Adult Content Warning

This community may contain adult content that is not suitable for minors. By closing this dialog box or continuing to navigate this site, you certify that you are 18 years of age and consent to view adult content.

THAT Class

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by cynismus, Mar 15, 2011.

  1. PIMPTRESS

    PIMPTRESS
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    79
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    3,239
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Focus: In school I was definitely challenged in math, algebra and calculus. This can likely be credited to the fact that my mother, a 10th grade dropout, felt she could give me all the education I really needed before "The End" arrived. Fuck, I wish I was kidding. So I was in and out of school and just could not get it. I remember being put back in public school in 8th grade after four years of mom's education and I couldn't do multiplication. I didn't even know what it was. Pathetic.

    All until a badass teacher tutored me on his own time and suddenly it was all so clear. Just in time for my mother to take me out of school again.


    Alt Focus: Writing, I taught myself to read when I was about 4, I read very quickly and my comprehension was off the charts. Probably because I was reading very adult material from a young age. I guess not many children aare reading Psychology manuals and the like.

    I remember in 4th grade be assessed with a college reading level and having to read and do reports on different books from the class because I read A Wrinkle In Time in one night.(This was the class assignment that was supposed to take a month to cover and understand the stupid fucking thing.) The teacher was pissed about it, for some reason. I think she hated that my vocabulary was too advanced. Weird.

    I was also very good in Art, a few of my oil and mixed media pieces were displayed at some mall in Texas, some 20 years ago...
     
  2. dubyu tee eff

    dubyu tee eff
    Expand Collapse
    Thinks he has a chance with Christina Hendricks...

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    1,383
    Focus: I always thought of myself as a Math kid. I took all the toughest possible math classes in high school and smoked all of them, including the Calc AB AP test. I got to college and flew through multivariate calc, linear algebra, differential equations. I was even considering being a Math major. Then I took Number Theory. It was my first exposure to the world of discrete math and a math class based largely around proofs. It remains to this the single hardest class I've ever taken. I'm proud to say I have never withdrawn from a course, but I came damn close for that class after I got a 50'something on the midterm. It remains the only C I've ever gotten in my college career.

    Alt. Focus: Taking Economics for the first time felt like I had one of those moments you see in movies where the lights get really bright and you hear people going "aaahhhhhhhh." While the mechanics of graduate econ are pretty tough (since it is essentially all math), my economics intuition is still superb. I can visualize all the graphs and curve shifts, and am excellent at the "if this happens to A, the what happens to B" analysis that most of undergraduate economics is based around. Although I have a research assistantship right now, which means I don't have to TA, I frequently take over friends' lectures for them, just because I miss that shit so much. Reminds me of when econ used to be a blast.

    As an aside, for most of my life I was a very mediocre writer. Then while dating this one girl(who was a superb writer), I watched her write a paper and looked it over for typos and stuff for her and something just sort of clicked. I completely stole her style of writing, and all of a sudden my writing was being praised by every professor out there. While obviously this implies nothing for creative/fictional writing, it makes me think that anyone can be good at writing formal papers. It seems like there a specific style that anyone can emulate. Has anyone had a similar experience to this?
     
  3. Guy Fawkes

    Guy Fawkes
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    1,207
    Location:
    Nor'east USA
    I literally never ever ever studied for tests, homework, etc all the way through college. I just paid attention in class, refused to do homework, and still passed everything with an A or high B.

    Then I met a college business calculus class that required post class studying and I was horrible. I would work for hours and think I had it down only to have everything go out the window when it came time for testing. I think I simply worked the same chapter of problems into retention and then when a new one was presented I failed miserably.

    Fuck calculus.
     
  4. scotchcrotch

    scotchcrotch
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    80
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Messages:
    2,446
    Location:
    ATL
    I never struggled with a single math class, rarely did homework, and got assraped by calculus. Fuck calculus, my only D in my academic history.

