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  • Orals Exams

    OK finally, after four long years of a cadetship, I have my orals on thursday. And I can't for the life of me remember anything I have learnt. Is this just stress?

    I'm so nervous its unreal. Our lecturers have a habit of building it up to be a little more intense than it is, or so I have heard from others from my phase.

    Anybody got any tips? Anything they can note from their own orals?

    Any help would be much appreciated!

    Katy

  • #2
    Hi Katy and welcome!

    I'm a bit far off myself so I can't really offer any tips, but does your college do orals reports? Could be handy if they're local so you get to know each examiner's "style" and the sort of questions being asked.
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    • #3
      well they do, and I've looked at them all in orals prep, however due to paperwork issues my oral prep was actually in december, and STC is having work done and it is summer hols. The main issue I'm having is with my rules i believe. Its like I have a permanent memory block on the last four years, I know them all but I just cannot get the words out. I'm pretty sure its just oral stress though. Sorry I'm rambling!

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      • #4
        Hi Katy

        In relation to your Orals preparation, I found the key to be continually going over all the work you have already put in and making sure you remember all the critical points. Where possible, revise in groups and ask each other questions. As you have no doubt seen from the Orals reports, the breadth of questioning can vary widely, but good preparation will mean you can handle anything you face.

        At this stage of your preparation I presume you have covered most of the major topics (even if most was several months ago), and personally I would spend time making sure you fully understand the Rules and Buoyage. Although the remainder of the content is very important, a detailed understanding of those two areas is likely to form a major part of your Orals exam. Although it can help to know the Rules word perfect, a full understanding of the Rules and their application is what matters.

        As CD says, use the Orals Reports as a base for your revision.

        Orals should be nothing to panic about - try to just go into your exam and do your best. As most on here will no doubt agree, the feeling you get when he says the words "you've passed" is amazing. Very best of luck!

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        • #5
          Well - this thread has been quiet for a while! Thought I'd kick it up again as I've got my Orals coming up in the next couple of weeks....

          With regards to how well you should know the Rules - do you realistically need to be able to tell the examiners rules verbatim?

          My problem is I have a full understanding of the Rules - I know what to do in *most* situations. (Don't want to jinx myself by saying 'all situations' although really I should!)


          Will he/she expect you to state things EXACTLY as they're written or is it okay explaining what the rule says?

          I know the majority of the steering and sailing rules of by heart - don't want to be faffing around trying to learn all of that section 'word for word' when there's so much else to be going through!
          Remember, you can be sea sick and sick of the sea. Avoid both at all costs...

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          • #6
            You do not need to know the rules verbatim, but it certainly helps to know certain rules exactly and this becomes more important on your Mates and Masters Oral. You need to understand the rules properly, and understand the idiosyncrasies in them. Being able to quote certain parts can help you refer back to why the rules are the way they are. Rules like Safe Speed, Lookout etc need to known word for word.

            Rules, Buoys and Radar Plots are the equivilent to "Major Mistakes" in a DVLA driving test, and pretty much the rest are "Minors".

            It is very important to relax, remain as calm as you can, and try not to panic. Take time to think through the question, it's highly unlikely that an examiner will try to trip you up, but he will put pressure on you.

            The past oral reports are a critical resource, so try to ensure that you can answer all of the previous past questions in the recent 12 months.

            Good luck

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            • #7
              Thanks for the reply - I've been going through all the part oral reports I can get my hands on and trying to answer the same questions.

              Buoyage I'm feeling happy with, radar plots - fairly okay, it's the rules I'm terrified of! Although like you say - it's highly unlikely that an examiner would try to trip anyone up.

              Thankfully I have mine in the afternoon - much nicer than having to get up really early (although I doubt I'll be able to sleep much the night before anyway!)

              Cheers for the reply :]
              Remember, you can be sea sick and sick of the sea. Avoid both at all costs...

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              • #8
                Katy,

                These guys make some good points, you should try to go over a much as you can! Personally I think it's best to prepare like its a presentation with key points on cue cards, so you could try this.

                I would also recommend explaining that you are nervous to your tutor and perhaps they can fit you in for a practice... I'm sure they will be more than willing to help
                Maritime Security

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by tomkent45 View Post
                  Katy,

                  These guys make some good points, you should try to go over a much as you can! Personally I think it's best to prepare like its a presentation with key points on cue cards, so you could try this.

                  I would also recommend explaining that you are nervous to your tutor and perhaps they can fit you in for a practice... I'm sure they will be more than willing to help
                  I imagine she has done them seeing as the original post was almost a year ago!

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