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Question about course load

  1. Jul 6, 2015 #1
    I'm currently a high school student. For background, I finished Calc BC soph year and I've taken Calc III, DE, PDE, Lin. Alg, and an intro to proofs course this past year at a local 4 year university (earned A's in all). I'll be a senior next year taking Real Analysis, Intro to Geometry, and doing an independent study of Abstract Algebra in the fall. All of these are supposed to be fairly proof intensive, and I've only been exposed to proofs in my intro to proofs course (All math classes before that were very 'cookbook' style).
    So I'm wondering: how much time I should be expecting to devote to these classes? Would this seem fairly doable to a standard math major? I've been informed by some that taking RA and AA together would be very difficult (especially since Abs. Alg won't be in a formal class, and I've got Geometry to deal with), so I just want to make sure I don't get overwhelmed.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 6, 2015 #2


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    It's a very standard course load but honestly what's the point of questions like these? How are we supposed to know what is and isn't overwhelming for you? Different people handle different levels of course load difficulties. You just have to experiment.
  4. Jul 6, 2015 #3
    The point is I don't want to take these advanced courses if there's a high probability I won't pull an A, and I don't want to experiment to find out if I can or not. The range of courses one can or cannot handle is usually consistent among most people, to a certain extent... I guess I would rather know if a 'standard' undergraduate math student with the same background would be able to do it, as I would put myself at least at that level. I might add that those aren't the only courses, just the math ones (although my question is more concerned with learning a large amount of mathematics in a short amount of time, I guess).
  5. Jul 7, 2015 #4
    This is a horrible mindset. Are you trying to prepare yourself for further schooling, or to make your transcript look pretty?

    That's not true. At all.

    Honestly, like the above poster said, only you can know what you are up to. Especially taking an independent study in abstract algebra (which, IMHO, is a very difficult course), it really depends on the professor/book you are working with. If you are not good at proofs, you will find that semester to be hell. If you are okay and don't mind doing them, then you will be fine. But we cannot tell you what is too much for you to handle.
  6. Jul 7, 2015 #5
    I wouldn't think it's a horrible mindset in the slightest, seeing as how it's pointless to bite off more than you can chew and end up with both a poor understanding of the subject and a bad grade to show for it (in such core courses to my intended major, a mediocre understanding of the material would very bad). I am planning on taking these courses regardless of what was said here simply because I absolutely love mathematics, by the way.

    Also, I was referring to how most people I know only take 2-3 courses in their major, and almost never all upper division courses. Some may be outliers and be able to do only 1-2 a semester, while others may be able to take 4-5, but both parties are in the minority, at least where I'm dual enrolling.
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