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Courses Course Schedule: Feasible?

  1. Aug 16, 2006 #1

    Here are the courses I am planning to take for the fall semester of my freshman year:

    Introduction to the Science of Biology
    Film Aesthetics/Analysis
    FYS(freshman seminar): Women in Film and Literature
    Introduction to Proof Techniques
    Calculus 2

    They are all 4 credits, making a total of 20 credits for the first semester. Anybody think that this is a manageable schedule? And what exactly is a credit hour? Basically, would I have to do 60 hours of outside work per week, or 8-9 hours of work per day in total for all the classes (not including class time)?

    Any input is appreciated.

  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 16, 2006 #2
    I think if you are dedicated enough, it is possible. Last year in high school, with my job, I worked a total of around 60 hours, and there was still plenty of time to do other things. This year, I will be taking 7 classes for a total of 16 credits, so I may have a crowded schedule, but it will be easy work. Your classes looks like you will have a good amount of work, but it shouldn't be too difficult as long as you don't let yourself fall behind.
  4. Aug 16, 2006 #3


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    The two film classes are likely intellectually easy, but will probably require a good bit of writing. Some people can breeze through a problem set in a calc class, but need four days to write a paper. If you're one of those people, take care to take papers seriously. The advantage of the film classes is that they are likely targeted at freshmen, and will not require any serious self-study skills.

    The two math classes are not really freshman-oriented, and will likely leave you in the cold if you're not able to discipline yourself strongly enough to keep on top of the problem sets and exam preparations.

    Biology is going to be a rote-memorization kind of class. You're going to have to read, memorize, and regurgitate a significant amount of material. If you're very good at this kind of work, don't worry about it. On the other hand, if you think that kind of studying is difficult, it may well make you run screaming.

    This schedule requires pretty much every kind of learning style, all mixed together -- you'll have to write papers, do problem sets, learn from books, and memorize lots of words and diagrams. If you have trouble "switching gears" between the sort of work you'll do for one class and another, this might prove tricky for you.

    My advice is that you take your first couple of semesters rather easy -- no more than 15 hours or so. You can certainly sign up for more classes than you intend to actually complete, then drop one before the financial and credit drop dates. That way, you can remain in classes which you know you'll enjoy the most, and do the best in.

    Since you've said you're on partial scholarship, contingent on your grades, my recommendation is that your primary goal should be on maintaining the highest GPA possible, not in getting out of school as quickly as possible. A good GPA will present many options for grad school and employment, while getting out early pretty much gets no special consideration.

    - Warren
  5. Aug 17, 2006 #4
    anyone recommend tape recording lectures?
  6. Aug 17, 2006 #5
    I think you will do great. Judging from your other posts on here you seem dedicated and highly motivated. Just don't get discouraged if things seem difficult, if something is difficult, keep trying and you will get it. With hard work you can get straight A's. To me, your courseload isn't light, but yet it isn't "too much" either, it's manageable if you work hard.

    You may find certain things in courses hard, and other students may find them easy, just remember that this doesn't mean your stupid, this is just a consequence of the fact that certain people find certain things easier.

    Just to use Calculus 2 as an example since you are taking it. I took this course a few years ago and I had a really hard time with volumes of revolution, yet some of my classmates thought it was easy. Then when we covered infinite series, I found it to be a breeze, and fascinating as well, yet others found it hard and tedious. So just remember just because something is difficult, doesn't mean you don't have the ability to master it and do well, it just means you have to work harder. I guess what I'm trying to say is, if you get stuck, keep trying, just keep plugging away at it, and you will get it. Goodluck with college, and remember, by having confidence in your ability and working hard you can do anything. You will learn your limits in time; i.e., how much is too much for you.

    I just read chroots post, and he makes a good point, if you are concerned, taking just 4 courses might be a good idea, this will be easier, and it is especially useful so you can get a feel for things your first semester and how much work is required. As an example, my first semester I took 3 courses and was working full time and found it to be a TON of work, but I managed to get A's.
    It's almost 5am here so I hope my post sounds somewhat coherent.
  7. Aug 17, 2006 #6
    thank you all for your comments and suggestions.
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