April 25, 2014

Something I gathered after 2 years of undergraduate studies [rant]

I realised that lectures are not my thing. I find it several times more effective to study a well-written set of lecture notes than attend countless hours of dry and dull lectures. I finally understand why some people don't bother going to lectures yet still manage to do well in exams.

Of course, the best option is to read the lecture notes before going for lectures, but that isn't an option for many modules. It's easier to study lecture notes because one can do it at their own pace. In lectures, you might not fully fathom a small but crucial part in the first 10 minutes and have to spend the next 50 minutes listening to incomprehensible jibber-jabber, or eventually, giving up and whipping out your phone.

I've tried concentrating in lectures, but sometimes it really doesn't work, which led me to come to the conclusion that lectures aren't the optimal way for ME to study. (note the emphasis on ME)

Why not read text books? Because no one really teaches based off a text book. What am I suppose to do when you decide to alter the notations and terminology and have materials taken from different sections of a chapter without specifying which parts are examinable? Before you get into how undergraduate learning is about exploring and studying more in depth, let me stop you there and tell you that it is not the case for the course that I'm doing. I wouldn't mind spending several hours on a topic if it meant that I had to refer to different sources and really create a personal relationship with it, but truth is, I have 10 modules from 4 separate academic departments, each with approximately 20 sections to cover, so there's no way I'm doing that. I can't be arsed. Nor is it necessary.

Now it irks me that some lecturers are hell-bent on sticking to their principles of not giving out lecture notes and expecting students to fully comprehend what they teach during lectures, offering no other options to study, making this wonderful fa├žade of the ultimate study experience a really rigid and dull one. (Okay, I might be a little excessive here ... but hey, no one important is reading this right?). Other lecturers give notes so simplified, that it makes no sense.

Why can't they have recorded lectures? Why?! Then again I'm not too fond of that idea, since it means I'll have to listen to more than the minimum requirement of their voices. I might just go insane.

Best option would be to just GIVE ME A GOOD SET OF NOTES DAMMIT. Props to lecturers who do. I feel like I've wasted my time going for so many lecturers and learning nothing.

Disclaimer: This is just an off-the-top-of-my-head rant. Hope I don't come off as being immature and ungrateful. Even if I really am. Meh.

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