Full Moons

I added another class this semester. I’ve been going along fine, thinking the course work and work load hasn’t really been too bad. Multiple times I’ve thought I could do more. But I ended up registering today for the Neuroscience intensive that’s being held over Spring Break. We’re required to take two electives, offered on a 3-year rotation during break times. Neuroscience is a class I would really want to take, and since it only comes around once every three years, this semester is more or less the one time I could take it. Last night in class I overheard classmates talking about how they have required readings and 29 quizzes that need to be completed before class even starts. I contacted the teacher this morning, trying to get a better idea to see if this was something I could realistically do.

She sent the syllabus and I instantly thought, “Nope.” Over 1,000 pages of reading for the quizzes, plus a case analysis due at the end of the elective week, a lab report from a sheep brain dissection, plus a 15-page research paper with at least 10 scholarly sources in APA format. The class is held during the day for a week, and then you have to turn in your paper two weeks after that, so by March 25th. It’s not even the daunting prospect of trying to cram in, take, and pass that many quizzes, or writing that long of a paper that bothered me most. It was the realization that taking this class is highly likely to diminish any chance I might’ve had of meeting my goal of graduating summa cum laude.

I was explaining this at my counselor appointment this afternoon. Not being that far out from completing the program herself, I was interested in her input. She said this particular professor was tough, which I’d gathered. The rest of the electives aren’t that different, with most of them requiring prep work similar to what she was asking. I’d missed a meeting earlier in the semester where I probably could’ve learned some of this information sooner. All this to say is that I am trying to be mindful not to overdo it or pile on too many new things at once. I want to get done with school faster if I can, but I also don’t want to be overly absent from my family or set myself back with unnecessary stress.

I’m positive that at some point I’m going to end up regretting this. Nothing is set in stone so I can always drop it if I need to. The problem is I’m fairly interested in neuroscience and really want to take the class. I ran past my husband the idea of auditing it. Because this professor requires any auditing students to still complete the required reading ahead of time (speed-reading would surely have to count in this case), and since I’d still be gone for that week during the weekdays attending the class (8AM-12 or 8AM-4), he didn’t think it made much sense to not go ahead and get the credit for it. “That means you’d pretty much just be doing it for fun,” he said. “Yeah, basically”, I said, unashamed and perfectly sure of my thoughts and beliefs.

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