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Am I taking on too much

  1. Jun 21, 2012 #1
    I'm working a bachelors in physics. I signed up for 16 credits. I five credit Calculus Class, a 5 credit physics class, a 3 credit English class, and a 3 credit German class. I'm involved in a lot of things outside of school mostly volunteer, but I don't have a paying job. Am I taking on too much?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 21, 2012 #2
    That seems very manageable.
  4. Jun 21, 2012 #3
    Nah, you'll be fine.

    German is so much fun, I hope you have a good time with it. :)
  5. Jun 21, 2012 #4
    It's doable. I did physics, calculus, and chemistry simultaneously, and it was something of a breeze work-wise (although it was a pain trying to come to grips with it all). Just don't fall into the trap of thinking the foreign language is a joke. It's not - especially German. It's a hard language with pretty weird grammar rules. But I think you'll be okay.
  6. Jun 21, 2012 #5
    I found German to be just the opposite, grammar-wise. The rules are very straight forward, and compared to English there are hardly any exceptions. The small amount of exceptions are easily memorized, and the vocabulary is often just English words with a German accent, haha. It also helped that I had an incredible German professor from Ulm and her enthusiasm for the language and culture was infectious. I found Spanish and French WAY harder and weirder than German, I guess because it's more on the Latin side of things than Germanic (which English is), and Latin is just... ridiculous, grammar-wise.

    Also, just to put it out there, if you ever need help with German, PM me, I've had a couple semesters and have been working on it each day this summer to refresh and learn more vocab.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012
  7. Jun 21, 2012 #6
    ^ That's quite funny. I found just the opposite in my studies of French :) The French vocabulary, descended from Latin as it is, does match up with the many Latin-derived words found in English. With minimal knowledge of the language acquired over very sparse study and no interaction with natives, I was able to read French fairly easily. I suppose it helps that things like English's word order is more similar to French than German.

    In truth, I find it remarkable that English is not designated a hybrid of Romance and Germanic, as it doesn't fit with either German or Romance. With the way people talk about English and German being interrelated, you'd think they would be at least as mutually intelligible as Dutch and German. Now there's you a language that's just German with an accent! :D
  8. Jun 21, 2012 #7
    Yeah, I can definitely understand it logically when people deal with them better, so I don't know why I have a problem with the Romance languages! Actually I think it might be the WAY it's spoken as well, French and Spanish are spoken quickly and the words run together, whereas German separates each word like we do in English. (Obviously there will be the fast-talkers like there will be anywhere, but it seems less so in German than Spanish/French.)

    I learn words based on sight, also... when I hear a word I have to be able to picture it and spell it, which I could rarely ever do in French and Spanish. I can't just hear and repeat, I have to visualize it. German spelling is pretty obvious and pronounced clearly even with words I've never heard.

    But maybe I just have weird learning techniques. :p
  9. Jun 21, 2012 #8
    That's another way English is "weird". As far as I'm aware, and please correct me if otherwise, I don't think German possesses anything similar to English's contraction system. I believe we inherited that from French, which absolutely loves to do just that (on a far grander scale, too). For instance: j'aime --> superposition of "je/I" onto "aime/first person verb of love", for the purpose of preventing a hiatus of two vowel sounds. We even have a spiritual carry-over of that in the form of "a/an".

    I do agree about spelling. God love the French, but it can be hard to know what they're saying when they're actually speaking the language. However, their written form is very consistent. It's refreshing when coming from an English background.
  10. Jun 21, 2012 #9
    German has contractions to a certain extent (geht es = geht's, an dem = am, in dem = im, etc.) but I don't think it's as much as we do, and definitely not as much as French does.

    I think German does it out of "laziness" rather than, for example, being averse to particular sounds (or lack of). :p
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