Review of GER1000: Quantitative Reasoning
Updated: Jun 7, 2021
Year took: AY2019/2020 Semester 2
Five pillars form General Education in NUS and students must read one module from each pillar. Quantitative Reasoning (GER1000) and Except for Asking Questions (GEQ1000) are single module pillars. Therefore, GER1000 is compulsory for every student. The semester that I took GER1000 was when the COVID situation was developing. This caused the module to be shifted online and the assessment criteria were changed. The assessment criteria are as follows:
1. LumiNUS quizzes – 25%
2. Class participation – 10%
3. Project – 45%
4. Final examination – 20%
There are no physical lectures for GER1000. Instead, lectures are pre-recorded and uploaded onto Luminus. In my opinion, the lecture videos are concise, easy to understand, and well done. Content taught includes how to collect and examine data, sampling, observational studies, and the usage of probability. The chapter on probability reminded me of statistics taught in H2 Mathematics. Do not fret if you did not take H2 Mathematics because the chapter on probability is not difficult to understand.
Fortunately for GER1000, its content is relatively easy to understand. (Source)
Some students prefer reading the lecture notes rather than watch the lecture videos. I suppose this boils down to whether you are a visual/auditory learner or a reading learner. The notes that are given are comprehensive and some contain a transcript of the lecture videos. It also contains almost all the information mentioned in the lecture videos. You will not be missing out on much content if you choose to read the lecture notes instead.
I recommend keeping up with the lecture videos as we have to complete a weekly graded quiz on Luminus. It is a short MCQ quiz with only 5 to 6 questions. The computation of scores is taken from the best 7 out of 10 quizzes. The quiz can be tricky so it will help tremendously if you are familiar with the concept taught for the week. As it is an open book quiz, we can discuss answers with our friends too so try to secure your 25%! Remember to do your quiz every week because I forgot about it once and I was getting 3/5 on my previous quizzes. I was ready to say goodbye to the elusive A grade.
This is me when I submit quizzes that only score 3/5 points. (Source)
Tutorial and class participation:
Tutorials are held every fortnight and I had a great tutor. He was enthusiastic, patient, and made complex concepts easy to understand. Tutorials were helpful as it cleared misconceptions I did not know I had, and I learned additional useful information. A different chapter was covered in every tutorial session. Thus, my tutor will spend the first hour giving a recap and summary. The next hour was spent on going through the tutorial. We will discuss the answers in our project group before my tutor randomly picks a student to answer questions. Questions are posed to the floor too. Most questions are manageable and for complicated questions, my tutor will guide the student through. To score for class participation, do speak up when you can and there is no need to be afraid!!
The group project was split into two components and the first is a one-page report. Each group will select a topic from a given list then receive a newspaper article and a primary source based on it. The report makes up 10% of the project component. Questions regarding the newspaper and primary source are given to every group and the report was an answer sheet to the questions. I thought that the questions range from being simple to tricky. Information from the two sources can be confusing to interpret so do read the sources carefully and approach with a clear mind.
Ngl this is me when I name my project files. (Source)
The second component is a group presentation. Just like the report, the presentation will answer questions about the two sources. We were assessed based on the following criteria: the accuracy of facts, the quality of evaluations, slide design, and delivery. I recommend having one person oversee the making of slides to ensure that the slides flow cohesively. My presentation was done over zoom and I did not mind as I felt that it was easier to score.
The final exam consisted of 20 MCQ questions and a practice paper was released on Luminus. Although just one practice paper was available, I thought that it was sufficient. We could still revise our weekly quizzes and tutorial which provided enough content. Even though I did additional papers, I think it is unnecessary as the content tested can be irrelevant. Ensure that you have a clear understanding of the various concepts and can apply them easily. I found the final to be manageable and most people felt the same.
All in all, I enjoyed my time taking GER1000. Despite being a mandatory module, I never hated the content or dreaded classes. I found it interesting to learn the right way to sample and collect data. Furthermore, it was easy to see the relevance of GER in my daily life.