August 1, 2005 by Allen George
I’m slowly counting down the days till my last exam. After the hectic, project-heavy months I’ve been through, the past two (three?) days have been buolic. That’s a mixed blessing however. I’ve been so acclimatized to a succession of due-dates, of coming home to a wall of sticky-notes proclaiming “FYDP: June xx, STV: July xx, ECE 454: June xx” that my first day of ‘study time’ was an unmitigated disaster. Compared to projects where progress – no matter how small – is discernable, studying feels painfully slow. You read. Try a few problems. Fail. Read again. At the end of the day you ask yourself “What the hell happened? Did I actually get anything done?”
I can’t afford another disaster of a day. Come on, I actually have to get the material here…
The disadvantage of having such a project-heavy term is that you have little time to learn the material. You hear the professor in class, try and retain the little material you did understand and then return to work on a project that doesn’t immediately apply the concepts you’re ‘learning’ at school. Talk about a disconnect. Then it’s exam time. What do you do?! Simple. Use what little time you have to cram everything possible into your head, ready to core dump all over the final. Repeat for each subject. So much for “learning”.
I’ve been at Waterloo for four years now and I know this
Well – maybe it works for some (many?) people – but it doesn’t work for me. Cramming’s short term and I’ve soon lost most of what I learned over those few days. What a farce…