New UC Transfer from CC - failing and need help

<p>Hey guys, first time poster. long time lurker.. but I really need some advice that I cant seem to get anywhere else.</p>

<p>I am a new transfer student at UD Davis. I came from out of state (washington) from a smaller community college by Spokane. I completed their "Transfer degree" program that essentially gets all the GEs out of the way so you can start as a junior. </p>

<p>I was an awesome student. I have (had) a 4.0 GPA , I tutored for math and science, I TAd for some classes, I was student body.. Nothing could touch me. </p>

<p>I am (thought i was) gifted and math and science. Ever since high school It just came naturally to me. I did math for fun. my CC didnt have much in the way of math, though I was able to complete up to Calc III but that was it. I never took physics (it wasnt offered) but I managed to self study and discuss concepts with my math professor.</p>

<p>The entire campus was rooting for me to get into a good school. I apped at Berkely, University of WA, Gonzaga, UD Davis and Stanford. I was accepted to all, except Berkeley. I decided to UC Davis becuase my fam lives in sacramento and it was a free place to stay. My tuition is fully paid by scholarships and grants at Davis, but at stanford and gonzaga (pricate schools) the money was just short of tuition, where at Davis it was enough for tuition and cost of living. So davis made sense, and its an awesome school.</p>

<p>I was so incredibly excited. I am an physics major, and plan to do a Masters in Physics and a BA in EE or CS. That is until I started.</p>

<p>my first set of classes was Differential equations, Phsyics 9A, ECS 30, and AStro 10. I was all prepared to be a bad ass student here like i was at my CC.. </p>

<p>I dont know what it is.. but I cant seem to keep up here. I failed my Diffy Q midterm and fortunately was within the 20 day drop so i dropped it. Math was my strong suit but i just couldnt keep up with the material. It was all so foreign to me. It was like I was missing an entire year of something. </p>

<p>In physics, I have failed every single quiz, and I just got a D- on my midterm... ***? </p>

<p>in ECS 30, I have failed every lab quiz except 2 (out of 6) and get about 70% on the homeworks. </p>

<p>in Astro im doing okay.. but its an 10 level class.. freshmen. </p>

<p>My question to you guys is, what am i doing wrong? I study every day, but it seems like no matter how hard I study, I just dont understand the concepts. I never had this problem before now and I really have no idea how to proceed. </p>

<p>Physics is my worst subject and its my freaking major! I understand the math for it inside and out, I understand the concepts in physics the same way. When the teacher lectures I get it.. i sit up front, i ask questions, i pay attention, i take notes. but when it comes to APPLYING what i have learned.. forget it. I draw a blank and fail.</p>

<p>Im not used to this. at my CC i was chummy buddy buddy with all the teachers, our classes were 2.5 hours long. We had hours and days in some cases to do tests.. </p>

<p>hell my midterms and finals were "come in on friday any time between 8am and 6pm and take as long as you need"</p>

<p>here? I get 10 min to get 2 problems done on a physics quiz. I cant do it.. I cant even quantify the problem in 10 freaking min. And there are no points for "I tried" i just get a 0 out of 10.</p>

<p>I know I need to study, but at this point, it seems pointless. I studied for my physics midterm for a week solid. I read every chapter, and worked on all the examples and did problems. And no matter how well i get the concept, I cant apply what I know to the problem, and hence.. 40 hours of study and I got an D- on the midterm.</p>

<p>My confidence is in the flipping gutter. I don't want to study anymore because it seems like a pointless waste of my time. Im 34 years old and have 3 kids. Its bad enough im gone all the time for school.. but to be gone all that time just to fail at what im doing? whats the point?</p>

<p>And to top it all off.. I talked to my adviser last week who told me out of the 90 credits I have and the 2 years of classes I took, only 5 of them transfer to UC Davis. I will have to retake the rest. this puts me at risk to not be eligible for my degree as i will be over the credit limit of 225 by the time I get to senior level material (If i ever do)</p>

<p>I feel really hopeless right now. Does anyone else understand this, or has anyone else dealt with this? My only hope is that everyone else is doing as bad as me and after the curve ill end up with As. ya right</p>

<p>Im so frustrated I want to cry.</p>

<p>I am sorry that you have a bad experience in UCD. I think you will get a better response in the "Parents Forum" as there are lots of experienced parents will give you tips.</p>

<p>But to start, I think you have an adjustment problem. UCD is a big school and unless you are self motivated, you will get less help in acadamics. You need to talk to your professor directly, go to each office hour if there is one and find out what do you have to do to catchup.</p>

<p>The acadamic rigor maybe different from where you came from. By just looking at your CC's class offering or lack of, your CC's acadamic level perhaps is not in the same league as a major research Univ. You need to be humble, learn the ropes fast and go to tutoring sessions and office hours as they are offered. You need to work harder to hang on. Try to pass the classes this quater and pre-study next quater's books in the winter recess so you can get ahead.</p>

<p>I don't know if UCD has the same grade deflation as UCBerkeley, but for the sake of this conversation, let's assume there are some parallels. My son is student at UCBerkeley and is a STEM/EEECs major. A few thoughts.</p>

