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anthropology class

MinnesotaMinnesota Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
edited June 2009 in University of Wisconsin
Hi, I will be a Freshman this Fall at UW and will be attending SOAR soon. I have picked out 3 classes (Calculus, Chemistry, and English) already and would like to select one more class that's not too hard and still can have a total of 16 credits. Any suggestions? Has anyone taken an anthropology class?
Thanks in advance for your advice.
Post edited by Minnesota on

Replies to: anthropology class

  • Madison85Madison85 Registered User Posts: 10,582 Senior Member
    I don't know about anthropology, but at SOAR, they recommend that first semester freshman limit themselves to 12-14 credits. There's a class called the Wisconsin Experience for 1 credit, it meets once a week for 10 weeks, I believe it is under the School of Education, I think it is Counseling Psych 125. When you go to SOAR, there is a place at the Welcome Center (21 N. Park) where you can go from booth to booth gathering information and freebies, there is a booth with info about this class.
  • MinnesotaMinnesota Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    Thank You Madison85!
  • wis75wis75 Registered User Posts: 13,301 Senior Member
    Go ahead with your anthro plans- you can always drop a class if it is too much but you can't add one. Nothing wrong with 16 or 17 credits and 4 classes. Did it with honors classes and chemistry 115 eons ago. There is a crosslisted anthro/linguistics 101 (?#- its been a while) which is also 301- if that's the one son took it - no reason not to go for a higher course #... The average student may go with fewer credits, but many thrive on more academics. If you didn't need study halls in HS there is no need to take only limited credits.
  • MNBadgerMNBadger Registered User Posts: 204 Junior Member
    The times have changed a lot. You're not an academic adviser, Wis75. To recommend 16/17 credits straight across the board based on your experience decades ago is absurd.

    They aren't just making stuff up when they say most students will have an extremely difficult time with more than 15 credits. I'd really recommend listening to the SOAR staff when it comes to academics. The program is based on a lot of emerging research with regard to the first-year experience and visible trends among students at UW.
  • wis75wis75 Registered User Posts: 13,301 Senior Member
    Please reread my post- where is "straight across the board"? Current students do take 16-18 credits, with honors calculus and science, now. Maybe the AVERAGE student needs a lighter load, but just as some students thrive on a no study hall/AP courses load in HS there are plenty of UW students who will thrive on a nonwimpy credit load. The general advice is for a lighter load, but that doesn't mean that a student shouldn't take a heavier load if s/he feels s/he wants to. Those that end up getting into professional and grad schools don't always take the average load and shouldn't be discouraged from doing so. One consideration is the number of classes- 4 classes with a 5 credit chemistry and a 5 credit calculus means 16- 17 credits to allow for 3 or 4 credit social science/humanities. There is probably disproportionately more work in a 1 or 2 credit course (btw, anyone choosing chemistry and calculus is probably very capable of handling those 16-17 credits and the labs hours don't take that much extra time). This student should be encouraged to go for it if s/he wants to. It could be more difficult to have 5 or 6 classes' work to juggle than just 4.

    The times have NOT changed regarding college course loads under 18 credits. There will always be students who hear the general advice and need to know they can deviate from it if it makes sense to them. Students should not be afraid of doing more than the average, especially when they can take a course they want instead of substituting a junk course just because it has the number of credits to meet an average load. The honors advisor did let my son know how to get into a full extra 1 credit class if he wanted it- that was on top of 16 credits- they do not currently discourage those who can handle more credits from taking them. As always, they have general guidelines for students so they come to SOAR with realistic expectations. My take on this thread is that a student doesn't know s/he can go beyond the general guidelines and needed to hear it was okay to do so.

    PS to the OP- sounds like a great schedule to balance the science/math, refreshing to have a reason to study something outside of those, and make progress towards your degree. You know your capability, you can do just fine. No reason to be scared by college courses, you have been well prepared by HS.
  • barronsbarrons Registered User Posts: 24,851 Senior Member
    I agree with Wis75. And you can always drop one anyway with no penalty fairly well into the semester.
  • MinnesotaMinnesota Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    Thank you everyone for your comments/advices! I really appreciate them!!
  • PathetiquePathetique Registered User Posts: 679 Member
    My personal opinion is that you might want to keep with what you have, especially since you're taking calculus and chemistry. I disagree with saying "anyone choosing chemistry and calculus is probably very capable of handling those 16-17 credits". Often people take the two for breadth requirements not realizing how much work it is. But others do fine, it's true. It is different than years ago, but if you feel confident, go for it.

    People spend hours a week on the homework for those two classes alone though (and the quizzes, and the labs for Chem and so on), so you'll have a plateful. My very first class my first semester at Madison was Math 222 (second semester calc). The very first thing the professor did was write our homework on the board. All the ~65 problems due next week, followed by a "Freshman, welcome to college". :] Chemistry isn't much better, from what I observed. It's a lot of work, every week, so be prepared for that. There is a lot of help for people in math and chem classes though, so you can use those if need be.

    You have seven more semesters and three summers ahead of you. If you aren't waiting until second semester junior year to declare an engineering major or whatever, you'll be fine and graduate on time. Some of your breadth requirements might even be met within your required courses for your majors. One thing I really suggest doing is looking at the class requirements (often not within the major subject itself) for some majors you're really interested in and taking some of those classes. It's one thing I wish I had done.

