I want to become an extraordinary physicist. (I wrote top physicist because it's easier to understand, not for competitive reasons. My goal is to contribute as much as possible to physics, not to specifically be the top physicist) However, I find many obstructions to my goal such as having to take courses in the humanities, lots of time-consuming homework which doesn't make me more valuable and also having no choice but to take like 6 courses which I've already self studied (I'm on quarter system, I already self-studied single variable calculus and Introductory Physics: Mechanics, E&M and quantum&optic but have to take the courses anyway) I can't take credit for those courses: CLEP, APs,credit by examination or asking special permission don't work. I wonder how Olympiad participants tackle college: from their experience, what is a set of strategies used to tackle college? I mention Olympiad because these people know a whole lot of college stuff and I'm guessing they have to take those courses anyway. I have read lots on stuff, basically the only stuff I can relate is Terence Tao and Feynman. I have no idea how Terence Tao zipped through college: I know it's kind of impossible for me because of all the mandatory stuff getting in my way. What I hate is that I'm forced to do so many time consuming things in college which don't make me more valuable as a physicist. How do I get around this problem? I probably want to ask this question to a professor at my college in the future, but I hope that the answers here would help me. Thanks! I find it scary to simply 'not do homework because it's low percentage' because it's graded on a curve.