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How long is a course unit?

jnnypeajnnypea Posts: 62Registered User Junior Member
I saw on the EE course catalog that for the "Units" description of
courses, it lists a couple of numbers connected by dashes( for exaple,
Units: 4-2-9). What does this mean, and do you know how long/how many
terms a unit is? How does this translate into time needed to complete a course?
Post edited by jnnypea on
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Replies to: How long is a course unit?

  • molliebatmitmolliebatmit Posts: 12,290Super Moderator Senior Member
    All of the courses in the course catalogue are one term long. (A sequence of courses, not one course, would cover an entire year.)

    The units are translated like this: the first number represents the number of hours to be spent in class per week (the 4 in your example), the second number represents the number of hours to be spent in lab per week (the 2 in your example), and the last number represents the number of hours to be spent on outside work per week (the 9 in your example).

    Most classes at MIT are 12 units (5-0-7 and 4-0-8 are common distributions), which theoretically means you're supposed to spend 12 hours per week on a typical class. This isn't always the case -- some courses are more work-intensive than their units suggest, and some are less.
  • MIT2010MIT2010 Posts: 251Registered User Junior Member
    would you please post the link to these numbers? I want to major in neuroscience or brain/cognitive science, what are the links (that will give you the units like 5-0-7) to my majors?

    what are some links to required coures (chem, bio, physics, etc)?
  • molliebatmitmolliebatmit Posts: 12,290Super Moderator Senior Member
    The degree requirements for course 9 are listed here; all the course 9 courses offered can either be found linked from that page or here. Most upper-division course 9 classes are 3-0-9; they meet twice a week for an hour and a half each time.

    As for class sites, biology is here, chemistry (the "engineering" version) is here (the "science" versions are on Stellar and can't be accessed by the public), physics is here. All of these classes are 5-0-7 except physics, which is 3-2-7.
  • MIT2010MIT2010 Posts: 251Registered User Junior Member
    thanks so much!
  • jnnypeajnnypea Posts: 62Registered User Junior Member
    oh cool, thanks Mollie!
  • jnnypeajnnypea Posts: 62Registered User Junior Member
    is the last number(outside work) supposed to be like the expected homework/pset time?
  • molliebatmitmolliebatmit Posts: 12,290Super Moderator Senior Member
    Yup, it's supposed to be the average week in terms of psets, reading, or writing -- whatever the homework for the particular course is.
  • jnnypeajnnypea Posts: 62Registered User Junior Member
    oo okey dokey, thanks again!
  • jnnypeajnnypea Posts: 62Registered User Junior Member
    o and so like, the whole 4-2-9, 15 units count towards any given unit requirement, including expected homework time?
  • molliebatmitmolliebatmit Posts: 12,290Super Moderator Senior Member
    If the course is 4-2-9, you would get 15 units of credit when you complete it.

    I think at other schools they do units by some other method -- like maybe just hours in class per week or something. We just happen to do it this way.
  • tropicalislandtropicalisland Posts: 456Registered User Member
    wow. 12-15 hours per week in a course is quite a lot considering that most students would have four-six other classes. How much time does a student work a day usually? Is it hard to manage time at MIT?
  • pebblespebbles Posts: 2,617Registered User Senior Member
    most mit students would have 3-3 other classes. the vast majority of the student body never take more than 4 classes a term.
  • tropicalislandtropicalisland Posts: 456Registered User Member
    lol ok that's a relief. During CPW, I met this crazy guy who is double-majoring and double-minoring and doing 15 hrs of UROP a week.
  • vampirovampiro Posts: 1,753Registered User Senior Member
    who the hell would take more than 4 classes a week....that would be crazy considering the hours mentioned....
    but of course i'd like to tell you that at Indian Institutes of technology kids study for straight 8 hrs a day in classes and Homeworks and projects are extra..:)....not that i like that...but just thought should mention that there is no dearth of crazy schools in the world...

    As for you tropicalisland: I know people from MIT who wake for straight 48 hrs working on projects and finishing stuff during tense times..so its one hell of a ride there...
  • pebblespebbles Posts: 2,617Registered User Senior Member
    I was in class for 5 hours today and have been doing homework for the past 12 or so. That's what happens when you start 8.022 at the last minute.
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