    That said, I think it might be a good idea to take the anthro class (or another class you're interested in), not even to just meet a requirement, but because it's something you probably haven't taken before, and it might really interest you. Antro would really be the only thing you could drop though, because dropping chem or calc would put you below 12. (Unless they're less than 5). And dropping a class is not a big deal. You're not quitter, lazy or whatever. It happens. So there's a lot to think about with it.

    wis75 makes a good point that it's okay to go beyond the general guidelines. I agree with that, but I also think you do need to know that it's okay to stay within them. I was someone who thought it was total bs to take only 12-14 credits first semester, it was too easy, only slackers did, blah blah blah. That's not true. I took 17 and ended up dropping my 5 credit calc class. I took on way too big a load because I didn't want to "waste" a semester and bunch of other garbage I spouted at myself. I too was one of those kids that took all the AP classes in high school with no study halls, so I was by no means a slacker in high school.

    I also ignored my advisor who said not to take 222 even if I had passed Calc AB and all that jazz, but to take 221, and I ignored her when she told me it's not the only class that will get Quan B out of the way. There's so many more options than math 222, it's ridiculous. Heck, I wasn't even interested in 222, but I thought I had to take it to succeed, which is not true. By taking it I didn't take a class or two that I was really interested in. It's my personal situation, but I know plenty of other people fell in to it.

    So yeah. Went on a tangent or two there, but I think there was an answer in there somewhere. :] lol
  • djdietzdjdietz Registered User Posts: 135 Junior Member
    Very good discussion on this topic. Good point all around. My daughter went to SOAR last week. She knew the "12 to 15 " credit recommendation before hand, but also knew that there are a lot of fairly well defined area's that she would like to explore too. For a little backgroud, she applied to about 10 "High end LAC's" in the upper midwest and UW. After visits and all, she decided on UW, but I think still really likes the idea of a LAC type education - as opposed to a more specific or focused in one area of research education. As I read on another thread a student said "I am going to prove that I can get an exceptional LAC at a high end research institute :).

    She had a little trouble with the student adviser mostly because of the 15 credit suggestion, but also for wanting to take Journalism 201 - a Com B and writing intensive course. My daughter pointed out to the counselor that she tested out of Com A and LOVES to write - to the point that she has been published in national teen writing journals. In the end it came down to her sticking to her guns to which the advisors basically said "OK, but Ive warned you" type of thing.

    To many of the harder science/math types, her schedule might look easy; Journalism 201, Psych 202, Art 108, Art 112, Inter-HE501, Consoling Psych. 125. I believe it is a total of 16 credits. She wanted to sign up for another Art class until she had time to review them on Ratemyproffesor.com and then drop one of them, but was unable to I believe because it would have put her over the 18 credit limit. She is likely to major in English with am emphasis in Creative Writing, but the only CW class open to freshman was already full for first semester - thus the exploration into Jour 201.

    One of her thoughts is to go into the "Art Therapy" area of psychology - but at the same time, I think she would be happy if she could make a living painting, writing, and drawing, but realizes that she might have to find a "practical" way to do that - as in employable job skills. But then again when someone ever tells her something to the effect of "it hard to do that" she always says "someone has to, why not me?"

    DJD
  • MNBadgerMNBadger Registered User Posts: 204 Junior Member
    Psych202 is regarded as one of the hardest entry level courses on this campus. Between the studio times, J201 and Psych202, your daughter will seriously, seriously have her hands full. It's a very solid schedule, and while it is different than science-laden students, it is not necessarily "easy."

    J201 is typically believed to be one of the hardest CommB's the campus offers.

    All around, good luck. If she likes these areas of study and works hard throughout the first semester, it will be a great start to her college career.
  • jnm123jnm123 Registered User Posts: 743 Member
    On the J-School website it does state that Intro to Mass Comm (sounds kinda tame, doesn't it?) is not recommended to be taken by 1st semester freshman. That being said, Prof. Jack Mitchell teaches it in the fall (maybe the spring too), and he founded the show 'All Things Considered' on NPR many years ago. My D was at SOAR last week & unfortunately J-201 did not work into her schedule, but I'm advising her to take it at some point whether she majors in journalism or not.
  • PathetiquePathetique Registered User Posts: 679 Member
    To many of the harder science/math types, her schedule might look easy; Journalism 201, Psych 202, Art 108, Art 112, Inter-HE501, Consoling Psych. 125.

    Not really, for a first semester freshman at least. I can only second what MNBadger said. Psych 202 and Journalism 201 are pretty tough courses. Part of the reason Psych 202 is so hard is because of the way it's graded. I had a friend who took AP Psych and passed with a 5, and it was still a pretty tough course for her.
    She is likely to major in English with am emphasis in Creative Writing, but the only CW class open to freshman was already full for first semester - thus the exploration into Jour 201.

    Before the summer ends, there will probably be people who do drop it from their schedule. I can guarantee it. You just kinda have to check every day. ;] So it still could be an option for her, she just has to check up on it every now and then, unless it isn't worth it to her.

    Honestly, I think she could probably wait a semester to take J201. But it's her schedule. Good luck to her nonetheless. There's no need to "ease" in if she doesn't need to. And if she does well, that is a good start to college for her. :]
  • wis75wis75 Registered User Posts: 13,301 Senior Member
    The number of credits and the number of courses matter. It is easier to have a heavier credit load and do well if a student has a real interest and ability in the subject matter. A well prepared chemistry major may enjoy the time spent with chemistry, and math also, the student who is using them to meet other reqs will see it as work, not pleasure. Likewise the humanities major may enjoy the extra hours spent with a full load in humanities- and will probably have abilities that mean less time is needed to do the work than for some of us who despise writing papers. There is no one right answer, no "one size fits all" in college. There is a paradigm shift from HS- it is okay to love spending time with academics and to love subjects most others don't. I wouldn't be suprised to hear that the over 5000 students who graduate each year with a bachelor's degree all had unique lists of courses taken. There are a lot of first semester freshmen who successfully plunge right in and take the classes they want without concerns over being new at college- do what feels right for you, not us.
This discussion has been closed.