Grad school – first term in review

October 29, 2011• 17 Comments

So my first term of grad school finally ended last week and my goodness it was hectic. It was almost like taking summer or winter classes because of the short duration (8 weeks, including a week for final exams), except you’d only have each class twice a week, which only makes it more hectic :/ I think I spent the weekend after exams just sleeping because that’s how sleep deprived I was -_-

So what is grad school really like? I thought it was going to be easy, because that’s what people told me, and while it’s not impossible, it’s certainly not college anymore:

  • Professors treat you like adults, not babies. Meaning if you mess up, you deal with the consequences, no exception.
  • On the plus side of them treating you like adults, it gives you more leverage in negotiating things such as exam time and due dates.
  • Most classes are seminar style – meaning the professor doesn’t really give lectures. It’s all case discussions.
  • Which means that participation matters. A lot.
  • Hence no skipping classes :/

So what is grad school not like?

While further one’s education is always admirable, I would much rather be paid to do work then pay to do work.

So excuse me as a I continue to spend money on having no life[1. And acquire serious road rage due to my daily commute]. One term down, 3 more to go! :(

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  1. Erica says:

    I've never had formal education after high school so excuse my ignorance when I question this– college teachers don't treat you like adults? That would piss me off in college if I had attended. :P

    1. Jenny says:

      Maybe I should've phrased things better, but I feel like it's not too different from high school. Professor still send multiple reminders of when homework is due and that sorts of stuff, and when you mess up, most aren't not shocked at all and they let you off easy. Not that it's a bad thing, but that's definitely not how the real world works :P

  2. nyuu says:

    I'm starting grad school next year so this post helped me XD I didn't know they'll finally treat us more like an adult! Coolness XD (or not… I can't skip class?!)

    hehe but yea, I don't think I will run into the exact same problem since my grad school is totally online (I prefer on campus, but they only offer online, which is common now for my major T_T;)

    I'm still looking forward to it since I've heard they do treat you differently and that it's quite different from undergrad classes :3

    GOOD LUCK!!!!!! After it is all done…you are FREEE! XD

  3. Bonnie says:

    "So excuse me as a I continue to spend money on having no life" SO TRUE HAHA. Except I'm pretty sure grad school is even more hectic than what I have to go through right now but omg, that line just probably made my day :P

    I might go to taiwan during my trip to hongkong too, not sure what to expect from there though! The most knowledge of it comes from the dramas :P

  4. Bonnie says:

    Oh boo, that was a big fail… I entered one of my old URLs into the website form.

  5. Krystal says:

    University (or what you call Grad school) is a big step from school. In school we had teachers making sure we do our homework, checking up on us etc but at university we only had ourselves. No one checks on us so it's all up to us to study, attend lectures etc.

    The social life is pretty crazy over here in the UK. We can drink from age 18 which means we can go clubbing at university. Bars and clubs take advantage of us and open loads around university areas. They also do student nights weekly (discount drinks) to encourage student to attend. Many people fail because they can't balance work and social life. They can't be independent and take responsibility so end up just partying all day everyday.

    As long as you study hard and balance your work with social then you'll be fine.

    On top of that, we don't have exams till the end of the year, so many people don't study till the week before the exam…a big big mistake. At least you guys have exams so it will help to keep you on top shape for the work part.

    Good luck and have fun at the same time :)

  6. Dipika says:

    I can imagine grad school being hectic…I would definitely be sleep deprived as well >_<. I am glad you were able to catch up on your sleep after exams :)

    Aww…I think it all depends on your career…for me going to grad school seems like a waste because by the time I finish up with my curriculum some new technology is going to be out either ways (I am a software engineer btw). Whereas my sis is a dentist…she likes studying and it makes sense for her to gain more in depth knowledge as a person in the medical field. It is all relative I believe!

    That said, try not to get too much road rage lol. Good luck with the remaining 3 terms!


    Well I did but I had a reference picture so it wasn't all that creative lol…that's how most line-arts are…I wish I was better though :D.

  7. Robin says:

    Having been through the undergraduate and graduate school experience, I concur with this post. [/educated-sounding tone]

    Seriously, the "paying to have no life" thing is exactly right. Most of my classes were at night and once a week, so my years in grad school were really weird–I was home when no one else was, and I was out when all my roomies were home, so my social life was flushed down the toilet.

    The best thing about grad school, for me, was how I could talk knowledgeably to my professors about the subject matter (and how I could conference with them if I needed help). You're right, you do get treated more as an adult…and if you can make every class meeting and stick to your work, you can end up with wonderful professional contacts in your field. :)

  8. Kris says:

    Lol thanks for the insight. All I knew about grad school is from my brother and it's always sounded like hell. So I don't even know what to expect. Everyone told me college is easy and so far it's been hell for me so I don't even know what to expect. I'm expected to go to grad school but I don't think I'd make it at this rate.

    The meme was going around as a chain type thing. =D Lol I love Gee but it's so so so so so annoying! It might make a great ringtone though but hopefully it didn't ring for your boyfriend at an important situation. XD

  9. Liv says:

    Ahh, I didn't know grad school was so short! I had a starter summer class a couple years ago so it wasn't that hectic. 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, 4 weeks.

    I think I'll like and hate grad school then. I hate it when professors go so easy on people for screwing up. Last year I had a professor who just knew what she was doing and you either do it right or wrong. I just wish professors would all be like that. But I'll really hate the participation in grad school because in my opinion people talk too much.

  10. Krystal says:

    Hey girl, I tagged you in the tagging game here

  11. Oridusartic says:

    Aww~ now I'm getting a little scared to enter grad school. Will I be able to do it while working? (+_+)

  12. Stephanie says:

    Bahaha! I love that ecard. I'm surprised people have been under the impression any type of grad school is easy!

    I still haven't decided whether I'm going to grad school or not. I undergraded in psychology, and having to run psychological research was hard enough; can't imagine having to do more. :(

  13. Joyce says:

    Grad school seems scary even though I know it's also something I want to accomplish down the line after my undergrad education. We had a class for one session in my management class where the class was a mix of undergrad and grad students. We watched the grad students give a "stimulated board meeting"… everyone up there (about 6 grad students) definitely had to participate. I guess the expectation is there that everyone is an adult and must do their part in being active in the class (like you said). Good luck with the rest of grad school!! In mandarin: Jia yo!!! :)

  14. Cat says:

    I was wondering what grad school classes were like. I was considering going back at one point. That's interesting that it's more seminar style. And 8 weeks does sound really short and hectic! Good luck with the rest of your terms!

  15. DaRon says:

    I honestly can't wait for Grad school. Luckily for me being a Social Work major if you maintain a B+ or higher in all of my undergrad (social work) courses it qualifies you for an advanced standing program which means only one year of Grad school!

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