For comps

1. a higher expectation: passing all exams at the same time would test a student at a much higher level than the requirements in individual courses
2. bootcamp experience: 1st year students working together forming lasting friendship
3. collective faculty attention to students: faculty working together creating and grading exams and discussing results
4. survival training: to succeed in grad school and later career, one must learn to perform under pressure
5. competitive advantage: comps can work in small departments but not large ones

Against comps

1. time sink: for the first year
2. no research:
3. material not most relevant: esp. for students in some areas
4. process not working: a student stays in the programs regardless of the test results
5. resentment by some students




1. Our only uniform measure and comparison

2. Encourage attention and hard work in associated courses

3. Encourage really learning some fundamentals, so that they might have a serious chance of ``cross pollination''

4. Stark discovery of outliers on the low end

5. Test our impressions of specialization prospects


1. Exceedingly busy time of year, thus discouraging well thought-out Comps questions, course final exams, and serious faculty attention to thesis proposals and six-month reviews

2. All-year pressure on students

3. Distraction from research, by both students and faculty

4. Some depressing performances (actually a pro, if we take constructive action!)

5. Ill will with the students (and applicants!)




This topic: Main > TWikiUsers > ChenDing > GradEductation2010
Topic revision: r2 - 2010-05-23 - JoelSeiferas
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