Woah. I Understand Now

Those of you who have been following my blog know that I posted something called “The End Is Nigh,” in which I disparaged those who felt overwhelmed by school. Oh how the turntables… All it took was a good dose of too many credit hours.

I was doing a healthy 15 credit hours last semester; this semester it’s up to 19. That isn’t to say I’m not enjoying it. I’m not, but that’s not why. It has more to do with the classes themselves.

Computer science is, at the moment, manageable. I’ve got plenty of experience with programming (especially this week’s latest concepts, polymorphism and inheritance), but that doesn’t mean that the homework problems aren’t substantial. I also know that many of my peers want and need plenty of help, but I’m not really in a position to help them. Academic integrity rules at UNL seem to work differently for computer science than for other sciences. (You can probably chalk this up to my lack of intimate understanding of the issues that the administrators have to deal with. I’m not familiar with all their nuances.)

Economics, while still much more difficult for me, is fine. I’m currently taking macro and micro economics, each generally a three credit hour class, in one four credit hour class. That’s not the best move in my opinion: there’s very little in economics that we can just “skim over,” but I’m still learning a lot and the information has a good deal of depth for an introductory course.

And then there’s accounting. Accounting is fine. Everything is fine.

While the building is not literally on fire, it might as well be. Once again, two three-credit-hour courses crammed into four credit hours. In this case, it’s worse than economics though, mostly due to the textbook.

I’m not saying the textbook’s bad.
I’m not saying it’s not well-written.
I’m not saying it doesn’t have good information.
It’s just impenetrable.

And that’s worse than any of the others above. If the textbook was easy and lacking information, the homework would still reflect that. If the textbook wasn’t well-written, I could just “translate” each of the sentences and then read it.

But it’s an MBA textbook. This is meant to be a reference for people that have been taking business classes for at least four years (in almost all cases if you count high school). This is for people that already have undergraduate degrees.

This and economics are the first business classes I’ve ever taken. When I’m reading this book, I just need to remind myself to come up for air. I’ve been told that I need to learn how to read a book as dense as this. I suppose that’s true. But do I need to learn it this quickly?

Of course, each of the classes I’ve mentioned has assigned some kind of project. Computer science has homework assignments, which, while not insurmountable, are very difficult. Economics has an industry analysis due in parts over the course of the semester. Accounting has a company analysis due tomorrow.

I think the professors coordinate.

And he pointed with his little assegai, the assegai handled with the royal wood, to where the fire glowed reddest—ay, he pointed and laughed. Then, my father, I grew cold indeed—yes, I grew cold who soon should be hot, for I saw the purpose of Chaka. He would put me to the trial by fire. – H. Rider Haggard