How do you deal with not that related courses?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by alphacat, Nov 21, 2009.

  1. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
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    Even in the third year, there are some courses that you really feel that they have nothing to do with what you want to deal with as engineers.
    In my case, these are electro-optic and math oriented courses (such as random signals, and these communication courses).
    I'm really more into physics and hardware and I find it really hard concentrating on these courses.​

    I'm really frustrated since I think that in the last 2 years of your title, you deserve to choose your own topics after being fed with so many maths during the first two years. ​

    How do you cope with courses that you feel will contribute you nothing in the future?​
     
  2. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    If you know the future, why even bother going to school?

    John
     
  3. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
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    I cant predict the future but for example, i know that currently i dont want to deal with electro-optics in the future, which is therefore why electro-optics is not one of the specialties which i needed to choose for the last 2 years.

    Learning something with no passion wont make me a professional in this, and i'm sure that if one day i'm to work in this field, i'll be able to study it by myself.
    Thats what the degree is all about, isnt it?
    Self studying.
     
  4. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    I was only being slightly sarcastic about predicting the future.

    I spent a lot of time in university settings between high school and starting my career work. I cannot think of a single course I had that did not in some way help me. That includes courses in history, writing, Greek and Roman word derivations, economics, literature, etc. I worked as a scientist in an academic setting, but those liberal arts/distribution credits still helped. The only regret I have is that I did not make time to take some of the courses I didn't think I needed at the time, like differential equations, but sorely regretted that decision later.

    You can't enjoy every course. Sometimes it is the subject matter; more often it seems to be the professor, at least in my experience. You don't need passion to complete a course. You do need discipline.

    John
     
  5. Papabravo

    Expert

    Feb 24, 2006
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    If you don't love learning for its own sake it is hard to understand why you are wasting the school's time as well as your own. Without the love of learning for it's own sake it is hard to imagine that you will be successfule at anything.
     
  6. KL7AJ

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 4, 2008
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    I didn't deal with them very well. :) I was always an electronics nerd, and I didn't give a rat's patoot about social studies of any sort.

    However, looking back from the vantage of grizzled sagacity, I might have benefitted from a few of the "softer" courses.

    Fortunately, I was also very good at English, which has actually been very useful, since a good part of my career is technical writing.

    If you haven't seen it, you really need to see The Dead Poet's Society. I think Professor Keating expresses beautifully the relationship between science and the humanities.

    From a more practical standpoint....tolerate the "basketweaving" classes as best you can for a couple of years, if for no other reason than to keep your grade point average up..

    This too shall pass!

    Eric
     
  7. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
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    I must admit that my passion for learning for its own sake has decreased over the years.
    That is mostly expressed in these courses i find irrelevant to me, but I love studying pure electronics/physics courses such as analog&digital circutis, courses that deal with semiconductors, etc.

    Assuming that most of the student reach the third year tired and not that driven when it comes to courses they find boring, I'd like to see how they deal with them?
    Do they make effort to really understand whats going on in there?
     
  8. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
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    I took metal working on top of all the other stuff, and do not regret learning to run a lathe, mill, and weld at all.

    The same goes for about everything else I've learned. In the course of a life, you will find that you WILL run into an electro-optical problem sooner or later in a real job. Projects are hardly ever specialized into only electronics. Even the artsy packaging is sometimes handed to engineers (those products are easy to spot :D).

    See also what PapaBravo and KL7AJ wrote, they state it much more succinctly than I am able to.
     
  9. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    More along with what thatoneguy said, disciplines change. Who could have guessed stereos and other high end consumer electronics would use fiber optics to carry signals instead of wires 20 years ago? Technology can take some unexpected turns, so a loose background in a wide selection can be very beneficial, even though you can't see it today.
     
  10. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    I can see the future there will no space for anything,who can predict when
    the population will double again.Some where in the news 37 people were
    living in the same 3 bed room house. While some one
    worked another were sleeping in that space,
    the person that objected was the bad guy.Twenty years ago Hong kong was renting
    bunk space,since it became china (that was before China came out of the closet
    with all its might) stuff was funneled thru Hong kong when lables said made in Hong
    kong. Years ago they said the U.S.A. would be the condo of the world(coming true).
    Then you have all the space junk,have you ever seen the antarctica land fill.
    They have bull doziers like all land fills. Engineers will be needed to build them ,
    underground like Dubieu out in the water. The water will have to be recyled,
    another job for engineers.About taking classes,there will be super engineers
    that will have to have all the answers and work with new materials and robotic
    staff.Science may have genenetic engineers to make people smaller to use less
    resources. Fat free milk is a start food will be packaged different,your food may
    be piped in like a utility. Your gas will be use for fuel. You can't imagine a world
    without shelter,some that don't kids would settle for a nerd earth,every one being
    the same.That is now possible,look at promlems sameness would eliminate height,
    weight,genter,race. So we get back to society,every person or nerd can't do the
    same thing,so we are back to 13th century when liberal arts were discovered,the
    same until today.So the wise men have won out so far,why destory them in the
    name of change.Go to school,have desendents and cycle for man kind, we can have
    survival for good.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2009
  11. Nanophotonics

    Active Member

    Apr 2, 2009
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    I like to have a broad knowledge and cover as much as I can and avoid being a narrow specialist.

    From my experience, at the university, you don't really get to choose only those you want to do. The programme structure will always contain some stuff you probably don't like, or didn't expect it to be like that, this happens very often indeed. However, for my final year, rather than choosing what I wanted to do, I finally ended up choosing professors instead. I remember I really enjoyed doing maths, I chose signal processing but it turned out that the professor wasn't really good at explaining. I never hated the subject but I disliked the lectures (was daydreaming :D) and had to learn it all by myself.
     
  12. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    Professors gone wild maybe that world wide I don't the difference in the systems.
    For real which country has the best education system.Do students come to the U.S.A.
    for freedom of speech and get away from there parents strict upbringing government
    policy that inerferes with lifestyles they enjoy.I hope you get the point.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  13. Nanophotonics

    Active Member

    Apr 2, 2009
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    I have to admit that I always wonder how it would have been to study in the USA. I always think that students are given more opportunities overthere. I also think that some universities are overrated. You could easily see that it's very much a business nowdays, especially for overseas students. I value student satisfaction. Nevertheless, I cannot say for sure which country has the best education system. Lifestyle plays an important role as you said. We continuously try to improve. I remain skeptic.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  14. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    Grad students are allowed to run the classrooms,take the labs
    the students can get together and use there knowledge to get
    own grades and complete projects without profeessors. You need
    professors for final grade.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2009
  15. Nanophotonics

    Active Member

    Apr 2, 2009
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    I think only PhD students are given this opportunity in the UK. Undergrads have many restrictions.
     
  16. hgmjr

    Moderator

    Jan 28, 2005
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    There is always the possibility that once you graduate you will get out into the real world and find that the knowledge you imagined would be useless turns out to be the one that catapults you ahead of your fellow graduates competing for the finite job opportunities.

    hgmjr
     
  17. beenthere

    Retired Moderator

    Apr 20, 2004
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    Any courses in the humanities will give you better insights into your dealings with others, or else vastly improve your communications with them. Any science courses help to make the world a more interesting place to live in. Math courses help with logical thinking and problem solving.

    From a personal perspective, nothing is more interesting than a history course.
     
  18. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    I guess I have Imagined students jetting around the world,sorry to hear that some students are restricted for what ever reason. Is it the economy or other things that keep you home. No exchanges.
     
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