On Homework

Here’s another thing I’ve noticed about college. In high school, everybody complained about the workload all the time. “Too much math homework! So much reading! Augh!”. Well… so far, it’s exactly the same in college.

This doesn’t surprise me, but it seems like it should. After all, college is voluntary. You don’t have to go. And even if you do feel like you have to go, you have a great variety of choice in where to go. If you don’t want to read the Iliad, the Odyssey, the Aeneid, Beowulf, and Gawaine and the Green Knight in your first semester, why the heck would you come to UD? The distinguishing characteristic of our school is that everyone takes the “core courses”: you have to take four semesters of “literary traditions”, starting with Lit Trad 1; you have to take three semesters of philosophy, and which philosophy classes you’ll take are set; and so on.

I can understand people complaining about, for example, the one math class they have to take – they came here in spite of the fact that they have to take a math class, not because of it. But if you were going to come to UD in spite of the fact that you have to take the core classes, not because of it, why wouldn’t you go somewhere else?

I suspect part of it is that the people I talk to are mostly freshmen, and they’re used to high school where you complain about having to do work all the time. But then again, it doesn’t seem like the upper-classmen complain any less…

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2 Responses to On Homework

  1. psychcentral says:

    Sometime I think people might be ventilating rather than complaining. It’s sort of like the “misery loves company” type of behavior.

  2. Stephen Wang says:

    It seems to me that, whereas at Cistercian we’d complain and often try to mitigate the workload for a class, at Rice students will still complain among themselves but not really expect the work for a course to change based on anything they say; we all just seem to accept high workloads and be stressed out about it (yet move forward).

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