. Whereas certainly mod 1 could have been repeated elsewhere last year had we been able to find anyone to sponsor the event, with low attendance then running in multiple locations over multiple days would inevitably lower numbers at any one event and result in more work on the volunteers for not much additional gain.

4. There is a limit to how much can be done in a day; Matteo recognises that his ideal vision probably couldn't be achieved in reality. That is why in some events we have deliberately had two streams or allowed a form of pick-and-mix to have some more basic session in parallel with some more exam focussed sessions. This I think has generally worked, but the predominant uptake has generally been for the less exam related sessions.

5. The Signet weekend this year I felt worked in that although we didn't have huge numbers, the filter we applied of having attempted a mock paper meant that it could be very exam focussed. It would probably have been better a couple of weeks earlier so as not to fall into prime holiday time (but there again how many of the clientèle have children at school and therefore need to align their holidays with the more expensive season....), but actually was about right to be close enough to the exam for a mock to be sensible but distant enough from it to have time to make adjustments.

6. A greater gap between events is certainly good on many counts, but then that further restricts where they can be placed in the calendar and will result in less ideal timings. Working back from the exam, if last event were to be the beginning of July, the previous 2 months earlier would place it beginning of May and the one before that the beginning of March. This may be tenable- effectively in 2011 the mod 1 event was in March and the mod2/3 event was in July so if we had managed to get the mod 5 event in May then this would have approximated. Perhaps we could try this in 2012, although there are other things such as the YM International visit to consider.

7. We are certainly already thinking of a non NR mod 5 event- we may be up against the problems of using the training schools on a weekend which ironically seem to be more severe than mid-week. However 2012 may be the year to attempt this.

8. I suppose that a more clearly defined programme is indeed what I am trying to create; hence starting the discussion now. Waiting until the exam review in late January is too late, particularly if intending a very exam focussed event in early March. That was the idea of the event this year, aimed specifically at those who had failed the mod1 2010 exam. There should have been no shortage since the reject rate was 76%; however it seems that few of them registered for the event (or if so insufficiently early before the event became full) and many of those who came had little understanding of what the exam is about, let alone knowledge pertinent to a specific module, so a very exam focussed event was out of the question.

9. It may be we have become too ambitious trying to service everyone's perceived need for something on each of the main modules every year. I must admit that when these events started I was initially thinking of a mod2/3 event in one year and a mod 5 event the next and thus so on alternately (these being the ones which benefit most from non-classroom, the feeling was that the various Study Groups could do the classroom stuff throughout the year and indeed share material via the Forum).

So certainly not easy, but this is why I want to use this thread in order to start the thinking off rather sooner for next year. We may also be against sponsorship issues; the economic climate isn't good and no doubt the IRSE London Convention and Aspect 2012 means that the begging bowl has already been around relevant sources of spare cash!

So a plea to others to have their say and come up with suggestions both of what they would like and also ideas that help these be implemented.





RE: What should we plan; where and when should it be? - Jerry1237 - 07-10-2011

@PJW

The only thing, in my defense, for spreading the modules out, it I feel that the exam should be after a prolonger period of vocational exerience, training and study/practice. I feel the closeness of these events to the exam could be a distraction.

Jerry



RE: What should we plan; where and when should it be? - PJW - 13-10-2011

Actually I couldn't agree more; it is just that perhaps I am more resigned to the actuality of the situation

(07-10-2011, 08:47 AM)Jerry1237 Wrote: @PJW

The only thing, in my defense, for spreading the modules out, it I feel that the exam should be after a prolonger period of vocational exerience, training and study/practice. I feel the closeness of these events to the exam could be a distraction.

Jerry