NUS Module Review: Yr 1 Sem 1 (2013/14)

NUS Module Review: Yr 1 Sem 1 (2013/14)

Hello there~

I shall give a short review on the modules I took last sem (yr1sem1) :’D (cause I’m bored *coughs*)

PL1101E: Introduction to Psychology

Prof John Elliot was the lecturer for this, and even though he did critic the textbook and gave additional info to ponder about from time to time, I started skipping lecture halfway through because the bulk of his lectures was simply a summary of the textbook. Had webcast as well but if the population in the lecture theatre was too small he would threaten to stop the webcast (which is understandable..who wants to talk to people who don’t wanna listen to you?).

I used the extra time to read the ebook ehehe.

Mid-terms had 100 mcq questions which tested on even the tiniest details in the textbook… I have the impression that psych in nus is basically all about memorizing (which i suck at unfortunately). [3-years-later-year4-me-edit: it’s more of a balance between memorization and critical thinking/argumentative skills as you go higher up into 3000/4000s! It also depends on the modules you take. Open-book modules will most likely be more heavily dependent on critical thinking skills and open-ended questions with a hugeee possibility of answers]

Finals had 75 mcq qns and 5 short answer questions worth 5 marks each. The questions were pretty random, like “what is natural selection?”

Tutorials were pretty okay, once every two weeks and most of the questions are just copy and paste from the textbook.

People with photographic memories should definitely take psych cus it’ll probably pull up their grades a lot lolol.

Average people like me will just struggle averagely. *sobs*

But I still enjoyed what I learnt in psych, I now know a little more about my mind and my body and the reasons behind some of our body’s reactions. 🙂

(well i have to since i wanna major in it a hah aaha…)

Rating – 1 being least and 5 being most.

Difficulty in understanding: 1/5

Workload: 2/5

Self-study time: 5/5


SC1101E: Making Sense of Society

Lectures and tutorials were interesting and push you to think about our society and the mechanisms behind it. Had webcast which was pretty convenient hehe.

I think taking soci has helped me to mature a little, I seriously learnt a lot from just one mod in one semester.

We learnt about power, family, religion etc. using different theories by different sociologists. And it’s weird to look at personal issues from a worldly view, but I guess that’s what sociologists do.

Unfortunately my essay writing sucks (why am i in fass) so the amount this mod taught me doesn’t translate into my grades /cries. My worst grade in uni so far (B-). hopefully for my whole of uni as well lol.

Rating – 1 being least and 5 being most.

Difficulty in understanding: 3/5

Workload: 3/5

Self-study time: 3/5


EL1101E: The Nature of Language

Lectures are pretty intense as compared to the other mods. We have lecture notes to fill up and stuff. But a lot of times we end around half an hour earlier than the normal lect ending time 😀 (so the lecture duration is only an hour long most of the time)

Tutorials consisted of different groups presenting on the tutorial each week. there’s also another side group project on top of the 2 tutorial group presentations. Sounds like a lot but can actually be done through google docs and it didn’t require us to write essays as well so it worked out fine. 🙂

This mod is actually more sciencey than I expected (which is good because i’m not good in arts….”so why are you in fas-” shhhhhhhhh!) so what we learnt was pretty easy to handle and apply, just needs a little practice.

The tutors gave a lot of hints for the finals on the forums when they’re replying to students’ questions ahahha. And a few of the tutorial questions actually came out in the final exam. There were a lot of mcq questions as well which were reallyyyy (too) easy.

I’ll be taking EL2201 next sem too, we’ll see how it goes~

Rating – 1 being least and 5 being most.

Difficulty in understanding: 2/5

Workload: 3/5

Self-study time: 2/5


JS1101E: Introduction to Japanese Studies

First impression: both lecturers are americans :O and they’re the ones who interviewed me for my scholarship interview lolol.

Dr.Hislop went through the first half of the lectures and I like how he keeps us listening with personal anecdotes every now and then which makes it easier for us to remember certain things. His lectures clearly follow the readings and are divided into different timelines.

