First Impressions: Spring 2010

My second day of classes are finished! (I only had one today and a lot less anxiety. Phew.) I think this week is going by slow even though it’s only Tuesday. Is that bad?

Now that I’ve been to all four of my classes, I’m going to tell you my first impressions of each… (I did this last semester and it’s interesting for me to look back on them to see how the classes really turn out.)

General Genetics– It seems like I have a great professor. He’s been teaching there for 21 years and I think he’s almost perfected the way he teaches the class. Grades are not weighted (tests aren’t worth a certain percentage of our grade, etc), instead it’s all by points. He gives us clicker quizzes each class and even if we get an answer wrong, we still get a point. We just have to get half of the total questions right to get all the points. He also gives homework points for problems in the book. Then the rest of the points are tests, in which all the information comes from lectures. He said he wants to make the text book “recommended” instead of required. One test is take-home because it’s the Wednesday after Spring Break! How kind of him! Oh and I think this class will be interesting, I just hope I can grasp all the material.

Environmental Physics– Strange class… it’s for “non-science” majors. Yes, I am a science major and some physics students take it…so really that doesn’t make sense. But psych and business majors take it for a science credit, and secondary education students (like me) take it to fulfill weird DESE requirements. It will involve only a small amount of math and it starts with the basics of physics. After that, we will talk about environmental issues. 13% of our grade is attendance, but we can still miss 5 class sessions without it affecting our grade. We might have quizzes if we make him mad, which he said we won’t. So no tests either? I’m a little confused on that part. We have small homework assignments and a presentation at the end of the semester. He showed us the grades from last semester and all were A’s (besides two B’s I think.) Oh and a lot of class sessions we just watch videos, and then write a report over them.

Psych of the Exceptional Child– This class is required for my education certification, and I think I’ll like it (considering I like psychology and education.) It’s about students who aren’t the “norm”; mostly about topics in special education, but also a little about gifted students. Sometime during the semester we are required to observe in one of those classrooms and then write an observation paper. The professor seems really nice and I’ve heard great things about her. I think you can get a minor in psych and take every class with her. Oh and I bought this text book at the bookstore for cheaper than online! This has happened to me before but I still think it’s strange!

Ecology– I know my professor already because he’s my advisor. He’s really nice and laid back! I found out (or maybe I already knew) that he commutes from St. Louis. Wow; a 1.5 hour drive! It’s hard to tell what the tests will be like… but either way, I know he’s really willing to help us. I think the material of this class will be interesting (or at least some of it, like current events in ecology). We also have a group presentation in this class and then two short writing assignments.

So this is what I’ll be busy with for the next 17 weeks. Woohoo! ;-) Okay, I shouldn’t complain since I still get paid to go… it could be worse! You know, like having to pay for this stress!

Spring Semester 2010

Today marked the beginning of yet another semester.

Can you sense the excitement in my voice writing?

I’m not used to having such a short break, as in 4-5 weeks, in-between semesters. The last time I went straight from Fall to Spring was in 2007-2008. Then I had a break in Summer 2008 (kind of, besides two online classes), took the Fall 2008 semester off, started back in Spring 2009, had Summer 2009 off, went back in Fall 2009, and now… I’m back already and it’s Spring 2010! How it’s already 2010 and how it’s only my fifth semester is beyond me… weird.

Maybe if I didn’t take 12 hours at a time, I could graduate in a timely manner. But who does that?

So again this semester I have just enough hours to be considered full-time. 12 hours, which is quite enough for me. I’m enrolled in four classes: Genetics, Ecology, Environmental Physics, and Psychology of the Exceptional Child (no labs.) The layout of my schedule isn’t bad considering my earliest class is at 11 am, I only have one class on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and I’m finished at 2 pm on Fridays.

Today I was really frustrated because I had anxiety and it made my stomach upset most of the day. I didn’t feel anxious in my head, so I didn’t understand where my body gets these messages. I’m going to try passion flower as a natural remedy for anxiety… I saw it on Dr. Oz and then googled it. I need to do something or I’ll never make it through normal life, like going to the dentist this month (because I’m afraid they’ll threaten to extract my wisdom teeth.)

Anxiety aside, my classes were fine and I didn’t feel as intimidated as I usually do. Maybe I’m catching on to this college thing … or maybe I’m in for a good semester. I really hope both!

Oh, speaking of anxiety– I also had it yesterday. A different kind though, one that doesn’t disturb my stomach. The kind I get when I tried to study for history tests last semester or when I feel over-stimulated. It still sucks though because I can’t concentrate on anything. I think it was partly caused from being glued to my MacBook for entirely too many hours. Oops, I’m really trying to work on that now. I need to find better things to do with my time.

Prayers, hopes, wishes, and dreams for a good semester.