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Engineering is too hard!

A photo of obesechicken13 obesechicken13
Hi guys, loving the new look.

[whine]
I'm a second year electrical and computer engineer. I study at the University of Toronto and am awaiting my course marks for the first semester. Next semester is supposed to be the hardest of my life.

Ok so I don't know what else I could be doing better... I go to my classes, the useful ones, and I study with a group. Just about everyone in the group did better than me on the midterms because before the midterms I was studying alone. After that I started studying with my group, so my marks rose.

You look hungry would you like some bread with my whine?

Ok so last year I had a 60 average... Boo! bad! and I had to retake a course.. this year my average before the finals was a 65. One course had a mark in the 50s, just above 50 in fact... some events led up to this... I studied two days myself for the midterm and did not recognize the integration by parts question and did not even get to Jacobeans. I went to my friend's birthday the night before one quiz, and was forced to take a quiz during a different tutorial section when I didn't want to for another. I don't want to fail Calc 3 just after retaking Calc 2 :(

Now I study just about every day.... I spend about 10 hours a day on school, both in class and doing problem sets and the like. I don't play video games anymore, I don't watch any TV series... haven't even been able to keep up with the simpsons.

I'm not an idiot, I had a cumulative SAT of 2280, And subject test scores of 770, 790, 800 on bio chem and math2 and my high school GPA was a 93 with 6 APs.

Now what more can I do to make sure that I pass all of my courses? As far as I know almost all of my friends spend all day of every day studying. Should I switch to Uberman sleep cycles?

I don't want to hire a tutor $40+/hr, the tutor that the school provides can't remember anything from back when he was a student.
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17 replies
 
A photo of mynameismattgotmlgo mynameismattgotmlgo
Are your classes curved?
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A photo of Shanta Shanta
Are you positive electrical and computer engineering is the career for you?

If you haven't already, take one of those Myers-Briggs Type Indicator free online tests.

I believe someone with an INTJ type personality would really enjoy your current program, however I'm sure there are other personality types that would be suitable just the same.

Best wishes.

Peace.

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A photo of Zion Zion
Definitely why I'm not going to U of T. :bball:
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A photo of Zion Zion
Also, I wouldn't let a stupid personality test determine my future.
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A photo of littleroom littleroom
Are you sure your studying habits are doing you any good? I'm in my first year at UofT as well (although in Life Science, not Engineering). I realized that constantly studying isn't actually the best strategy. I'll give you an example. My first two chemistry term tests, I went to all the lectures, read all the textbook chapters (twice for the second term test), and did all the practice problems they assigned (they assigned A LOT of questions). But I still came out of those two tests with awful marks. So, I stopped really listening in lecture (although this may not be good advice for most courses, for CHM139 this year the lectures were pointless), didn't do any practice problems, but just read the textbook slowly and made sure I understood everything. While studying for the chemistry exam, I would, every two hours or so, take a thirty minute break just to get my mind off things. When it came time to write the exam, I wrote it easily because I knew all the concepts.

Another important thing is stress. Before writing the first term test for chemistry, I had heard many horror stories about it and I walked in telling myself I should expect no more than a 60. I stressed out a lot during the test and mucked up some of the easiest questions. So if you're stressed out about your future and current marks, don't be, because it'll only make it worse.

Finally, don't let these marks make you feel stupid. You just need to adjust.

I hope it turns out better for you.
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A photo of obesechicken13 obesechicken13

@littleroom wrote
Are you sure your studying habits are doing you any good? I'm in my first year at UofT as well (although in Life Science, not Engineering). I realized that constantly studying isn't actually the best strategy. I'll give you an example. My first two chemistry term tests, I went to all the lectures, read all the textbook chapters (twice for the second term test), and did all the practice problems they assigned (they assigned A LOT of questions). But I still came out of those two tests with awful marks. So, I stopped really listening in lecture (although this may not be good advice for most courses, for CHM139 this year the lectures were pointless), didn't do any practice problems, but just read the textbook slowly and made sure I understood everything. While studying for the chemistry exam, I would, every two hours or so, take a thirty minute break just to get my mind off things. When it came time to write the exam, I wrote it easily because I knew all the concepts.