    Organic chemistry is also a bitch I'd like to forget. Average grade on my final was a 14% that the professor had us convinced there was no curve so we were all pulling our hair out. In the end, I passed the final after a week of studying, getting partial credit on one question, and passing.


    Seems to me, the harder the course, the less likely the professor (or TA) is to help. Probably because they're pestered by every student trying to understand this shit.
     
  5. MoreCowbell

    MoreCowbell
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    14
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    4,185
    Semi-related rant:

    People who say they "just don't get math," throw their hands in the air, and give up annoy the shit out of me. At least at the most elementary level, it is a basic requirement of being a functional member of modern civil society.

    I'm not talking about those who study for hours, with only a mediocre grade as a reward. I get the frustration to trying and trying with no avail, and that we don't all have the same natural proclivities. This isn't about you.

    For some reason, there's a certain subset of Western population who believes that math is unnecessary and make no serious effort to "get it," and think this is OK and should be sanctioned.

    Consider: what if, any time someone suggested or demanded that i read something, I said "I just don't get words..." and demanded to be excused from it? It'd be ridiculous, and no one would tolerate it.

    For some reason, reluctance or refusal to do even the simplest math is seen as socially acceptable, and even chuckle-worthy ("Oh man, long division? Without a calculator? That's over my head! *guffaw guffaw*").

    I acknowledge that there are a small subset of people who have legitimate cognitive issues with math (there's a few here, I remember from the last discussion). But there's also a small subset of dyslexic people. That doesn't mean we stop expecting the general public to read at a basic level.


    No, you don't have to understand calculus (although I'd recommend it). But you shouldn't balk at simple algebra. It's a basic life skill, and your deficiency is just that. A deficiency. Not a personality quirk, so stop treating it like one.
     
  6. Frank

    Frank
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    6
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    3,351
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I didn't mention this in my previous post, but for my last two years of college I lived with a ridiculously hard working and creative English major. I didn't bring much to the table in terms of the the flow of papers but my grammar was better than his and I proofread all his papers. Like you I began writing much better and nailed all my papers during my last year of school. As harshly as it would be received I think that it would be a good exercise for teachers to have everyone read the best three papers in the class for every assignment, I can't see how we don't develop better writers that way.
     
  7. Sherwood

    Sherwood
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    562
    Fucking Accounting.

    As a business major (marketing) I had to take two accounting classes. For whatever reason I just could NOT learn that shit. I mean, some of it was effort I'm sure... ok, A LOT of it was effort, but for someone who usually learned easily I just couldn't pick that crap up easily.
     
  8. MoreCowbell

    MoreCowbell
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    14
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    4,185
    Focus: I had no knack for foreign language classes. I did OK in them, but it was typically my lowest grade. Given time, I could write and respond fine, because I am reasonably good at expressing myself and could remember the vocabulary about as well as one would expect. The problem came when I was expected to do anything at conversation speed. Despite 5 years of Spanish, I never learned to "think in Spanish." Any sentence that I ever wrote was originally composed in English in my head, mentally translated, and then written/spoken. The same went for reading: everything was read, translated, then interpreted. This works fine for simple sentence construction, but eventually becomes untenable.

    Alt. focus: I've found (and the older I get, the worse it is) that I do much better at "process" classes than "content" classes. Hence I well in math and econ, and better in chemistry/physics than in biology. The sorts of classes that I could excel in were those where I was expected to be able to solve a certain class of problems with various taught methods.

    This actually seems to be a trend with a few other people in this thread. I'm great at "how" classes, but not as good at "what" classes. This is actually kind of odd in some ways, since in every day life my head is filled with useless minutia about every topic imaginable.

    I'm currently in an Intro to Psych class in my second semester of senior year because it interests me but I could never find a schedule spot for it before. It's an into-level class for a relatively non-challenging major, full of freshmen. Should be easy, right? Wrong. It will probably be the lowest grade I ever got in college.

