Chemical and Materials: FAQ!!

Hey everyone! Welcome back to my very last blog! I hope you are all still hanging in there, bathing in all of glory of studying for exams. Yayy :’)) A few more weeks to go and we’re freed for the year! I hope you all or at least the most of you still want to do Engineering at this point and if you’re wanting to do Chemical and Materials, even betterr!! In todays blog, I will go through a few questions you might have about CHEMMAT. And also, have my last attempt at convincing you all to join our amazing specialisation (pls do)!!

Is there any coding??

You guys, I am so sorry to tell but … yes we do. BUT we only have it for ONE CHEMMAT course this year: CHEMMAT 203 in sem 2!! In this course we use MATLAB and do 2 MATLAB assignments. If you enjoyed ENGGEN 131, then you will enjoy having MATLAB back! But for the rest of us, don’t worry, we are provided with MATLAB workshops and plentyyy of time for these assignments (although most of us start the week of the due date 😐 ) And trust me, the hardest part isnt the coding, its figuring out equations that you need to code. And also, we get plentyy of marks from the report part of these assignments too so this is definitely not something you should be disheartened by if you were considering CHEMMAT.

We also have coding in ENGSCI 211 but don’t worry, its literally the easiest coding language ever, I mean it! We use a programming language called R used for statistics. If no one told you yet, yes we have a bunch of statistics coming your way next year. As someone, who last did stats in year 11, it wasn’t that bad and definitely a topic you could get easy marks from! And everyone one of us engineers need to suffer so just like the High School Musical, we’re all in this together!

Is there a lot of group work??

In CHEMMAT, other than your labs, we only have 2 courses in sem 2 that involve group work: CHEMMAT 205 and ENGGEN 204. In CHEMMAT 205, you work with your group to write a report and present your group’s work about a engineering industry (eg: cheese making, wastewater management, etc) that you have been assigned with. These are pretty simple assignments if you put some time and effort into your work and group. And don’t worry, you get heaps of useful feedback from your lecturer along the way! Are you a bit worried about the presenting? Although we all have to present, Presenting is something we all have to learn to do as engineers and we all have to start somewhere. And trust me, presenting in uni is a little less nerve wrecking that the speeches you may have done in highschool. And in CHEMMAT, our classes are fairly small so you will be performing in front of people you know well!

ENGGEN 204 is a course all us engineering students have to do!! And it is definitely the easiest course I have done so far! With your group, you work on a video assignment, a presentation (not everyone has to perform!!) and a report. If you’re a little artistic and are just waiting to release your inner artist in this engineering degree, here is your time to shine: look forward to the video assignment and presentation!!

In my personal experience, I have learnt so much about myself from working in these groups; what my skills are, my weaknesses and just overall improved as a team member. Even if group work sounds isn’t your cup of tea, there is always something for you in a group!! And from these group work, you will take on skills that you will be using going forward.

Is it math heavy??

In short yes. Whoever told me that CHEMMAT doesn’t have much math lied! All I do is calculate!! Although, we do have 2 pretty content heavy courses in sem 1 (CHEMMAT 204 and CHEMMAT 206), the rest is mainly learning where to apply equations. The rest of the courses do have some content that is covered but this is just for you to know in order to understand the calculations you will dive into ahead. There is not a whole lot of integrating and differentiating, but it is mostly plugging in numbers into an equation. But you need to know when and how to use these equations!!

Are there any labs??

YES for sure. In sem 1, you will go through 6 labs all together yayy!! But somehting I wasn’t prepared for was the lab reports. Though most of them are not too difficult, they are definitely a little time consuming. And for CHEMMAT 206, do not leave your lab reports till the last minute!! In sem 2, you have 3 labs and the lab reports are a little easier this sem (as in you just have to answer questions.)

A few tips you might want to take with you:

  • Always take notes: bring something to take notes on; what your lab tutor is saying (really listen), if there’s any inconsistencies in your method – take notes!
  • Learn some excel: if you have some spare time over the summer, I beg you please learn some some excel. I didn’t realise how important excel was going to be this year
  • Read the lab manual/ videos before hand (especially sem 1)

That is the end of my blog! Thank you so much for coming to to my very last blog. I hope these rants have been at least a little useful to you and that I managed to lure you into this super duper awesome, one of a kind, not-like-the-other-specialisations specialisation!! I hope I get to see to see a slightly bigger cohort for next years Part II CHEMMAT students!

Anyways, I hope you guys are still hanging in there, still wanting to do engineering. And if you are worried about your grades and GPA, at the end of the day, all the specialisations are as good as the next and if it really isn’t for you, its not too late to change. Thank you again for coming to the end of this blog!! If you want to ask me a question, message me on LinkedIn.

Other than that, goodbye and good luck for your exams and good luck for whatever you decide to do :))

-Hirushi 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *