Please note if you have a mac computer, please make sure to have an adapter for the projector!
There are Two Oral Exams
- The experimental oral, 25 min: One should arrive with a viewgraphs presentation (hand written is fine), a powerpoint-like presentation, or even something you built and tested. These are tools to help explain your project to the examiners. The exam is about the project, not about the presentation. One should expect frequent interruptions, so prepare a presentation that lasts about 10 minutes; the remainder of the time will be used for questions. You might not even get to the end of your presentation. Questions about anything in your report are fair game as are reasonable questions about the equipment on which your report is based. You should be prepared to discuss the sources of systematic and statistical error as well. For example, if you did a report on the Sloan Digital Sky Survey you should know how the observations are made but not necessarily how the CCDs are placed in the focal plane. Remember, this is an experimental oral given by experimentalists!
- Advanced project/pre-thesis oral, 25 min: One should have a prepared presentation, along the lines given above, that lasts absolutely no longer than 17 minutes. You will get frequent questions. In this oral especially, we are looking for a depth of understanding that is indicative of independent research. This is not about reporting science but about intellectual engagement. You should know far more than you are able to present and that should come across in the presentation. There is wide agreement that these orals are fun: they give the faculty a chance to see what's happening in other fields. Come tell us what you've been thinking about!