how does the alpha beta gamma marking system work in Cambridge? Watch

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homoterror
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#1
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Can anybody explain it to me? Do they only use it to decide grade boundaries, or do they actually multiply the marks for complete questions?
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lskdgjsj
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(Original post by homoterror)
or do they actually multiply the marks for complete questions?

I have no idea what that means.


The system is quite simple; it's more of a qualitative than quantitative system of marking. In Classics, for instance, results are often out of 200, but marks above, say, 160 are rarely given, yet people may still produce alpha + work. It's basically a notional system, extending from alpha +, which indicates work that can scarcely be improved upon, to delta, which is more or less complete ignorance. A beta ++ for instance may indicate that a piece of work overall is a moderate 2.i., but there are elements of alpha quality which to some extent make up for the weaknesses. Obviously it may be slightly different in other departments or faculties.
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Alaric
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(Original post by homoterror)
Can anybody explain it to me? Do they only use it to decide grade boundaries, or do they actually multiply the marks for complete questions?
Shouldn't you have worked out the mathmo's hairy marking scheme by now?

Anyway, from conversations with mathmos it seems to be that your questions are graded alpha, beta, gamma etc and then they are translated into points which are then totalled and ranked to make the class order as in other subjects. The weightings mean that you can get all the marks with 5 alphas per paper or something, but you could answer lots to beta standard and do just as well. I think the weightings changed this year, or maybe that was only for catam. Ask on the UCS forums though, they'll know.

I never heard anything about multiplying by number of correct answers, though obviously you'll never get an alpha if you didn't finish it.

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Mop
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Section I questions get you a beta for 8/10 or more. Section II questions get a beta for 10/20 and an alpha for 15/20 or more. If I interpreted what my DoS was saying the other day correctly, class lists are drawn up according to raw mark. Then, people on the boundaries are promoted or demoted according to the number of alpha and betas they recieve (so, if you are initially in the 2i list but have lots and lots of alphas, you may get promoted to a first, whereas if you get a very high raw mark but not many alphas and are on the borderline, you will be demoted.)
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homoterror
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ah I see, so they're not *that* critical. i was kind of under the impression that getting an alpha would suddenly throw you into the hundreds and that without alphas you'd be cast unto third-dom.
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Mop
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Well having lots of alphas tends to be correlated to having lots of marks. As I understood it, if a question is not worthy of a beta or alpha, it will get very few marks (ie. you're unlikely to get 9/20 for a question).
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Willa
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Generally I am under the impression that for a mathmo, it is far more productive to answer a question fully then to start lots of questions and leave them half done. I think that's the whole idea with the Alpha Beta Gamma system - if anyone can finish a question then that's worth much more then doing lots of questions. So if the last part of a question looks long, but you think you know how to do it....it's far better you finish that question then start another one!
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Mop
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There's no such thing as a gamma though :p:
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Camford
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See, that's why you should do CompSci. We use straight forward bit patterns.
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Mop
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Yes, but there is a fairly major downside to your suggestion, which is that you have to actually do compsci :p:
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Camford
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(Original post by Mop)
Yes, but there is a fairly major downside to your suggestion, which is that you have to actually do compsci :p:
There are only 10 kinds of people in the world: Those who understand binary, and those who don't.
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homoterror
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I'd rather goto Oxford than do compsci =P
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Wasp39
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(Original post by Camford)
There are only 10 kinds of people in the world: Those who understand binary, and those who don't.
11 u t - h o w - m 10 n y - 12 11 n - w r i t 15 - 12 r y p t i 12 -

m 15 s s 10 g 15 s - i n - h 15 x ????

If you get that then I worry for your sanity
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Immortal Wombat
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14 10 s i l y - r 14 10 13 10 11 l 14 :p:
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Alaric
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(Original post by PhilipGarsed)
11 u t - h o w - m 10 n y - 12 11 n - w r i t 15 - 12 r y p t i 12 -

m 15 s s 10 g 15 s - i n - h 15 x ????

If you get that then I worry for your sanity
71802065886590

65
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Alaric
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(Original post by Alaric)
71802065886590

65
I think that's right, can't be bothered to turn it into hex or binary though, sorry.

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naelse
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(Original post by PhilipGarsed)
11 u t - h o w - m 10 n y - 12 11 n - w r i t 15 - 12 r y p t i 12 -

m 15 s s 10 g 15 s - i n - h 15 x ????

If you get that then I worry for your sanity
come on, even i got that :rolleyes:
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Camford
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(Original post by Alaric)
71802065886590

65
I knew it ... I am the best thread hijacker there is.
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Camford
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#19
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71 80 20 65 88 65 90

GP AXAZ??? Are we sure we are speaking American here?
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Wasp39
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(Original post by Camford)
I knew it ... I am the best thread hijacker there is.
--. --- / .- .-- .- -.-- .-.-.- / .. .----. -- / - --- --- / - .. .-. . -.. .-.-.- / .. / -.-. .- -. .----. - / .-- --- .-. -.- / --- ..- - / .- .-.. .- .-. .. -.-. .----. ... / -.--.- .. - / -.. --- . ... -. .----. - / -- .- -.- . / ... . -. ... . / .. -. / .... . -..- -.--.-
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