Another important thing is stress. Before writing the first term test for chemistry, I had heard many horror stories about it and I walked in telling myself I should expect no more than a 60. I stressed out a lot during the test and mucked up some of the easiest questions. So if you're stressed out about your future and current marks, don't be, because it'll only make it worse.

Finally, don't let these marks make you feel stupid. You just need to adjust.

I hope it turns out better for you.



I hope so too, I may update (don't quote me on it) once my winter marks come out.

I don't stress before my exams, I've learned some good test taking strategies like taking a 30 minute breather right before exams. That was some good advice though, I screwed up a 1hr Programming midterm this term because I was on half a can of energy drink. Not a good idea.

Concepts may be a good idea, but the textbooks are a bit too dense for me to understand. I wish I could read and understand them like you do. I guess I'll have to settle for asking friends about concepts.

Edit: oh and guys, I only know that ECE is hard, and I hear that Engsci is harder, I don't know anything about the other majors... but I assume that engineering is still harder here than at another school that subscribes to grade inflation.
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A photo of Anonymous Anonymous
Isn't it obvious that the OP is trolling?
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A photo of leviaidan leviaidan
Xiaohaha is a troll.
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A photo of Zion Zion
I just realized he forgot to close whine.

Also, he said he likes the new forum. Troll indeed.
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A photo of Anonymous Anonymous

@leviaidan wrote
Xiaohaha is a troll.



Such egregious accusations. Do you have any proof?
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A photo of BrackenClelk BrackenClelk
Er... I don't see how you can do problem sets for 10 hours a day and still not do well... There's only so many ways to ask a question, and you definitely shouldn't be blindsided by anything.

I think the issue is that you're too breezy towards your studying. Quantity is not quality. Judging by what you typed: "I go to my classes, the useful ones", "I started studying with my group, so my marks rose", and "the textbooks are too dense for me to understand", it doesn't seem like you have the right attitude. Why do you deem some classes useless? Why did your marks improve when studying in a group? Why did you not re-read the textbook (or ask for help) until all concepts are cleared?
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A photo of VegaKrazmych VegaKrazmych
Concepts are everything! Don't try to study by going through individual problems or sets. If you do, then when things are shuffled up a bit, you'll flounder.
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A photo of BLauren BLauren
Hi Charlie
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A photo of obesechicken13 obesechicken13
Hi B

This is awkward...I didn't expect to see someone from real life on here.
I don't think I'll say my grades anymore...

It's late, I know. Took a nap today and not tired.
I don't see how everyone can just throw around the term troll. You should realize that it's rather hurtful when someone isn't a troll.

Anyways, I guess I'll try to make my study habits better. I make a lot of mistakes and the UoT is doable. I don't mean to scare anyone (too much). And B here knows that I like to vent my frustrations a lot. Sorry you had to be caught in the middle of my venting. I'm often just overworked, overwhelmed, tired, and feel underappreciated.. and I have to let out my frustrations. I either do it by being angry at myself, at others, or harmlessly by venting at my institution.

Passing Calc 3 though :D did way better than I expected
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A photo of Love2travel Love2travel
First of all, are you sure that you are working toward the right career? If this career is the perfect fit for your goals, then you're on the right track..I've heard that engineering is extremely hard and demanding. For a good profession, I guess you just have to suffer through the pain. It's great that you're working so hard to improve your study habits. This was just your first semester- I'm pretty sure most students struggle with the studying/marking scheme of things in their first year. I know I went through a bit of that last semester, and will in the upcoming one. I've realized it's a year to just work on your skills and see what routines work best for you. If you are finding that studying 10 hours a day doesnt really improve your grades, maybe you need to find some other techniques. You said that studying with a group helps. Maybe you can start a group for every class! As for sleep, I think if you want to do well in university, sleep is just something you have to sacrifice. It's a part of life. Last semester I actually found that going to bed early and waking up super early to study helped me do better- I absorbed info better in the morning, when my mind was fresh. Don't stress too much right now..you're on the right track so far if you're thinking about your study techniques and where you can improve. Best of luck! :)
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