Sep 122011
Authors: Emily Kribs and Libby Williams

Emily Kribs, freshman

It’s expected that college-level classes differ from those taken in high school.  After four weeks of classes, I think it’s safe to pass a cursory assessment on them and say that this is absolutely true.

First of all, the classes are shorter. I remember looking at my fully assembled schedule and thinking, “Can you even accomplish anything in fifty minutes?”  Imagine my astonishment when I realized this was not only possible, but also sometimes excessive.

Shorter classes mean less busywork, which was the bane of my high school experience. Trust me, I don’t learn a damn thing from doing a crossword puzzle that isn’t even going to be checked for completion. (The same goes for playing Scrabble in French on my phone.  I am now sure that “wu” is not a word.)

Ditching the block schedule is a huge plus as well: if everything’s been covered for the day, we’re not expected to stick around until the bell.  We can take off and dedicate that time to something more productive, like beating the lines for lunch.

It’s nice being able to look up your professors’ ratings online, too.  It certainly saves one the effort of showing up to class to have the teacher himself tell you he doesn’t get very good evaluations on said sites.

Call me a dork, but it’s nice to be held accountable.  It tends to reduce the number of kids showing up to class who don’t care about what they’re doing.  Then there’s the whole not-babying-you thing that high school teachers always claim they subscribe to but never actually do, which also seems like a leading cause in the Anti-Useless-Busywork League.

There are some detriments to college’s fluidity as well.  I’m positive I never missed a class in high school because the teacher was locked out, or because we were sent to the wrong computer lab.

There are still some similarities to high school — its still school, after all. You’ve got your classes and your teachers and your homework and your tests.  Overall, however, college is by far preferable in terms of format.

I’ll admit though, I don’t look forward to being able to look back on this column and laugh once exams roll around.

Libby Williams, senior

I remember the novelty of college classes. Fifty minutes, no in-class activities, no bells ringing every hour… it was amazing.

But once you have taken 161 credits at the college level, class format doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are supposed to go to class. And you really don’t want to.

It’s senioritis. And it has progressively worsened each of my three senior years. You can imagine how bad it is now.

Only a week in, and I was already skipping to babysit the cable guy. I didn’t go to class yesterday, well, because I didn’t want to.

The longer you are in school, the more you seem to find things that may (or may not) be more important than sitting through a freshman-level lecture led by a neurotic professor who speaks so fast that they find themselves out of breath.

Somehow (maybe due to silly journalism requirements) as a “super-duper” senior, I keep finding myself in freshman-level classes. When I registered for them, I thought they would be easy. It turns out they aren’t. They’re probably the worst.

One hundred level lecturers are the ones that try to scare students into doing class work. They always guilt trip me into purchasing the $200 book that I only crack during the first week. They are the ones who say, “I’ll know who you are,” if you intend on skipping class. They are the intimidators who only have intimidation as leverage to get students to attend their class, because lecture notes are posted online and the basic principles are right there in that $200 book.

So clearly, the freshman-level classes are one reason I skip. But another (maybe more prominent) reason is, well, going to class just plain sucks. I mean, I’ve learned how to study. I can figure out by looking at the syllabus what days I REALLY need to attend class and take notes. I am a pretty good judge of how this college thing works. And if I end up with a “C,” I’m the only person to blame.

To be honest, I didn’t start habitually skipping until my first senior year. And still, I only skip the classes that aren’t directly linked to my career goals. It’s my strategy.

Just know that if you skip classes, which isn’t smart for those of you novice university attendees, that what you miss is all on your shoulders. Don’t expect the teachers (especially those 100-level professors) to help you out. Maybe if you have a legitimate excuse they might, but don’t count on it.

Even if college classes may be a change from high school, it is still expected that you attend. It seems more relaxed, and I’ve definitely gotten away with skipping, but if you want to get what you are paying for here at CSU, going to class makes sense.

So when you feel like you don’t want to go to class, Emily, maybe take the day off. But know that it only gets worse when senior year rolls around.

 Posted by at 4:49 pm

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