Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Course Information

So, you’re new to Michigan’s course selection process, huh? You probably thought it would be something like your high school experience when you pretty much followed a general path with all of your friends. But at Michigan, with literally hundreds of courses to choose from, it’s very easy to find yourself confused and wanting to rip your hair. The LSA Course Guide book really doesn’t help since it doesn’t talk about how good or bad the class really is. The online registration page itself is a pain to your brain, and backpacking on Wolverine Access sucks because of all the glitches and bugs.

So what to do….

As a senior, I’ve been there and done that. For four years. And I survived. Since I will be leaving at the end of this academic year, I hope to impart to you a small token of knowledge, wisdom, and knowhow so that you may do the same when time comes. Unfortunately, I can’t possibly write out all the tips and tricks. So, the resources and information briefed below should be taken as a very general guide to your survival.! Ever heard of it? I’m sure you have, but this is one of the most useful sites when backpacking and registering for classes. This is a fantastic website that informs you about which professors are BOSS, which are ‘eh…’, which are hard graders, and which are easy-A-givers. Although you should take the comments and ratings on this website with a grain of salt (or perhaps a fistful) since they’re merely opinions by other students, the ratings are for the most part reliable and accurate.

Okay, so you’ve picked the best class and the best professor. But many students realize that these classes are filled quickly. If you’ve been waitlisted, do two things: write an awesome e-mail and anticipate for the worst. Writing an awesome e-mail means you should e-mail that professor with a succinct e-mail correspondence. Remember to show why you really want to take this course, and ask what steps you should take to get in the class. Anticipating for the worst means you should pretend you didn’t get in the class and have backup classes. Then, when you get in the preferred class you’ll feel great. If you don’t get in, the world hasn’t crashed and the sky isn’t falling apart because you were smart had a Plan B.

Regarding your weekly schedule, it can be a good idea to give yourself an extra day of weekend. Frontloading your week can give you a head start on your weekend plans every week. This can also work with backloading your week to have every Mondays off. I found this to be useful (especially having Fridays off) if you’re planning frequent road trips, long weekends, getting your freak on every Thursday night, or having a chill day to attend to your personal life and errands. You can also schedule your classes so that you’ll have Wednesdays off for a mini-weekend. If you’re a freshman or sophomore, try these options when you still have time. Then, when senior year rolls around, you won’t have to spend all five weekdays in class :)

On a concluding note, one of the best resources during my college years was KSA members, especially upperclass KSA members. With insightful knowledge and knowhow like the ones above, KSA uppers are treasure chest of information and tips. They always welcome questions about course registration and classes, and they’ll be an amazing asset for your convenience. Good luck!

By: David J Kim

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