I’m not quite surewhere the last 3 months went, but semester 2 is right around the corner. Thatmeans, it’s time to start choosing my classes again. Now that I’ve done thisbefore, I feel like I’m a seasoned veteran. No, really, even though this willonly be my second time choosing classes, I learned from my mistakes of theprocess last time. Whether this is your first time choosing classes or yourlast, there’s still things to learn about the process, I’m sure of it.
Start the Process Early
Looking back on lastsemester, the biggest problem I had with my schedule was the fact that Iliterally enrolled 3 days before classes actually started. Because of that, Ididn’t have any say at all in choosing my classes or professors. I just got putwherever there was an empty seat. Horrible idea. I was supposed to take anEnglish class this past semester but there were no empty seats, so I was toldto just show up the first day and ask to be put in the class. Yeah… that didn’twork. So, get on it early! You’ll have much more say because you will have madeit before the crowd of last minute students are running rampant trying to snagthe last seats.
Talk to Your Advisor
When it comes tochoosing new classes, it’s usually required or strongly suggested to meet withyour advisor. They know your schedule, major, and what’s needed to graduate.They can help you set up classes that will work best for you. If you get a goodadvisor, you can be upfront. Ask them if a certain class is going to be hard orboring. Usually, they’ll be able to give you some honest insight. Your advisoris there to help make the process easier.
Weigh Your Options
While you’re meetingwith your advisor, weigh your class options. Usually, there will be more thanone option for a subject. For instance, I’m having to take a humanities classnext year, but that class can come in different forms. I can either take ahistory class or other options like philosophy or ethics. Don’t just pick aclass to pick one. Really think about the class and if you will actually beinterested in the material.
Choose Your Schedule Wisely
I specificallyremember being at orientation and hearing the speaker tell us to choose classtimes that we know will work for us. She said that if we know we strugglewaking up, don’t choose a morning class. Maybe you know that you get tiredaround lunch time and after that, so don’t schedule an afternoon class. Thatadvice has stuck with me since. If you choose bad class times, you’re settingyourself up for failure. Really think about you and when you work best, thenchoose your class times. Also, try to keep your classes in the same area. Thatway you aren’t having to travel all over the place each day. If you have a fewclass options that you know will be in the same general area or campus,schedule them for the same day. It’s important to know your limit, though.Don’t overschedule yourself to the point of exhaustion. Again, your advisor canhelp you make your schedule work best for you.
Look Up Your Professors on RateMyProfessors.com
Oh. My. Word. I wishI had known about this my first semester. It would have saved me a ton of grieffrom a really bad professor. Seriously, use this to your advantage.RateMyProfessors.com is a website where you can type in a professor’s name andratings from former or current students will pop up. It will tell you theprofessor’s overall level of difficulty, their quality of teaching, and if theywould take one of their classes again. This website is a godsend, and Idefinitely used it this time around. Having a good professor is a big factor indoing well in a class.
Now that you’ve gotsome info, go meet with your advisor and choose some classes. Remember, if aclass doesn’t seem like it’s going to work out after you’ve attended a coupleclasses, you can always drop it. I’m definitely keeping the whole drop/add inmind this next semester just in case.