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In our wide world there exists a variety of objects
that generally should not be dropped,
bowling balls, containers of pure sodium,
that kinda thing.
However, by contrast, there are also several things
that should be dropped,
such as fire ants,
in fact that's probably the most important
thing you should drop.
Also, the subject when your uncle Gary
brings up politics at Thanksgiving dinner,
and also, classes.
In last week's video we looked at some research
which showed that academic overload
is the most common cause for long term student
stress and burnout.
And that's why in this one I wanna argue that
it's OK to drop classes when you need to.
Now, many students view dropping a class
as tantamount to actually failing that class flat out.
And I understand their reasoning.
We have ideals that tell us to stick with our commitments,
to follow through.
Those that persevere through adversity
will succeed, while those who don't
are doomed to a life of regret
and a distinctive lack of sports car purchases.
But, let's dispense with the inspiring platitudes here.
Yes, perseverance is a virtue worth cultivating,
and yes, in general you should approach
each of the things you commit to
with the intention of seeing them through.
But there's an element of tactical decision making
to be injected here,
especially with respect to your class schedule.
And the reason for that is that many ambitious students
tend to over commit when they're signing up for classes.
I've been in the same exact position
that you've probably found yourself in.
It's time to sign up for classes,
and you're thinking about the new semester.
And in addition to that, you're thinking about
new semesters in general,
which brings about associations of new beginnings
and full stocks of will power.
As a result, you tend to over commit
when you're signing up.
So, say you've fallen victim to this line of thinking
and now you've realized that the work load
you've signed yourself up for is too much.
What's the solution?
Well, simple, drop a class.
If you're diligent about gauging your classes early on,
it's likely that dropping a class will
have no negative effect on you.
My university, for example,
let people drop unlimited classes with no
marks on their transcripts up to five days
after the semester started.
Even after that, you could drop a limited amount of courses
up to half way through the semester.
Though, if you're gonna do this,
you should probably note the exact limit
that your university has.
I dropped courses several times as a student
for a variety of reasons.
A couple of elective classes I took
ended up having way higher work loads
than I anticipated, so I dropped those.
For another class I eventually realized
I was only part of the program that required it
because I wanted to pad my resume out.
I didn't actually really care about the program,
and it wasn't gonna help me achieve my goals,
so I eventually just dropped the class,
actually dropped out of the program,
and used the time it freed up to do things
that I actually cared about.
There are other valid reasons for dropping classes as well,
such as a professor who's teaching style
just doesn't work for you.
You could mitigate some of these risks
before the semester starts by using things like
Rate My Professors and reading the syllabi
to get a feel for the workload,
but you won't know for sure how a class goes
until you're sitting in it.
So, here is express permission.
Drop classes when you need to.
Find out what your university's drop policy is
and then use it to your advantage
to create a schedule that you control,
rather than one that takes over your life.
This gives you time to fill your schedule
with other useful pursuits like part time jobs,
extracurriculars, events, and much needed relaxation time.
In the case of a bad professor,
it also gives you the chance to look for a different section
of the same class that might have a better professor.
Now, one caveat here though.
When you drop a class, make sure you open your
graduation plan and update the change.
If you don't have a graduation plan
that lays out the courses you plan to take
up until graduation,
I highly recommend creating one.
If you want, you can get a copy of a spreadsheet
that I used for my own graduation plan.
And I've included it as a free download,
along with my free book that you can get by
clicking on the card or the link in the description.
Now, I realize that this might not be a viable strategy
for every single student out there.
Maybe you're in a program or a college
that requires you to take a strict set of classes
every single semester,
and you can't drop any of them.
Or maybe you need to take college
at an accelerated pace in order to be able
to afford it.
Likewise, it's a strategy that might not solve
all of your time management problems,
especially if you're a student who has to spend
a lot of hours at a part time job in addition
to your studies and classes.
Still, it's something that deserves consideration.
And I think the biggest take away here
is that dropping a class should not be seen as a failure.
It should be seen as a tactical decision.
Now, I'm not the only person who'll advocate this strategy.
My friend, Cal Newport, who's a computer science professor
and the author of several books,
included this advice near the start of his book,
"How to Win at College",
which I actually used as a high school student
in preparation for my own college experience.
As he interviewed top students
from all around the country for his book,
he realized that one of the main strategies
they used to stay on top of their classes
was creating a schedule that they felt in control of.
Careful course selection is one of the best tools
for retaining that control.
And dropping classes is a part of that course selection
process that you should be taking advantage of.
(bright techno music)
Hey guys, thanks so much for watching my video
on why you should drop classes.
If you wanna get new videos every single week
on being a more effective student,
you can click that big red subscribe button right there.
You can also get a free copy of my book
on earning better grades by clicking the book's picture.
And that also comes with a copy of my graduation
planning spreadsheet, like I mentioned earlier.
So if you wanna get that, click the picture
and I will send you both.
If you wanna see the companion blog post for this episode,
or read Cal's thoughts on this exact same topic
then you click the orange logo
and head over to my website.
If you missed last week's video,
we talked about how to avoid burnout
as a student, or deal with it if you're already feeling it.
And also, if you'd like to connect with me,
ask questions, or get feedback,
you can follow me on Twitter @TomFrankly,
or leave a comment below.
Thanks for watching.
(bright techno music)


Class Schedule Advice: Dropping a Course - College Info Geek

652 タグ追加 保存
Jammy 2017 年 2 月 23 日 に公開
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