Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Rooms, Exams, and Scotland

I had a request for a little tour of my dorm room here. There are two student housing options here (they pre-assign you, and you get no preference). Most students live in the Carriage House, which is a little walk away from the main Manor (it's where the servants would have been quartered). Then there are students that get to live in the Manor proper. That's where I live! I don't have to leave the buildling for classes, but I try to get outside to enjoy the fresh air as much as possible :)

You can see the rest of my room tour here:

Also. I have not had fish & chips yet... well, not officially. Here at the Manor they'll serve it once every week and a half or so, but it's ... well, it's cafeteria food. I don't normally have any problems with the food served here at our Refectory -- in fact, I haven't come across anything other than the fish that I don't like/won't eat (I can't say the same for other people here though....)! But I don't like seafood to begin with, and then the breaded fish here actually still has the skin/scales on under the breading and I just have a hard time rising above it... Anyway, no fish & chips, but I'll get on it soon...

Next. We had our first exam in British Studies (the big, hard, 6 credit class everyone here HAS to take - taught by British faculty, focusing on the entire history of Britain - in detail!). It's a three-part essay exam. You have to analyze and "Image of Monarchy" and reflect on its theme, what its representing, what the style is communicating, etc. etc. etc. Basically, portaits were the mass media and political propaganda medium before there was mass media, and you have to be able to identify what it's saying. Then we had a question (a very detailed question, I might add) that focused largely on our madatory class field trip to Lincoln earlier in the semester. That one was rough. And then the third one (you could choose one-of-three --- um, Extemp anyone?) and I answered: "Monarchs are the embodiment of the nation." Discuss as it relates to at least three British Monarchs who reigned before the Glorious Revolution.

It's an exam style different from any I've ever experienced. There is not one single factually correct response - there are an infinite number. So instead of grading you based on the facts you are able to recall, we are graded on argumentation. Again, Extemp anyone? I really felt prepared for this type of exam (even wrote outlines in Extemp format!), but for some reason I'm incredibly nervous that he (my professor) won't buy my argumentation! It's like the first tournament you take your Crit out to... you just made one hell of a statement, and you're just waiting for postings to see if you made sense... So much for being able to get past competition! I find ways to turn my life into one gigantic speech tournament...

Wow, this is becoming a long post... Anyway, I wanted to show you a littl epicture of my study guide... I printed a family tree of all the Kings/Queens of England and added notes all willy-nilly everywhere! It's crazy...

I leave tomorrow for Scotland (which I still have to pack for!)... I plan to visit Edinburgh, Inverness (with a boat tour of Loch Ness!) and Glasgow (though I'm not sure what I'll do there yet...). I have but three things to say: Kilts, Scotch Whiskey Heritage Tour, and Nessie. Am I right? I will undoubtedly have a million photos to upload on Sunday!

Until then, cheers!
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1 comment:

KJ said...

I love the tour of your room, though I agree it looks a bit like a prison cell. I guess that speaks to how long it's been since I lived in the dorms!

I hope you have a great time in Scotland. I look forward to the pictures - hopefully Nessy will cooperate and you'll get a lovely picture of her :-)

Get on those fish and chips!