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2014 exam feedback
Hi all

First of all, I wish to thanks for the excellent forum and a lot of people helpful here especially PJW, Peter, Reuben, Dorothy and so on.

I took the exam Mod 2 and 3 this year.

Mod 2,
-the stopping headway calculation is tough for me. I could not have sufficient time to think and provide the answer. I thought that after I finish the layout, I will have some time left but it did not. So just did only part a and b not c

-brake rate is changed from 0.5 m/s/s to 0.7 m/s/s and train length becomes 230 m

-i think the timetable headway is about 5 min as I found out there are 12 trains per hour (taking worst case) and I divided 5 by 2 because freight trains and stopping trains dominate the headway so let's say 2.5 min. This will be ok with 3-aspect signalling with 40% contingency if i did not miss anything.

-the layout asked us to draw the double slip points. I didn't do it well.

-i designed 4-aspect signalling at platform and tried to manage 3 aspect in the rest of the layout and failed to give 2 aspect signalling at the terminal staion.

-I took too much time to find the consistency distance for signal spacing and finally did not finish the added on signal indicators. Just did some parts.

-I had 5 min to provide the route box before time's up.

I am not sure I can pass with high marks as I wish. However, if there is no big shock, I should pass it.

Mod 3
-I did the control table question with confidence. I think I am good with that.

-Aspect sequence was my attempt with 3-aspect signalling. All distance for signal separation can be covered with BD.

-last question I chose is about a route proving before the signal is clear(question 6) as I remember. It is 2-page long for the answer but not sure I can make the examiner happy though I have read the question carefully.

If everything is what I expect, i should be ok for mod3 but not sure again.

Now it would be great if I know the result before next year.

Do you have any idea? When unofficial result can be given ?

Thanks and I will take a break and start it again soon maybe next month Smile)

Best regards Arnut
I took Mod2 this year.
I agree the stopping headway seemed tough, but after reading through it several times I think it was relatively simple calculation. I may have misunderstood and I know I could have done better(lack of time, thought of something afterwards). My feeling is that it was a poor question on the grounds that it could not be explained concisely. I'd like to know how many candidates attempted it as at least one in Birmingham said they didn't.

I saw that the brake rate is changed from 0.5 m/s/s to 0.7 m/s/s - that will find out who assumes from who reads carefully!

I'm not 100% sure about the double slips. Interestingly that's the first time they've appeared in about a dozen years.

I managed most of the layout but not quite all - some of one main line was incomplete and I know there are areas which would have been better if I'd checked them over again but no time.

I think I'll have done enough to pass; much credit to PJW and others for their valuable assistance.

I sat 2, 3 and 5 yesterday.

Mod 2, I felt the calculation was OK, the layout was huge and I didn't manage my time as good as I should have, the changes to the calculation, the linespeeds 175km/h and the doubleslip points threw me abit and probably cost me 10 mins that I needed at the end to complete the route boxes and track circuits that I didn't get finished. I managed to get down the signals, indicators, shunt signals and I think the majority of what I did fitted the required braking distance and was relevant. However I only got a few routes entered in the route boxes and I ran out of time to mark any track circuits although I did position most IRJ's. If I pass 2 it will be by the skin of my teeth and i'm not that confident. Better time management and I think I would be very confident.

Mod 3 I had made the decision before the exam that I was not going to do the tables and was going to do the written answers this was because of last years 12% pass rate, I answered the aspect sequence question, the route normalisation and level crossing questions. I think I answered all 3 reasonably, Reuben covered the aspect sequence and route normalisation with the AST course I did earlier in the year and I had revised level crossings pretty intensively plus i work with them! 3 is probably the exam I am most confident of passing although you never know I might not have gotten out what the examiners want.

Mod 5 I answered the points,signalling cable and level crossing questions, I think i answered the points and signalling cable questions reasonably well although there were a few things I think could have added that I thought off after. I think with the level crossing question I missed some simple info that I should have put down about the risks facing open and half barrier crossing and its really annoying me as I work with barriers practically weekly. I'm thinking I have did enough to pass but again you never know what the examiner will be looking for.

Anyway everyone goodluck and I hope we all pass!
I took the M3 exam this year and straight from the off, I was somewhat suprised that this year there was no explicit question on ATO or ATP in comparison to other years. I remember attending the Exam Review back in Feb and one bit of feedback posed to the Mod3 examiner was that recently Mod3 has contained many questions which relate to newer type of systems that everyone may not have had experience of working with - maybe the examiner has taken this point onboard and revisited the amount of theory questions that relate to new and novel systems that may not be very well practised around the world!

I answered 3 theory questions on Route Release, Inputs to Automatic Route Setting and Temporary Speed Restrictions relating to engineering works. Not sure if my answers were widespread enough and covered the whole system - i think i was too focussed on specific points and went of on a tangent quite freqently - so overall not expecting a Pass as I did not prepare very well this year.

I was tempted by the Level crossing question but then i saw the bit in the question which required you to discuss why the level crossing described may have been chosen and not other types - and i do not have enough knowledge of all the types of level crossings and how they work so i played it safe.

Anyway - one thing i tried to do with this exam is read every single bit of the question and Mod 3 questions always usually have abit of a scene setting part at the beginning of the question which is there for a reason so i tried to refer my answer back to the specific example they were talking about.

Will have to wait and see what happens but I'm not very confident on this one....
I believe that there are far more entries then usual this year, particularly module 2.
Therefore I think it is highly unlikely that the results will be out before January 2015.

I was at the IRSE this evening and saw one of the module 2 examiners (and indeed one of the module 3 examiners) and mentioned what candidates felt re the wording of the headway question and change of the brake rate.

I also spoke to Peter re the "new look" of the Forum. Apparently it is unintentional result of a "software upgrade"- where have you heard of that before?
When he gets a chance to figure out what has caused it, he'll attempt to correct to improve the visibility of the text which is now hard to read on the dark green background. He did point out that he deferred upgrading to the new version until after the exam, so had mitigated the risk!
(08-10-2014, 10:55 PM)PJW Wrote: I also spoke to Peter re the "new look" of the Forum. Apparently it is unintentional result of a "software upgrade"- where have you heard of that before?
When he gets a chance to figure out what has caused it, he'll attempt to correct to improve the visibility of the text which is now hard to read on the dark green background. He did point out that he deferred upgrading to the new version until after the exam, so had mitigated the risk!

Not quite all fixed, but speaking to PJW this evening gave me an idea for a temporary fix which would improve things in the short term. Will try to get these pages working properly shortly.

On the exam numbers, I understand applications were up over 75% on previous years. I think we will need to recruit some more contributors here if that sort of number is going to continue.


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