I am a second year student in Mathematics in the UK and my Calculus lecturer practices something which he calls "Focussed Revision". What I've heard from students in years above me is that "focussed revision" is essentially the exam questions that are going to be in this year's exam with numbers/functions changed.

Is this allowed or is it a "different university, different rules" kind of subject? If it is NOT allowed, is it possible that my grades will be affected if somebody finds out?

  • Being in the U.S., I am not well-acquainted-enough with U.K. usage to guess reliably... But in the U.S., there is a notion (with a similar-sounding label) of having students re-do exams and/or homework after being graded, to correct their own work, and re-submit (for improved grades, but that's not the actual purpose...). The idea is that people don't learn things in a single stroke, but can benefit from feedback... and that the true goal is education, not filtering or weeding out, so it's all-for-the-good if we can get students to understand what we wish they would! – paul garrett Jan 4 '17 at 22:57
  • @paulgarrett The "focussed revision" paper is given before the first try of the exam though! Not that I'm complaining... – Edward Evans Jan 4 '17 at 23:21
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    From what I understand of the UK exam system (and in many parts of the EU), there is traditionally very little feedback during the term, with all bets on the (final) exam. Based on my experience over some decades in the U.S. university system, this seems not likely optimal for students' learning... not that I can guarantee anything better! So, conceivably, this is an attempt to give earlier feedback. In general terms, that's certainly good, rather than trying to maintain a mystery about the (final) exam, as though response to secretiveness were an interesting gauge of students' scholarship. – paul garrett Jan 4 '17 at 23:27
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    I work in a maths+stats department of a UK university and I have never heard of "focused revision" by that name. In different universities, revision sessions/lectures are often organized before the main exam period, but practices seem to vary between universities. I don't think your grades should be affected since ultimately it is the responsibility of the lecturer, or the course convenor, to set an exam that the department as a whole is happy with. – Yemon Choi Jan 5 '17 at 0:38
  • I've never heard of this not being allowed, and can't imagine it not being allowed. – aparente001 Jan 5 '17 at 5:01

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