<p>I read somewhere that the freshman average gpa for someone in EEECs at Berkeley is a 2.3. That number tells me a few things. First, that there are plenty of kids failing out of EEEC classes the first year. And probably a fair number dropping out of those majors completely. And that a 3.0 is probably being a freaking genius. And a 2.3 is "average". So the college expects the students to be struggling and sweating and failing. The question then becomes what to do when on the failing side? Stick it out? Does the student have the ability to pull out of the tailspin? Perseverance is <em>really</em> critical in these EEECs majors, because on some level nearly every student is struggling to survive.</p>

<p>A 2.3 average freshman EEECs gpa tells me that the program is designed somewhat to weed out the students who can't keep up. </p>

<p>I can look at your program and tell you your strategy was all wrong. Freshman first semester I urged my son to take only 3 classes total, and have one of them NOT be a STEM course. I told him it was more important for him to "figure out college" and balance that with making friends and working his part-time job than to squeeze in a 4th class or take all STEM courses. I know you are not a freshman, but a transfer process is like starting new--you are trying to merge into a difficult major with students who have had 2 years to get this under their belts.</p>

<p>I don't know if you have the brain power or the emotional/mental stamina and reserves to pull off a STEM major. You probably do, but you also need to regroup and rethink. If the unit limits are a problem, you might not have the flexibility in the program to give you the time to adjust. I wouldn't freak out--but I would give up the negative thinking and see what you can pull off for this quarter and then reevaluate your options and possible strategies.</p>

<p>Have you made friends/study partners with people who ARE passing these classes? It seems that you are missing some insights that can't be gleaned from sitting in the front row of the class or pounding the books. Try to talk to your classmates and see if you can figure out what piece is missing for you.</p>

<p>Btw - see if you can appeal the transfer classes issue. 5 classes is pretty tiny. Did your GEs transfer? You should push VERY hard to have all GE classes transfer.</p>

<p>I am somewhat related to this and wished I knew this before attending UCSC straight out of High School. Too bad, not many people here can tell you what exactly you need to do to get out of this mess.</p>

<p>First thing first, do not get discourage and drop those classes you did badly on. (Go to office hour and ask for a realistic check, meaning your current grade for the class and what grade you need to pass the class.)</p>

<p>Techniques come before efforts, ALWAYS! I believe there are few people in this forum talked about how to adjust from H.S./CC to college but didn't get much attention. Here is the thing, take on easy load at the beginning and increase the course load as you move on. Apparently your success at CC putted you on wrong mindset that you think you're well prepared. There is a gap between you and UCD students and it make sense you struggle there first quarter. Else it won't be UCD>CC. That's why I say you have to take on easy course load and mix with 1 or 2 major classes. Let it be if it meant to delay your graduation, this is NOT a race. Slowing down and catching your breath is better than burning out.</p>

<p>If necessary, ask if you can go part-time. Use this time to minimize the gap between you and UCD students. Also, this can give you a better understanding on what the school expect from you.</p>

<p>After techniques, you really just have to put in the effort. Go to discussion sections, MSI tutor, office hour. Attend those even though you think you knew everything. Do problem sets after each chapters besides assigned HW. If you majoring in Physic and hoping to do well, you just have to practice more. Try do every single problems after each chapter and ask questions.</p>

<p>Anyways, good luck.</p>

<p>Thank you for all the responses, They are much appreciated. I made an appointment with a tutor specialist and I am going to attend from transfer - reentry sessions for people in my position i guess. </p>

<p>This has been a very humbling experience to say the least. My confidence took a pretty heavy blow. But I am very self motivated and I dont generally get down on myself. It really helped to let out some frustration on these board, and to see that I am not the only one. </p>

<p>The comment about UCs being hard otherwise it wouldn't be different than CC makes a lot of sense. I do remember reading at some point a while back that a typical 4.0 at a CC is like a 2.0 at a UC. I guess I didnt really contemplate what the meant lol.</p>

<p>How would one go about getting the GREs re-evaluated, it seems pretty crappy that almost nothing transferred. I took 3 years of English at my CC and non of it transferred. perhaps I need to go in with the course catalog from my CC and compare them word for word to the course descriptions here at UCD.</p>

<p>Thanks again guys, I am going to buck up and keep at it. I actually think I passed a physics quiz today, Not gonna get my hopes up yet tho :)</p>

<p>Just a story about GE transfer credits--this applies to a different time and place, but may give you insights.</p>

<p>I attended a top-50 LAC that was well renowned for its music school. Junior year someone transferred in as music major from a small, no-name "bible" type private college. Many of her credits transferred, but the top-50 didn't want to take any of her music history sequence with some babble or another about it not being equivalent. This transfer student was steamed and ended up fighting it. I think she got a hold of her old syllabi (contact your old professors if needed!) and went up the food chain until she finally won her appeal.</p>

<p>I would keep pointing out that you were accepted as a junior transfer, have a 225 credit cap, and somehow have only been awarded about 25 transfer credits. Something doesn't compute!</p>

<p>Speaking of Differencial Equ...
I will give my story.. Out of a whimp, I got approved by my school to take Calc II course in Willim and Mary in a summer many moons ago. Well, in the first class, I found some thing wrong. Nothing the prof. taught was I have ever heard of, nevermind to understand it. It turned out, Calc I is required for Calc II, which I never had and they dive right into differencial equ on day one, since it is a short summer session and we had class 4 days a week for 2 hours. The prof. found my lost on my face and asked me what was the problem. I told him I was a total lost and never had Calc I before. So, he offered me two office hours everyday for private Tutoring. I worked my A** off for that summer and I ended up with an A..</p>