Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Worst College Classes

I graduated from college one year ago. This last year has been the longest break from homework in my life, and yet I seem to have written so much more here than on any papers for class. Not every class I took in college was useful. Some classes bored me to no end. A few, though, lit fires in my soul and taught lessons I won't soon forget.

The Worst of the Worst:

English 106: Introduction to Poetry. I won't name the professor, but he was absolutely terrible. Poetry, to me, is about personal interpretation, not simply believing what the professor wants me to believe. Also, it should not take six weeks to cover what 'iambic pentameter' is, sheesh!

Physics 332: Light, Vision, and Color. I keep forgetting that I did take a physics class along with all the biology and chemistry. I looked forward to PH332 for two years, and I actually grasped most of the concepts in the class. The lab portion rocked! But when the professor took five points off my final essay for my using a proper noun in place of a pronoun, oh I lost it. And when I went to speak with him about the missing points and called him "Doctor ____" instead of using his first name, he took five more points off. After the dust settled, I walked away from the class thankful that it wasn't required for graduation.

Art 101: Introduction to Art. Sounds pretty easy right, Art 101? I took seven art classes in high school, and I have a healthy appreciation for many artists. I know the Elements and Principles of Design. Emily and I took this class together, and we both struggled in it. I can memorize anything, and she studied her butt off... we both took a hit in this class, and I can't remember any of it now. Useless, difficult class.

Z345: Introduction to Evolution. Emily and I took this class together too, and we refer to it as the "robust" class. Every day, Emily would tally across the top of her notes how many times the professor said, "um," "okay," "yeah," "robust," and a few other funny sayings. If the lecture was condensed without all the filler words, it'd take about ten minutes to say. I finally stopped going because I got bored and wasn't learning anything new.

ED219: Multicultural Issues in Education. This class was awful! The whole term, the teacher made a point of telling us that, simply because most of us are Caucasian, we were automatically racist. No matter what we said, he kept calling us racist. Hey, I've got an idea: instead of telling us that you know what we are, how about allowing us to discover our own biases and grow from them? Talk about an idiot. I think I'm more biased now than I was before the class.

The math department and I shared words more than once about MTH251 professors. I took MTH251: Differential Calculus twice, and I did understand the material the second time around. My problem wasn't as much with the coursework and subject as with the professors. The first guy was so bad that 80% of the class left by the end of the term. He'd put a problem on the board, scribble some incoherent smudge, and explain it, "so after you do all the algebra, it looks like the answer is... three." He never explained the algebra, didn't bother telling us his reasoning. The second term, I had a female professor. She was nice enough, and her lectures were good. My problem was with her grading. She didn't care about homework: the term's grades were based on your lowest test score. If you got A's on everything else but a C on the midterm, your grade wouldn't be higher than a C. I know that I test poorly. Yes, the math department and I shared words...

But not all was lost for me in the math department. I finished with MTH390, upper division no less. And I still love math. Wish I could say the same for stupid poetry professors or "robust" evolution professors.

What were the good classes? Tune in tomorrow...

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