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Hi,

Can someone please explain the concept/benefit of taking more CATS than required...does anyone even do it?? I'm thinking of taking an extra 15 CAT module taking me up to 135 CATS, purely because im interested in doing that module.

When it comes to degree classification, will they discount your extra module or will this be factored into the entire mark awarded, thus allowing me (atleast in theory though I really dont intend to..obviously) **** up in a module??

Sorry if that makes little/no sense, but if someone could help me, it would be much appreciated.

Cheers.

Can someone please explain the concept/benefit of taking more CATS than required...does anyone even do it?? I'm thinking of taking an extra 15 CAT module taking me up to 135 CATS, purely because im interested in doing that module.

When it comes to degree classification, will they discount your extra module or will this be factored into the entire mark awarded, thus allowing me (atleast in theory though I really dont intend to..obviously) **** up in a module??

Sorry if that makes little/no sense, but if someone could help me, it would be much appreciated.

Cheers.

Basically overcatting raises your percentage score slightly at the end according to that seymore formula thing the uni uses. So it means its possible to get more than 100%, but its taking on a load of extra work, so might make the others suffer slightly, thus often is not recommended. Then again if its only over by 15 CATs and it seems like a cool module then hell why not.

Well you could go to all the lectures and stuff anyway and do all the work, but not register the module, but I wouldnt really see the point in that. If its something your that interested in your likely to do well in it anyway so might as well get something for your hard work.

last year i took 138 cats, and my average came out as 77% but with the seymour formula it got boosted to 82% so its definitely worth it if you can handle the work load!

Not unfair no, its just the risk that you take with overcatting, doing 120 is playing it safe by giving you less content to learn and be examined on. Overcatting means that if you do well you can boost your average score but it involves more work. Its a choice that you make.

Might b a stupid question becuase I porbably won't understand it anyway but does anyone have the seymore formula. Sorry just intrested how much it boosts the grades and the formula might show me. I think it's something to do with takeing average between what you get in marks out of 120 and what you get as a percentage. Is that right?

I dont have it on me but it should be in your course handbook(of which mine has gone astray)

Unless you do a pass degree....

No...if you **** up you get entered (forced) into the pass degree.

here's a link to the seymour formula:

http://www.maths.warwick.ac.uk/pydc/white/exams.html

http://www.maths.warwick.ac.uk/pydc/white/exams.html

You start out on an honours degree then if you narrowly fail a year (I believe usually 35-39%, i.e. just below a third) then you can be allowed to proceed to the next year but on a pass degree. Graduating with a degree without honours means you don't get a grade (like a first, 2.1, etc.) and your degree is basically a bit lower than someone who got a third with honours. Instead of taking 120 CATS, you then take usually around 90 CATS (though can be up to 120 with special permission, and can sometimes be a bit lower I believe) per year.

The Seymour formula essentially goes along these lines:

Final percentage = Actual percentage x ((120 + Actual CATS)/2) / 120

So, if you take a normal load of 120 CATS, your final grade is the same as your actual grade (so if your percentage worked out as 70% overall, that's what you get). If you did 135 CATS instead, your actual grade would be scaled as:

Final percentage = Actual percentage x ((120+135)/2) / 120 = Actual percentage x 127.5/120 = Actual percentage x 1.0625

In this case, if your percentage was 70% overall, the Seymour scale would "boost" you to about 74%.

There's probably a clearer explanation of it on the Warwick website - search for "Seymour formula" and you might get a better answer!

Having personally overcatted each year, I would say it can be perfectly doable depending on your modules, how much you enjoy each, how much time you're willing and able to spend on them, etc. I did it because I was genuinely interested in each module I chose to take - it's nice that it brings your score up a bit but bear in mind that there is extra work involved so it's not really getting something for nothing!

The Seymour formula essentially goes along these lines:

Final percentage = Actual percentage x ((120 + Actual CATS)/2) / 120

So, if you take a normal load of 120 CATS, your final grade is the same as your actual grade (so if your percentage worked out as 70% overall, that's what you get). If you did 135 CATS instead, your actual grade would be scaled as:

Final percentage = Actual percentage x ((120+135)/2) / 120 = Actual percentage x 127.5/120 = Actual percentage x 1.0625

In this case, if your percentage was 70% overall, the Seymour scale would "boost" you to about 74%.

