Posted By: Ben Hertzman on November 23, 2007
So, it’s that wonderful time of the year again at Queen’s (and no, I don’t mean when you get the email from your prof telling you that your 8:30 AM Friday morning class has been cancelled). It’s actually the time when exams are right around the corner, and most of the big assignments for the year are due.
Now, I know that when I was making the shift from high school to university, I wasn’t really sure about the kind of workload that I would be getting. I knew that it would likely be heavier than it was in high school, but I wasn’t sure to what extent it would be. Reading last year’s blogs definitely helped with my choice of schools, and I know that since this was a concern of mine, I’m sure that a lot of you guys are likely thinking about this too.
So, to start off, one of the things to think about once you get here is that you have A LOT less class that you do in high school. Although you take 5 courses in the fall and 6 in the winter (including your arts elective), assuming each class only meets for three hours a week, you’re looking at only 15-18 hours of class per week. That really does free up a lot of time to do the readings for class, and also to get the assignments done.
In terms of the workload, its really not that bad. While I do tend to procrastonate quite a bit (hard to admit, but it’s true), I still get all the work done, although at some points it can be stressful. In most of my classes, we don’t get that many assignments (for example, there are 3 spread throughout the term in Accounting and Economics; and there are 5 in Calculus), but the assignments all tend to be due around the same time. In these cases, it really pays to work ahead, in addition to dividing up the work evenly with members of your group.
On that note, most of the work that’s done in Commerce is actually done in groups of 4-6 people. I have separate groups that were chosen for each of my Commerce classes, and it has worked out great, because we have developed a routine for completing our assignments, and we have done relatively well on each one so far. In Economics, the situation is a bit different. In Econ, you don’t have to work in a group if you don’t want to, but if you choose to, you can pick up to three other people from the same section as your own (the sections have about 300 people in them each, so you don’t have to worry about not finding someone you know) to work with. Again, in all cases, the assignments aren’t bad at all if you space the work out and put effort into them.
Anyway, I know that was a lot to digest for now, but I hope that this helps to ease your worries about next year’s workload.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment, and one of the other bloggers or I would be happy to respond.