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Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Business 101 Exam Resource

In year twelve classical studies, our second internal (basically a coursework assignment) was some kind of report. To help us do it, our teacher gave us a planning sheet that we were to work on. .

I'm not sure what the whole story was with this planning sheet. Maybe I thought we were at some point going to be asked to start working on the plan for the second part of the report. I don't know. I do know we were given time in class to work on our plans. I recall, but I am not certain in the recollection, realising (when this in class time was nearly over) that we were actually meant to use the time writing the report itself. I know that I belatedly realised that we had to hand in the plan too, and consequentially had one very detailed plan and another retrospective, very hastily done, plan for the second part.

Why mention all this? Well, firstly because, right now, at this moment, I feel like I have already done all the work for a 3000 word essay because I have created a PlanTM.  Secondly, because it will help me make clear some advice. Thirdly, it uses up time. Thus, in avoiding doing some actual work, I present you with two things:
  1. Don't get too into planning things (esp. in exams: plans aren't usually marked).
  2. The substance of this blog, which will be an exam resource for Business 101.
Firstly, I will return to my review of Business 101 to steal its description of the exam:
The exam and mid-semester test function much like what I think of when I hear the word "exam": a couple of questions (five and ten for 101, five and eight for 102) with single paragraph responses. As I said above, the structure of the answers does matter. I forget what Business used but it's the TEER (topic sentence, explanation, example, relevance) or SEX (sentence, explanation, example) model that everyone's familiar with. Think of each paragraph as being a short essay. Examples are sometimes called for in the question but, as a rule, if it makes sense to use an example there should be one. The course also likes links to be drawn between content (this is something that the team presentation works on) but these should only be done when they make sense and are natural (i.e. there's some fluid relevance to mentioning, say, corporate social responsibility in your answer to a question about organisational culture; sometimes that's a natural link and sometimes it isn't). However, while good structure can help poor answers, to do well one needs to be right, concise and clear.
Bearing this advice in mind, I will now present my answers from the Semester One 2014 Business 101 Exam. As with the Infosys 110 exam resource post, I will not be providing the questions. For why, refer to that post or be satisfied with "this is my understanding of the law and the ethics relevant to the provision of past exam answers". If you want the questions, look at the past papers on the library website. I will, though, provide some context. As I said above, we had ten questions, each worth ten marks. I did a lot of work for this particular exam because I was afraid of failing (due to having achieved 25/50 in the test), at the expense of the other exam I had later the same day. Remembering that my Business 101 had preworks, I managed to get 83.9% of the available coursework marks (which gives you an idea of the quality of the following answers). I ended up with 79/100 for the exam as a whole.

Warning: do not treat these answers as model answers because they aren't. What you are about to read are nothing more than the responses of a single student, so don't treat them as having anything official weight behind them. I simply think that you may find it useful, as a current 101 student, to get an idea of what a Business 101 exam answer looks like. I also believe that having a look at my exam answers may well help future students make more efficient choices by providing more information (and if you go on to take stage one BCom, and not just economics, papers you will get an idea of the academic reasoning to this belief).















As you can see, there were some questions that I did quite a bit better on than others. I leave it as an exercise to the reader to figure out what was better about those particular answers (and not just because if I did so, presumably as preparation for Business 102, I haven't got a digital work through of that).

You may recall that I thought a mindmap was a particularly useful framework in studying for Business 101: this was the one I made. You can also use this as a proxy to evaluate how different the topics currently taught are (if that is indeed the case).

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