There's probably a clearer explanation of it on the Warwick website - search for "Seymour formula" and you might get a better answer!

Having personally overcatted each year, I would say it can be perfectly doable depending on your modules, how much you enjoy each, how much time you're willing and able to spend on them, etc. I did it because I was genuinely interested in each module I chose to take - it's nice that it brings your score up a bit but bear in mind that there is extra work involved so it's not really getting something for nothing!

Can someone please explain the concept/benefit of taking more CATS than required...does anyone even do it?? I'm thinking of taking an extra 15 CAT module taking me up to 135 CATS, purely because im interested in doing that module.

When it comes to degree classification, will they discount your extra module or will this be factored into the entire mark awarded, thus allowing me (atleast in theory though I really dont intend to..obviously) **** up in a module??

When it comes to degree classification, will they discount your extra module or will this be factored into the entire mark awarded, thus allowing me (atleast in theory though I really dont intend to..obviously) **** up in a module??

Take a look at the maths department handbook - it has all the formulae to calculate Seymore averages. Best bet is to make a spreadsheet and guesstimate various marks to see how it will affect you overall.

Disclaimer: different departments have different rules. This is how it works for the maths department.

HALe

Yeah, I was confused about this too, what is a honours n a pass degree? I know pass degree takes less cats than honours, but which one is more common? Can people actually choose to do honours or pass, or it's all set in the beginning?

When you start out, you are automatically put onto the honours degree. On this degree, you are required to take at least 120 CATS of modules; usually about 90 or so must be modules run within the department.

At the end of the year, you get split up into the following degree classifications:

•

70+%: 1st

•

60-69%: 2.1

•

50-59%: 2.2

•

3rd: 40-49%

If you fall in the region of 35-39% then you are taken off of the honours degree and put on the pass degree, which is different in that you only need to take 90 CATS instead of the regular 120. Also (in the maths dept at least) there are certain modules which are compulsory (see the MA3 course Consolidation).

If you fall outside the pass degree, then you'll need to resit modules. In the first year, this happens in the September before second year; second year and third year resits are taken in the exam period a year later. As far as I'm aware, you're not permitted to take courses/be enrolled at the university during the interim period.

Hope this helps.

Thanks that explains a whole lot.

Hey guys,

Thanks very much for all your help...much appreciated. Now I just need to decide if I can cope with an extra module (doing Law so this may entail alot more reading.)

Thanks very much for all your help...much appreciated. Now I just need to decide if I can cope with an extra module (doing Law so this may entail alot more reading.)

I'd just like to add, it seems like people really played with the system extensively and got ridiculously good at overcatting and mark-boosting. So, in the 2006/07 year (and subsequent years), you didn't see any "extra" benefit from taking more than 150 CATS. In fact, with the even heavier workload, I can't see how taking extra CATS (on top of the 150 "cap") wouldn't lower your average mark.

The Seymour formula is a double-edged sword, don't forget that. Suppose you averaged 60% with 120 CATS. Now if you got 30% on an extra 12 CATS course you'd end up with the same Seymour mark back. Get higher than 30% you'll see a boost in your Seymour mark. Get lower than 30% and it would actually harm your overall mark. It's just to stop people from taking stupid CATS and to ensure that people taking the extra courses are only rewarded if they work sufficiently hard for them. (in general, you need to score more than haklf your average overlal mark on the extra module to see a boost of your Seymour percentage, otherwise your mark will go down)

The Seymour formula is a double-edged sword, don't forget that. Suppose you averaged 60% with 120 CATS. Now if you got 30% on an extra 12 CATS course you'd end up with the same Seymour mark back. Get higher than 30% you'll see a boost in your Seymour mark. Get lower than 30% and it would actually harm your overall mark. It's just to stop people from taking stupid CATS and to ensure that people taking the extra courses are only rewarded if they work sufficiently hard for them. (in general, you need to score more than haklf your average overlal mark on the extra module to see a boost of your Seymour percentage, otherwise your mark will go down)

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