Dr.McMorran’s lectures are divided based on different segments (population, material, culture) which can be pretty confusing, and they almost seem to be distinct from the week’s readings unless read carefully. He can be pretty entertaining at times as well, but he tends to not be able to finish all that he wanted to lecture because he elaborates a lot I guess.

His lecture slides have blanks in them sometimes that we have to fill in ourselves (so that we’ll pay attention lol).

I’ve learnt quite a lot about japan from this module too, and about the two sides there are to history.

We had to write a paper in groups on any topic about japan. Be sure to work with people who won’t slack off. This guy in my group was such a slacker (and a liar) and he almost ruined it all but thankfully we quickly edited his stuff and submitted it before he saw LOL.

The final exam consisted of 40mcqs. It was the hardest set of mcqs i’ve done in my entire life +__+ [3-years-later-year4-me edit: *donald trump voice* WRONG. PL4228 criminal forensic psych could be the hardest set of mcqs instead]

It was reallyyy a killer and I felt dead for awhile after the exam LOL.

Rating – 1 being least and 5 being most.

Difficulty in understanding: 3/5

Workload: 4/5

Self-study time: 4/5


LAJ1201: Japanese 1

By far the most intensive module i’ve taken! 5 hours of tutorial per week (compare that with 2 hours of tutorial every 2 weeks for psych) with 1.5hrs of lecture every week.

This requires consistent studying; every week we learn new particles, vocab and grammar structures so it’s a must to keep up. And during tutorials we have a lot of practices that require us to act out or speak out and describe the pictures so it’s obvious if you don’t study.

There’s a short test every 2 tutorial lessons and a lecture listening practice/test at the start of the lecture (so it’ll be good to be able to come earlier for lecture. i almost always miss that lol)

The materials are expensiveeee, $98 for the CDs, 2 textbooks and a workbook. There’s also a coursepack. At first I was so confused because there were so many materials I didn’t know which to refer to lol. T__T

Anyway minna no nihongo pink book is for vocab and important grammar notes(study that first), and red book (which is all in japanese) has examples of grammar structures and practices to do.

There’s also a study plan thing weekly in the coursepack that tells you which page of which book to do every week and what tests are coming up. So that’s pretty useful~

There’s also a skit, speech presentation, oral exam and lecture presentation as well.

Despite the intensity, it was pretty enjoyable, the stuff that required group/partner work allowed me to interact with new people ahahha.

The final exam was pretty okay too considering that we’ve been studying consistently every week.

Anyway I’m continuing with the next japanese lang class despite my poor grade. i shall work harderrrrr and hopefully I can improve my japanese and go to japan for exchange *-* (sounds like a dream though)

[3-years-later-year4-me-edit: yes I managed to go to Japan for exchange and had one of the best times of my undergrad life. Dreams do come trueeeee ~disney~]

Rating – 1 being least and 5 being most.

Difficulty in understanding: 3/5

Workload: 5/5

Self-study time: 5/5

Yay, I’m done! 😀

Disclaimer: all my reviews are based on my own personal experience. What’s easier for me may be harder for others (and vice versa)! Resultsmayvaryeachsetsoldseparatelynorefundsgiven.

Yr 1 Sem 1: x (pl1101e, js1101e, laj1201, sc1101e, el1101e)

Yr 1 Sem 2: x (el2201, pl2131, pl3232, pl3235, laj2201)

Yr 2 Sem 1: x (pl2132, pl3236, pl3240, gek1508, laj2202)

Yr 2 Sem 2: x (sss1207, pl3252, pl3234, pl3233, laj2203)

Yr 3 Sem 2: x (acc1002x, gek1049, pl3287, pl4207, pl4880j)

Yr 4 Sem 1: x (gek1900, lab1201, pl4228, pl4206)

Yr 4 Sem 2: x (pl4401, pl4480g)

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