The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.

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6:30pm on Thursday, 20th December, 2012:

Last Day


I went onto campus today for a PhD board meeting. It's the last time I have to go there until early January, so I can stay nice and cosy at home for the rest of the year.

This is the break when, if students are going to dye their hair, they typically dye it. I've noticed a pattern with this over the years, which despite its being completely unscientific, hey, I'll share it.

So, the basic rule is that if a final-year student comes back to university with their hair dyed a different colour, then if it's a female student she's going to underperform and if it's a male student he's going to overperform.

My theory about the female students (not that I have many) is that they suspect they're not going to do well in their examinations, so they dye their hair in order that it feels as if it's someone else doing badly, not they themselves. "It wasn't me, it was the blonde me", that kind of thing.

My theory about the male students (not that many of them dye their hair) is that they feel confident about their progress and so confident in general. "If I want blue hair I'll have blue hair", something like that.

As I said, it's completely unscientific but it is a pattern I've spotted (at least among Essex University Computer Science students).

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Copyright © 2012 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).