Last Lecture

Coffee in the cafeteria before the last lecture. Ever. In this study program. OK, well, there’s an exam preperation session for IT security on Thursday, but that doesn’t really count. This morning is the last time we’ll ever have a regular lecture. With tons of slides, and frantic trying to keep pace and make sense of the masses of new information while at the same time taking notes (or writing flashcards, in my case). Granted, in this case I’ve done the flashcards in advance, yesterday. Providing I guessed right which set of slides–of three still missing, as the lecture covered only a part of the official contents of the “Certified Tester” certificate exam–the professor will rush through today.

Last time that familiar process of arriving at the UAS campus, getting a cup of coffee, and preparing for a day of studying–a day on which nothing else counts. A calming, reassuring feeling that things make sense. This afternoon, the last practicum ever (we’ll be role-playing a technical review, should be fun). That done, we’ll have earned the last PVL. Ever. The 24th in this study program, by the by. A lot of last things.

And then there’ll be nothing left but studying. Yesterday I already logged four hours of lecture slides and flashcards for Certified Tester (the first exam, nine days hence), but I’ll need a lot more of this before I’ll feel confident. I reviewed the professor’s Altklausuren and they were not reassuring. Among other things, every time she asked for terms and their definition from the infamously opaque and redundant ISO 9126 standard on software quality. And she asked the hierarchy of terms backwards, i.e exactly the opposite way from how it’s organized in the standard and in which people will learn it: To which category does a certain quality measure belong? So I wrote 30 more flashcards to get this stuff right. In addition to about 100 more on testing in the lifecycle of a software product (component testing, integration testing, and so on). All common-sense stuff, but in the official certificate exam and the professor’s oral exam we’ll most certainly be asked to provide the exact wording of definitions, and that’s tough.

But yeah, the usual stuff. As five times before, it’s extremely stressful, full of uncertainty, and in the end certainly doable. What really makes it strange, this time, is that this, too, will be the last time ever.

I am trying to picture a life after CS at UAS and I find it hard. Such a lot of things will change. Not being a student anymore will take a big chunk of orientation and self-confidence out of my life. We’ll see.

But first, another lecture, and the exams.

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