    Those freshmen are kicking my ass, because frankly, they have energy and motivation to devote time to blunt force memorization that, as a second semester senior, there's no way I'll be able to muster up. I'm interested and and probably have a more sophisticated understanding than they do, but when it comes to making index cards with vocabulary words, those little fuckers will beat me every time. Fucking freshmen.
     
  9. audreymonroe

    audreymonroe
    Expand Collapse
    The most powerful cervix... in the world...

    Reputation:
    546
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    Messages:
    2,859
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    The big class I always excused myself for getting a less-than-desired grade in was math. I was actually in the excelled math group through Sophomore year of High school, but after I got the basics and some algebra down it just stopped making sense to me. I have a mental block when it comes to numbers. Once you start explaining something to me only in terms of numbers I just blank. Like, I'll see that little spinning Mac wheel in my head instead of being able to figure anything out. I haven't taken a math class since Junior year of high school. This translated into not doing the best in the more math-y sciences. I was fine (low 90s) with about half of the science classes I took (bio, environmental science, psych - which I was actually awesome in), and then getting around math-level grades (80s) with chem and physics.

    Basically everything else in high school came naturally to me. If I got below a 98 on my report card in English, it would be a bad grade. I usually got 95 or above for all the various social studies classes, art, and French.

    I either tested out of the gen eds I didn't want to take in college, or they had interesting enough courses for the ones I had left, so I don't really know how to answer for a higher level. Although I was surprised that I had a knack for business when I started learning about it independently and then took an Intro to Business class as an elective.
     
  10. Disgustipated

    Disgustipated
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    969
    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    I sucked at woodwork and metalwork. It's not that I couldn't make sturdy, working things; it's that I couldn't make them "pretty" enough. Slightly off angles, burrs, marks, ragged lines.... it was pretty easy to tell my work. I think this was a product of learning stuff from an early age from my dad. He didn't care how ugly something was, as long as it held together. And, I just couldn't get out of that habit.

    So I'd never get anything higher than a B in either other those classes. I just had a mental block.

    It was pretty much the same in technical drawing, but that teacher realised than some people are just not neat freaks and let the graphite smudges slide so long as the lines were accurate. (I'm that old, this was pre-CAD).
     
  11. dubyu tee eff

    dubyu tee eff
    Expand Collapse
    Thinks he has a chance with Christina Hendricks...

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    1,383
    Once you get to calculus, numbers disappear from math anyway, so who knows maybe you'll be good at it again.
     
  12. Kubla Kahn

    Kubla Kahn
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    708
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    11,263
    I can't be the only one thinking people mentioning accounting are nuts right? I mean Ill get into my problems with math below but the two accounting classes I took for business school were a fucking BREEZE compared to the calc heavy econ and finance classes I took. Sure there were some parts of managerial accounting that weren't simple, depreciating assets and the like, but mostly you just had to set up given numbers on a fucking ledger and do BASIC 3rd grade math. I wasn't motivated by grades like the concept of the topic post implies (aka Im a fucking slacker) so the two B+s I got in my accounting classes without even trying was the best math grades I got in college.

    Focus Math. Never was exceptional with it, never got the harder concepts of it, never motivated enough to go beyond just getting through it. Sad because I see the benefit of knowing the applications of any sort of math. The best, most inspiring professors, as well as every truly brilliant successful person I know, "understands" math and are able to breeze through it and know the ins and outs of the concepts.

    I had two problems, one even as hard as I tried I could never make the connections and I was just poor with numbers. Two, complete lack of motivation. I use to bust my ass in college, for all my algebra, calcs, stats, quantitative analysis, finance, econ etc I would get teacher or TA help or otherwise be at the math center for hours on end getting help. This was just so I wasn't failing the classes. Some classes were easier than others and Id do better in those. Though I eventually did put a lot of effort into my math classes I never shot for more than the meaty 2.0 average.

