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The best approach to get your prerequisites(Math, Sciences, English)

  1. Jun 25, 2014 #1

    I am a 20 year old looking to work on my prerequisites for something like computer science. The problems are that:

    1) Commuting is going to be difficult, I don't currently have a car. Otherwise busing is 40 minutes.

    2) Work may conflict, but I can quit if necessary.

    Are there integrative solutions, such as working online with a tutor on a weekly bases? I am interested in your own solutions and anecdotes here.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 25, 2014 #2


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    Your local community college may offer solutions for your situation; I would take the bus ride and meet with a counselor there.

    One of our sons had a similar predicament; he learned to do homework on the bus ride!

    The other approach is self-study, though a tutor may have to be available from time-to-time. Then when you are confident of the material, you can "test out" of that subject. Check with the local community college to see which courses for which this is possible.

    A good online site for math is "Paul's Online Math Notes": http://tutorial.math.lamar.edu/

    But the most important element is your motivation and effort! So somebody to talk to, and perhaps work with, can be very useful. Best if it is a fellow student, because then it is free.
  4. Jun 25, 2014 #3
    Conveniently enough, I do have a few 'fellow students' to work with. I think I will try to talk to an academic adviser soon.

    The self-study approach with "testing out" sounds good, I think I can prepare for the fall semester and then do assessments and work from there..
  5. Jun 25, 2014 #4
    Becareful with the testing out option. Some universities require that classes be taken with a letter grade. To my knowledge UCLA and Berkley want a letter grade. Please correct me if im wrong. I am also on the bus amd it takes me an hour to get to school. I read my txtbook on the bus. While I am reading say a mathbook i look at the section and try to get an intutive feel. Then when I have time to sit somewhere I solve problems.
  6. Jun 25, 2014 #5
    Correctipn on my part. You can test out of classes. Ir for example a chemistry, physics, englisj prep class that prepares you for college introduction level class.

    You can also do it for math. Say you are in intermediate algebra but you self studied and you can do pre calculus propblems really well. You can test out the remedial math and go into a calculus 1 class.

    BUT YOU CANNOT test out of calculus 1 because that is a class the unvieraity is asking for.

    Hope i was clear.
  7. Jun 25, 2014 #6


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    1. Carpool with classmates if possible.

    2. Don't quit right away, ideally, you'll want to work while going to CC, save as much money as feasible so when you go to university you won't go as deep into debt.

    I'm wholly against online/testing out of courses/ and what not. I believe there is something tangible to gain by physically attending classes; well, most classes.

    Practice for the assesment testing like you planned, then go from there.
  8. Jun 25, 2014 #7


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    And books are very expensive, it'll help to be working. Just look at the prices lately, you can easily pay $100-$200 per subject on books.
  9. Jun 25, 2014 #8
    I bus 3 hours a day to my community college because it is worth it to me. I am not sure if Financial Aid is a option for you, but this allows me to work much less and go to school so this may be an option for you. I wish you the best and hope you stay in school. Even one class a semester will put you forward if that is the most you can do.
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