Mistakes in Answers By AMIE Aspirants

Many examining boards ask their examiners to produce reports each year which explain the general performance of candidates. The same concerns are highlighted year-in-year-out. They invariably read
something like this:

  • ‘Many students did not read the instructions at the head of the question paper. Some answered fewer than required and some even answered more! Some failed to answer the required number from each section and others missed out elements of a multi-part question.’
  • ‘Students did not read the questions carefully enough. A question in "Mechanics of Solids" is about defining engineering strain and a student writes accidently about engineering stress!
  • ‘Students did not take careful note of the verb in the question which told them what to do e.g. assess, compare, describe, argue, list, etc. Instead, they repeated all they could think of about the topic involved.’
  • ‘Students did not plan their answers. They produced an uncoordinated mass of prose which jumped around from point to point with no logical thread running through the answer. In short, there was no structure or logic to the answer which made it very difficult to mark.’
  • ‘Judgements and viewpoints were not supported by clear evidence. Lack of objectivity was often evident with wild generalisations and personal prejudices included.’
  • ‘Students did not manage their time effectively which meant that many did not finish. Others wrote unnecessarily long answers to some questions and only a few lines for the final ones because they ran out of time.’

AMIE students should take care of these points while answering in AMIE exams. Remember, an examiner always intend to give you good marks provided you write what is asked in the question - neither less nor more.

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