    I think my main problem can sort of be illustrated from the tiger mother thread. My parents didn't push me at all and basically left it up to me to do well. As long as I wasn't failing or getting Ds I wouldnt hear a peep out of them about school. The concept of getting a good education through college was there but not strictly enforced, at least not strictly enough. They never pushed me to excel and I could have cared less about taking the ACT/SAT or pushing myself into hard yet beneficial classes. So I never pushed myself (I did take the act/sats but didnt prepare at all unlike my friends whose parents pushed the shit out of them). Left to my own devices when I was in high school Id just have rather played video games and downloading internet porn. In college it turned into partying and downloading even more porn. So I never really had a good foundation of studying, doing homework, or test taking. I barely made it out of college with a 2.9 (just low enough not to list on a resume baby!).

    I guess I could also second art if you consider that a real class, just seems more like PE in terms of an easy A with little effort. But technically speaking I fucking suck at anything related to creating art. Ive been trying to draw a decent Homer Simpson in every single school notebook Ive ever had after Matt Greoning did a 30 second art lesson commercial on how to draw him. After YEARS of endless practice (and inattention to the class lectures) I have yet to actually make a decent looking Homer. I can get his head alright but as soon as I start on his body it looks all fucked up and 2nd gradeish. BULLSHIT!
     
  13. KIMaster

    KIMaster
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,870
    Bizarrely enough, it was biology for me.

    It doesn't make any sense considering my normal strengths and weaknesses; my memory is outstanding, and the math is an absolute cinch. And that's basically all that AP Biology as well as my university's first-year intro class are; rote memorization and basic math, never getting beyond a first-order separable differential equation.

    And yet, I was really awful at it, especially considering science is my specialty. I would constantly misunderstand what the various proteins would do, have a difficult time with learning the mechanisms, etc. I even spent more time on it than I did other, much harder classes that I was acing, but to no avail.

    In high school, I got a B+ both semesters, but that's largely because of grade inflation. In college, I took the class "pass fail", only needing the equivalent of a C- to pass...and I just barely managed to do so.
     
  14. Tim

    Tim
    Expand Collapse
    Disturbed

    Reputation:
    56
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    310
    This was actually true for me. I wasn't able to do a pull up until I was 15 or so so I always had a sick stomach when those physical challenge assessments came around. I guess I grew into my body in high school and finally was able to do a normal number of pull ups. Plus, I was never good at the traditional ball sports so not only did gym plague me but so did recess. I did play soccer and ran track in high school so my body finally caught up but PE was torture for me in elementary and junior high.

    As said previously, foreign language plagued me as well. I took French in high school and college, fuck those accents you have to put over letters. You know what I meant, why does it matter if I leave out the accent grave or aigu?
     
  15. Stealth

    Stealth
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    4
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    857
    At University as an undergraduate I did quite well in Engineering, Maths and Science type subjects but had to do about four Law related subjects over a period of four years, which I really, really sucked at and barely passed.
     
  16. lostalldoubt86

    lostalldoubt86
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    20
    Joined:
    May 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,031
    Location:
    Earth, The Universe
    The first class that popped into my head was gym. It's not that it was particularly hard, it was more that there was zero structure to the class. They would take roll and then tell us to keep busy. We had to be doing something athletic (walking around the gym didn't count) for the entire period. I could never get anything higher than a B in gym because I would occasionally bitch about the free structure of the class.

    As far as academic classes, I would have to say geometry. I never caught on. I still only understand half of the shit that goes on in that class.


    The class that I excelled at was creative writing. I did so well, I earned editor of the lit mag without even applying. The teacher sought me out and asked me to be editor, a position that was usually decided by student votes.
     
  17. Beer Me

    Beer Me
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2009
    Messages:
    122
    Location:
    Manitoba, Canada
    Focus: Math and Science, all sciences.

    Antifocus: Accounting, yeah, I know. I suck at math but I had the top mark in my accounting class. I don't know how that's possible. It was soooo easy though. Also, I did much better in French class than English.
     
