This course was very poorly coordinated in this semester (Sem1, 2015). There was a great lack of communication with students and incorrect details in the ECP. The ECP was not made available until well after week 1. Even then, the dates in the ECP were wrong, stating Thurs classes instead Fri, which caused confusion for at least one lecturer, let alone the students. Dates were changed in the ECP without any notification to students a number of times throughout the semester, even up until the last 2 weeks. The course coordinator seemed oblivious to the hassles this caused students. The blackboard was also not updated from the previous semester with old materials all over the place. I wasted time and money printing lecture slides from a year ago, at the beginning of semester.
Two of the pracs were also not updated in the ECP. The last prac stated it was about yeast, but it was actual about action potentials with cockroaches. The specific prac manuals for these were only available just prior to the pracs, so not much time to absorb and prepare. Then only a week was given for the written reports to be submitted. The ECP stated feedback would be within 3 weeks of submission, but after 6 weeks there was still no feedback nor any communication by the course coordinator about when this was likely, even after following up with him. He seemed to disappear in the last half of the semester.
There was no end of semester review lecture, each module just had a review lecture at the end (or in the last lecture) of that module, which in about half of the cases were just a rehash of the lectures and didn't help to prepare for the exam at all. Many of the exam questions were not representative of the key mechanisms in the lectures. In fact one short answer question worth 10 marks was on just one aspect of one slide on a very specific cell type. Other short answer questions were similar in that they were not about key overarching mechanisms. So if you do not thoroughly understand the 'details' behind 'every' slide, you will most likely not pass the exam, which btw was worth 60%. It would be more reasonable in a 2 hour exam to give students the choice of answering 4 out of the 6 short answer questions, like BIOL2200 did this semester, for such a content heavy course. The MCQs also seemed designed to confuse rather than test knowledge.
There was no assigned textbook, just a recommended text that we were encouraged to read. However, I did not find this textbook very useful. In addition, some of the lectures did not draw from this textbook, and diagrams within a single lecture were often from multiple texts. It was also difficult to pre-read prior to lectures because we didn't know in advance what the lectures would actually be covering in many cases. This put me behind in this course, sitting through lectures that just went over my head without having done relevant reading prior. And the reading I had done seemed to be a waste of time.
The only positive about this course was the interesting content, and the delivery of this by 4 out of the 6 lecturers. The other 2 lecturers were frustrating to listen to. I felt very unsupported in this course, and uninspired by the lack of consideration to students in terms of communication and fair testing of knowledge in what was a very heavy load of information to absorb. I hope you will manage the logistical issues better next time too to reduce the unnecessary extra burden on students.