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The motivation just isnt there anymore

  1. Oct 8, 2005 #1

    ranger

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    The motivation just isnt there anymore......

    Hi all,

    I have a problem. I dont feel that my motive for studying is as strong as it use to be. When I started my 1st year in engineering, it wasnt that hard for me to pick up a physics book and read. Now (in second year) I'm like "yea, mayb tomorrow. " But tomorrow never really comes. If it does, it doesnt come at full blow. I'm not really goofing off or anything of that sort. I still study to past tests, and I get good grades. But thats all, I just study to pass. Before it was the "relentless pursuit of knowledge." Now I just study to get by. Thats just not the way it works, you have to go beyond the classroom notes. I think my problem is that I'm not motivated enough. How do you guys stay motivated?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 8, 2005 #2

    mezarashi

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    Wow, how do you become unmotivated? There's so much to learn, and so much to understand about the physics of things. When you don't have a goal, it can quickly get old, but what if you have a goal. You want to be good at something, be a real expert at something, and you yearn to learn more about it. Maybe thoughts about gradschool?

    I used to lose my focus once during a semester where I was taking 10 subjects where I was just burnt out having to learn too much of things I didn't even want to know. But now that I'm taking less, I always feel the urge to drop by the library and read something random in the physics corner in hopes of being able to see the world from even a larger perspective. I don't know, but I find the pursuit of knowledge to be enjoyable.
     
  4. Oct 9, 2005 #3

    FredGarvin

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    All I can say is that second year still isn't into the meat and potatoes of what you are going to really learn. The first two years for me was a lot of pre requisites with a sprinkling of basic engineering stuff mixed in. If you still have the desire to become an engineer, I'd say hang in there and slog your way through it. My interest (and my gpa) really peaked in my last two years when I was concentrating on my major.

    I'd say hang in there as best you can. I think in the end you'll be very glad you did.
     
  5. Oct 9, 2005 #4

    ranger

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    I guess I'll have to hang in there. I really have not given gradschool much thought. Isnt a bachelor enough to land a job in the engineering field?

    Thanks for the input guys. I suddenly have the urge to read up on circuits :biggrin:
     
  6. Oct 10, 2005 #5

    Danger

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    Hey Ranger;
    Speaking as one who never graduated high-school and has regretted it ever since, I strongly urge you to never give up. I had something like your problem, but far moreso, because of the ADD which I didn't know that I had. A few really horrid teachers along the way didn't help any. I seems that perhaps you should apply more formally structured study habits. Set specific times aside for different aspects of your schoolwork (intersperse them to avoid boredom or burnout), and stick to the schedule no matter how much you don't want to at the time.
    If it's a matter of you no longer wanting to pursue your specific subject matter, then by all means consider switching courses. Just don't leave school without something to show for it. I suspect that you don't currently have a passion for the field, if you intent to leave at whatever level you can simply obtain a job with.
     
  7. Oct 10, 2005 #6

    FredGarvin

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    Just to make sure, I meant my first two years of undergrad work, i.e. freshman and sophomore years. You do get to the good stuff in your undergrad. It is usually in your junior and senior years (from what I have seen).
     
  8. Oct 11, 2005 #7

    Astronuc

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    Opportunities are limited for one with only a bachelor's degree. As baccalaureate covers the basics.

    The idea of a Master's program is to start doing research, usually under supervision, but often in an area that is relatively new and which contributes to the field.

    A PhD program involves self-directed research which contributes something new to the field.

    One can get a job in engineering with a bachelor's degree, but more opportunities are available for an advanced degree. Besides, given a choice between an employee with a Master's or PhD and a bachelors degree, the higher level (and more interesting) positions will probably go to one with the advanced degree.

    Keep learning.

    If one feels one is losing motivation - take a break without disrupting your academic program, i.e. I don't mean drop out or disappear for days or weeks, but just take a walk and relax for an hour or so.
     
  9. Oct 11, 2005 #8

    ranger

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    I had no idea it was like that. So therefore it is recommended that I go to grad school?

    Is that kind of like working in R&D?
     
  10. Oct 11, 2005 #9

    Astronuc

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    Engineering can be very competitive, especially in high tech. If possible, get a Masters degree at least. Also, look into joining an engineering or technical society. For one, you will find a good network, and 2) you can learn about the latest developments in your field.

    Yes. In engineering there is application and research. By application, I refer to performing an engineering task as in designing something (component, process, product, system) using current technology, and also technical support. In research, one is pushing the state-of-the-art - with a new product, a new component or device, a new method, etc.

    The best possibility is to move back and forth between application and research. Makes life interesting and challenging at times. :biggrin:

    In this day and age, engineers are sometimes treated like a commodity by management. So you might decide in 20-30 years to go out on your own. You will find that it helps to have a Master's or PhD when people are looking for an expert.
     
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