Also has anyone heard of a maximum percentage possible on the written exams. I'm inclined to think it's impossible to get more than about 67% (6 of 9 questions, each question carries %11.111). Maybe this is just paranoid thinking but considering if you answer more than 6 only the lowest 6 are accepted, it wouldn't suprise me. If anyone has achieved more than 67% please let me know (and congrats to you), so I can lay this theory to rest
I am not exactly sure what you are asking here.
TC normally does not tell you your marks, but reading upside down, I know I have made significantly higher then 67% on my 2nds steam exam, so you theory is not correct. And why would you ever answer more then 6 questions? I have always considered my self lucky to know 4 definitely, 2 somewhat and the other three be clueless about.On my 2nds steam I hit it lucky and just about every question touched on boiler work I had just finished in our last refit. Plus there is the whole time issue. Writing 6 answers and drawings included makes time very short. I can't even imagine doing more then 6. Personally, I read all the questions and separate them into piles. One pile is the questions I know and can do the quickest, the second pile is the ones I have to think more about and will need more time, the third pile is the absolutely clueless pile or the ones I am less knowledgeable about. You do the questions you know most about first, because you can do them quickly then the questions you have to think about more. 6 questions in 3 hours is 30 minutes apiece so you have to watch the time and ensure you don't write too much on the ones you know and make the time too short for the rest of the questions.
As for the orals, I always make sure I know the answer for the 6 questions I didn't answer in the written (motor/steam, EK), then safety, some management, now ISM will play a big part in the answers and then hope that I studied everything I need to know. When you come out of the written, write down your questions as soon as you can before you forget what you were asked.
If the Examiner wants to fail you in the oral, I think he could do it easily enough just by asking obscure questions. It really is impossible to study everything. Good marks in your written does help in your orals I have found.
Remember you are doing your 2nds. You are now moving out of the watchkeeping routine to managing the engineroom. Always make sure you answer your questions in that way. Firefighting, you are directing a team, repairs, you are directing and analyzing causes. You are setting watches and work lists.
Your questions puzzled me, which is why I directed my answer towards the written part. I think there are people out there who are writing their exams and are not being told how to write the exam to be most effective.
Good luck in your Orals. Remember to breath. Passing out in front of the examiner will definitely not help