  18. Lasersailor

    Lasersailor
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2009
    Messages:
    225
    THAT Class for me is pretty simple. It's any and every class that has no applicable use to me in the future. For example, I had to take 3 levels of calculus above and beyond what little calculus I needed for my career. It was one of the harder things I've ever done in my life, trying to muster up the attention and effort to even show up. Every calculus problem I solved was first greeted by that loud whisper in my head, "You're never going to use this information ever again..."

    The Opposite of THAT Class for me is any class that does have an applicable use for my future career. Any pertinent information or even anything uttered by the professor that even may be useful is memorized instantly with little mental effort.


    But in a more humorous note, with this divide in my brain between useful stuff, and useless stuff, I have retained every ounce of knowledge learned from Fencing, despite never having fenced outside of the class. It may be necessary to whip people with thin swords in my future.
     
  19. moddiddle

    moddiddle
    Expand Collapse
    Village Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2009
    Messages:
    29
    My career with Calculus, Chemistry, and Physics started in 2003 when I was a sophomore/Junior in high school and didn't end until just this past summer as I'm finishing up a 2nd bachelor's in Civil Engineering (with the first being in sociology). The deal with these basic math and science classes are not as much as to have a "foundation" for upper division courses(it's still critical to know how to apply the basics), but mainly to weed people out of the major. You don't see people dropping out of an engineering degree with just one course left: people change majors 80% the time in the freshmen year. I saw this on the web as a joke but there is some truth to it:

    Engineering school dropout path:
    Aerospace ->Mechanical (Electrical/Computer Science in between all of them)->Civil ->Business/Economics->Social Sciences

    In the 1st semester of your freshmen year, if you couldn't do Calc 1, this pretty much already put you out of sciences unless you wanted to try again (lim GPA->0 = Business Major). After you finish Calc 3, Chemistry, and "Calculus-based" Physics(Mechanics), if you're still going for aero/mechanical, thermodynamics is supposedly the next weeder. For the pre-med path, Organic Chemistry is supposedly the biggest weeder in that sequence.

    As for which classes were difficult for me depended a lot on many factors:
    1)How hard the teacher graded (very important): I went from a "public ivy" to community college to cal state . The community college was the hardest in my opinion(I only passed half my courses there) and the cal state was the easiest(this is where I finished up all the weeders with A's or B's). On top of using ratemyprofessors, use myedu which is a gpa compilation of all grading. It is shown on this website that the cal state only gave Ds or Fs to 10% of students in physics but at my community college the instructor stated that 2/3 of the class dropped every semester for the past 20 years.
    2) Support Network: my parents are both Civil Engineers, so while they couldn't help me with calculus, they did know a good amount of off subjects. Some concepts are never explicitly stated by teachers and books. The best example I can think of is a block down the incline where they give the weight of the block and you're supposed to break it into components. In between the 2nd and 3rd time I took physics, my parents told me to always use the weight as your hypotenuse. No book or teacher ever told me this and it confused the shit out of me for the longest time.
    3) Where it stands on this list.

    <a class="postlink" href="http://www.ncsu.edu/chass/philo/GRE%20Scores%20by%20Intended%20Graduate%20Major.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.ncsu.edu/chass/philo/GRE%20S ... 0Major.htm</a>

    I think I'm pretty average in that whatever everyone else finds difficult, I find difficult too. Off the top of my head 3 dreaded subjects are Calculus, music, foreign language.
     
  20. toddamus

    toddamus
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    396
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    5,312
    Location:
    Somewhere west of New York
    Growing up I always sucked at math. My twin brother would be in the advanced math class and I would be in the normal/almost remedial one. Through grade school and high school it never changed. Then in college I got an Economics degree. What changed? Nothing, I just worked my ass off at it and became good enough.

    As for what I excel at? I would say psychology, it's always come easy to me, but then again it comes easy to everyone.