Course Over

It has been one hell of a stressful month. My goodness gracious! There were definitely some downs and I got to the point a few times were I didn’t think I’d make it. But I persevered! I picked myself up and moved onwards. My second last course, Power Supplies was quite tricky and I just passed the practical exam, nearly failed it. I was fine with the theory, it was the fault finding that tripped me up some.

Moving onto Multistage terrified me. I was excited to be in the final leg, but at the same time worried I would fail miserably. We were no longer fault finding using Lab-Volt but rather and actual black and white tv (with was as old as me, 30). The theory wasn’t too bad, but oh the fault finding… I struggled so hard with it. The main issue for me was that it wasn’t really introduced well. Or at least I didn’t think it was. The practise exam I pretty much bombed with a pathetic 60%. For those of you unaware, anything below a 70% is a fail for us. So you could say I was really flipping nervous about going into the actual exam the next morning.

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The final practical went incredibly well for me. I did way better than I had expected. I was nervous about a couple faults, but for the most part I felt confident. And when I got my final grade of 96% I was elated! I felt on top of the world! I wish I could have said the same for a couple of other guys on my course. We had two fails. Unfortunately for the one it was his final strike and that meant recourse. The other guy, since it was his first exam fail was given the opportunity to do a retest the next morning. IT would seem luck was not on his side as he failed it again and will be recoursed. It’s really sad to see them both go so close to the end. They were both good students.

This morning we had the dreaded knowledge retention test. It’s 50 questions based on EVERYTHING we’ve learned in the past 8 months. I was terrified. There’s just so much content to study and know.

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Granted a good chunk we should be very familiar with because they’re concept we’ve been using in multiple courses. But then you just don’t know how in depth they’ll go with certain things. And since there’s a number of different versions of the retention test, talking to people who’ve graduated is nearly pointless. Some versions are theory heavy, some have more calculations, some have more fault-finding related questions etc…

After I finished, I felt so unsure. There were a few questions were I was split. Waiting in the canteen to find out the results were nerve-wracking. So much was riding on this. If I failed I would still have a retest, but I don’t know how well I would have done if that were the case. However, needless to say I passed! When I saw my mark I wanted to jump up and shout YATTA!

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It was like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders! All my hard work, all my studying had paid off. Now all that’s left is to do our graduation parade and then head back to Borden, when I’ll start my next course a few days later!

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Vacay Time!

The last week before my Christmas break had been insanely stressful. I could punch every person who said our last course was supposed to be easy. It was not; at least not for me.  There wasn’t a lot of theory, but the practical was a struggle for me. But I managed to understand it in the end.

I believe it was Tuesday when we began to do fault finding. That was a bad day for me. It wasn’t sinking in for me. I got so flustered and frustrated to the point where I just wanted to go hide and cry. I  didn’t want to fail. While most of my coursemates completed 10 faults or more completed by the end of the day, I had a measly 5. So that night I studied the schematics and theory some more.

The next day I was doing a bit better, and with some help from my instructor everything began to make more sense. By the end of the day I had done 16 faults and was definitely feeling a lot better. I spent pretty much the whole night studying my tush off. I had both my written and practical exams the next morning.

The written exam I didn’t feel good about. There were a lot of questions where I felt a bit unsure about. But I did a lot better than I had expected. Even scoring higher than some other people who normally do well! That was a major confidence booster. I was feeling a whole lot better about doing the practical.

The practical went a lot smoother. It only took me 40 minutes to complete my 5 faults, which is impressive considering on our first day of fault finding it took me probably close to 2 hours to do 5 faults! I passed with flying colours!

I’m almost half way though my Christmas break, which is sad. I wish I had more time at home. It hasn’t really felt like Christmas this year. I blame mother nature being drunk. Let’s see earlier this week it was actually warmer here than it was in some parts of California. For those of you unfamiliar where I live, normally at this time of year we have snow and are sitting below zero.

Christmas eve was spent at my parents with my husband. Instead of doing the traditional turkey or ham we grilled steaks! It was delicious! Felt a little strange at first but it was grilling weather! Today we’re doing the big Polish Christmas dinner with my husbands family. There will be lots of yummy foods! Tomorrow we’re driving up to Trenton to visit my Brother and his family, doing Christmas #3 with them. Then it’s back home for a few more days.

Since coming home I’ve finally sink my teeth into Fallout4. It’s better than I had expected. I’m not big on FPS games, mainly because they stress me out a lot. But playing with my hubby right next to me has eased my stress. Mainly because I can throw the controller at him if I’m starting to feel really stressed, lol! And he also offers a lot of moral support by coaching me through what I need to be doing.

This may be my last entry for year, so Marry Christmas and Happy New Year!

I’ll Be Home For Christmas

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It’s that wonderful time of year once again! I can’t wait to get back home for a couple of weeks and spend some much needed quality time with my hubby and family. I wish I could say I have most of my Christmas shopping done, but that would be a flat out lie. I have a couple things, but not much. It’s hard because I’m still relatively far away from shopping areas and with being on course I have other priorities like studying and passing my classes.

I booked my train home last week. Thank you Via Rail for your Black Friday deals! All fares were reduced plus I also got an additional discount. I went with Business Class because I can and I wanted to spoil myself a little. Honestly, if you can, choose Business class! It’s worth every cent! More leg room, meals and drinks all included. Priority boarding, access to the business class lounges where there’s more free drinks/food. It’s a pleasant experience overall.

I had a rather difficult exam yesterday morning. I felt so confident going in and then I opened the exam book and suddenly I felt like Jon Snow.

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The problem stems from how wordy the questions are. There were a lot of trick questions. Most exams are like that and it’s incredibly frustrating. I know the subject matter, it’s just gah! The way they word the questions could drive you up the wall! My other issue with the exam is that there were questions on there about stuff we hardly talked about in class. So that gets a little annoying.

We had our practical exam this morning and again I felt pretty good about it before hand. I did really well on the practise exam the day before but my goodness! The first 2 faults were BRUTAL. I got the second one wrong, which I had a feeling would happen. Given the symptoms and comparing the readings to my nominals, it was hard to determine where the fault actually was. From the sounds of it a lot of my course-mates struggled with the first 2 faults. The last 3 were a breeze. At least for me anyways. But still, afterwards I was stressing so much!

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It’s especially stressful having to sit in a room for over an hour just waiting to find out if you passed or failed. Then everyone starts to discuss the exam and you start to second guess your answers. It’s just a downwards spiral! I was freaking out in my head. What if I failed and had to do a retest? What if I failed the retest? How far back would they recourse me? Everyone is different, some people get lucky and only go back a course or two. Others aren’t that lucky. There’s a girl who just failed out of amplifiers (approx 3-4 months into POET) and is being sent all the way back to the very beginning.

Supposedly they send you back to where they feel you began to struggle. But each case is different and they look at a number of things other than your marks, like your attitude, whether you’re staying for extra help when it’s offered, etc… But seeing as this would be my first fail, would I be able to get on the course right after mine? Or would they send me further back? I’ve been here for nearly 6 months, I con’t think I could handle doing all the all over again.

Thankfully I passed. I did get the second fault wrong. I wanted to argue it because based on my symptoms and reading, they wouldn’t have lead me to where the actual fault was. But I didn’t want to fight it. I didn’t want to argue. I took my passing grade as it was. I was just so relieved. No more stressing! At least until my next set of exams next week.