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Completely demoralized

  1. Oct 23, 2007 #1

    I am a computer science major at Texas A&M in College Station. I have an internship and now that I have worked a while in the field (software engineering), I have realized one thing-> I don't remember anything from any of my computer science classes. Not one. I have a 3.659 gpa and I'm in the honors program and what not. This semester marks a huge change for me, I can hardly bring myself to do any school work anymore. I am guaranteed to drop to at least a 3.2 this semester. I'm sick of learning about big-O notation for the THIRD semester in a row. I learned it in my algorithms class, I learned it again in my discrete math class, and now I'm re-learning it again in my algorithms 2 class. I'm sick of learning this stuff. In fact, I don't even pay attention anymore so I'm not learning anything. I have never hated computer science so much in my life. I am a junior so it would be really pointless to change majors.

    I hate to say it, but it seems like most of my fellow students don't care too much about anything. I have had too many group projects done by myself. I am honestly considering quiting school entirely. I can't pay for this anymore. Almost all of my knowledge comes from google.com. I miss the good days of freshman year when I didn't have computer science classes, I only had physics and chemistry and math classes.

    Anyone have any advice to keep making good grades? As I write this I have the flu and the only class I still go to is math (partial differential equations with applications to physics). I'm not sure of how much your grades matter when you graduate, but it looks pretty grim for me now. I love coding and solving problems and designing solutions and making web applications. I hate listening to things I heard freshman year. Basically it feels like I never got passed that year, I'm learning the same stuff and I see the same kids still not knowing the same information. I wish I could start over and major in physics or math.

    What do I do? To summarize: I can't do this work anymore. I already did it all freshman year and not only that but I actually get depressed when people ask me for help and I look at their code. (I've never seen more reduntant code in my life) It seems to me that 100% and more of the material of my college degree could be learned easily in 1 year (probably way less) of googling around and buying some good books.

    I feel horrible. I write this while on 2 monitors, the first monitor I'm on the my school's web turn in program downloading the source to my freshman projects so I can copy paste for this year. On the 2nd monitor I write this and am paying my last semester's tuition.

    Any ideas? If you have read this far, you have probably come to the conclusion that I don't even know what I'm asking. I don't know what to do or what to think.

  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 23, 2007 #2
    My advice:
    1. Take care of yourself so that you can recover properly from this flu. I always feel worse about school when I'm sick than when I'm not.
    2. If looking at other people's bad code depresses you, then don't look at it.
    3. If computer science is no longer interesting to you, find something that is interesting and pursue that.
  4. Oct 23, 2007 #3


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    You can afford to be optimistic. Your skills in programming and problem analysis will help you in most other science courses; so you could change major fields and your computer programming skills will be very helpful. Physics, Chemistry, and Engineering use computer technology. You can often find a way to computerize some data analysis or data management.
  5. Oct 23, 2007 #4
    There is a lot of overlap between CS and Electrical/Computer Engineering. You could think about looking into that program if you're serious about being sick of coding. All of your math and physics courses would transfer as would your legislatively required classes like history and government. I would bet that some of your coding classes would transfer over as well. At UT Austin, our EE program has required intro to programming and data structures classes as well as two assembly courses that I'm sure could be replaced by their corresponding CS coding courses.

    I was going to do CS until I realized I absolutely hated coding. I got into EE and I've loved every course I've taken. That's just me though, your milage may vary.
  6. Oct 23, 2007 #5
    I don't understand some things in your message.

    You said you worked for awhile as a Software Engineer on an internship...how long was the internship? Did you do poorly at the internship? Is that why you say you forgot everything you learned?

    I've been co-oping with IBM and I haven't used anything I learned in my Computer Science classes other than what I've taught myself. Nothing dealing with analysis of jack.

    The thing that helps me code at IBM is just problem solving skills in general. It doesn't matter what language, if you can solve it on a piece of paper you can code it.

    It sounds like your displeased with your school's computer science degree rather than computer science.

    You say you love to code and problem solve, but during your college classes all you seem to be doing is analysis of algorithms. Which I also hate with a passion.

    If you hated your job (internship) then I would recommend changing majors. If you just hate your classes, I wouldn't recommend changing majors becuase of that.

    Hating classes compared to hating what you do out in the real world are 2 different things.

    I hate my classes at my college, its all theory and no coding. But I love when I get a coding project at work.
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