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4 Classes of Math/Physics/Engineering a Quarter - Too Much?

  1. Aug 15, 2012 #1
    4 Classes of Math/Physics/Engineering a Quarter -- Too Much?

    I plan on double majoring in robotics engineering and applied physics at UCSC. This plan mandates an extensive schedule -- four STEM courses a quarter. Is this just a ridiculous load to handle? Or is it, provided the person is intelligent and hard working, somewhat doable? My view of doable entails going out on weekend nights and getting you know, like six hours of sleep a night on average.

    I know that it's doable for the first couple of years for the lower division courses, but there are some quarters later on that seem straight up insane; for example, spring junior year I have to take quantum mechanics, thermodynamics, math methods for physicists iii and intro to microprocessors in the same quarter. Especially since UCSC is world renowned for undergradute research -- an activity in which I'll have to fully partake due to my grad school applications -- does this seem like too much?

  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 15, 2012 #2


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    Re: 4 Classes of Math/Physics/Engineering a Quarter -- Too Much?

    Hey camjohn and welcome to the forums.

    If you haven't already taken first year courses, it would unwise to speculate if it is doable or not for yourself.

    If a lot of the first year stuff is new to you and you do well, then I can't see a reason why you couldn't do the same in later years. You also have to remember that after you do stuff for a few years you get a form of intellectual maturity where the prior experience helps understand the new stuff in different ways.

    Obviously this is a very personal question, but if I had to give advice for later years the best thing to do would be to try the first year and see if you can handle that first.

    Also if you can talk to an academic adviser at the university, particular one in the same department as your course, you should speak to them as well. They will be able to give you specific advice once they know your situation and your previous knowledge/marks.

    If you can do the above, I'd recommend it.
  4. Aug 15, 2012 #3
    Re: 4 Classes of Math/Physics/Engineering a Quarter -- Too Much?

    You'll be fine if you have the work ethic and time management skills.

    I generally took 15-18 hours of coursework each semester, with 4/5 courses being STEM courses through my chemical engineering curriculum. I had time to hang out with friends, etc. It's all about budgeting your time. Keep track of things in a planner! Get things done ahead of time.
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