Tag Archives: papers

Learn to Write, Stem Majors

Just last week I watched one of my friends trod through grading some assignments. For anyone of you who is familiar with the pain that is grading, you know how horrible it is. For those of you who haven’t yet had the pleasure I will say this, it’s worse than actually doing the assignment. No matter how much you suffered writing that paper or finish that lab I can guarantee you that grading it was worse. Why? Because the person who graded it had to do it 20 times while you only had to go through that hell once.

As I watched my friend grade those papers I felt nothing but sympathy and gratitude. Sympathy that he had to do that and gratitude that I only had to grade lab assignments and not papers. Because I’m going to be honest, there’s nothing worse than grading papers. When you grade a paper you’ve got to not only grade for content but also for grammar. Which is annoying and time consuming. Papers are often peppered with mistakes, some serious and some small. The line between too harsh and too lenient is blurry, making it difficult to know how many points to take off exactly.

The reason I bring this up is because I see the worst offenders for this sort of poor writing is STEM majors. We STEM majors have a lot of catching up to do when it comes to our ability to write, it’s almost sad. The worst thing about it all is that we make fun of the humanities while we do it. A majority of science majors can’t string three words together into a cohesive sentence but we delight in making fun of the people who can. I’m guilty of that myself, I’ve got at least a dozen English major jokes in my arsenal ready for use at any time.

But honestly? We STEM majors need to get it together. Either we have to stop making fun of the people who can do what we can’t and treat them with the respect they deserve. Or we need to stop scorning the skills altogether and learn how to do it ourselves. A lot of STEM majors will claim that they don’t know how to write, that their brain doesn’t work like that. Coming from the same group that’ll look down on an Art major who can’t do calculus. It’s funny because that Art major is going to need calculus way less than the STEM major will need to be able to write.

Pull yourselves together STEM majors and learn to write!

Some Advice with Paper Writing

Everyone in college inevitably has to write a few papers for some of their classes. It is all part of the college experience, especially when you end up writing a paper at 3 in the morning when it is due at 10 that morning. We have all had to pull a few all-nighters to get our work done. Part of the reason for that is always the time getting away from us. We think we have enough time, that the paper is not due for another week, or four days, then suddenly it is the night before it is due and none of us have even made the word document. It would probably work out better if we tried to write a small bit at a time rather than all at once.

There are some pros to writing a paper in a single night. You can spend all of the extra time working on the other homework that piles up. We all end up with an overwhelming amount of work eventually; sometimes the best course of action is to put off that big paper to get other work done, especially when it is due much sooner than the paper. But we could do better with a bit of time management and a willingness to spread the work around.

A more efficient way to go about writing a paper, especially as we near the end of the school semester, is to write small portions of it over the course of the week before it is due. Spend an hour and write an introduction. The next, you can take another hour to make your first body paragraph. Keep up that trend and before you know it, you will have a full and finished paper. Admittedly, this is just one way to go about writing it, and it has its cons too. It can be difficult to start and stop when writing a paper and maintain the same level of quality, but it is just some advice for the upcoming weeks of finals.

Countdown to the end of the semester

If you’re like me, you’ve been counting down the days until the end of the semester. 25 days, 3 hours, 4 minutes, and 52 seconds. You could say I’m dying for this semester to be over, but you said it, not me. I’m not sure what it was about this semester that has made it feel unbelievably long, but that’s exactly how it’s felt. Everyday, I wake up 6:30, sometimes 7:00 because I can’t get out of bed, and I drive to Radford, park my car in 2 hour or 4 hour parking, walk to class, sit in class and desperately wait for it to end, and the I do that again and again until the school day is over, walk back to my car, and drive home. It’s truly the most agonizing, tiring, and frustrating cycle you can be in. I just want to it be over.

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“If you’re like me, you’ve been counting down the days until the end of the semester.”

This semester, because financial aid here at Radford is kind of useless, I was unable to register for class until a week and half after registration had opened, leaving me with zero class in my major still open. It really sucks when you’re super excited to take classes in your major, classes that you are interested in, but you can’t get into any because other people lost a form you supposedly “didn’t sign.”

I was forced to take four general education class, political science, geology, music, and sociology. I have to say that sociology isn’t that bad, in fact, I like it and I’m good at it, but my political science and geology classes are slowly killing me, taking out my soul and eating it for dinner. It’s not that they are particularly hard, it’s simply the fact that they are so boring my eyes feel like they’re catching on fire when I’m in class. It’s amazing how hard it can be to go to class when all you do in said class is cry about how terrible it is. It’s also pretty difficult to do well, or want to do well, in that class because you could care less about what your professor has to say.

This semester has been the worst semester of all time, although, it’s only my second one but who’s counting. If anything happens to my schedule next semester, I will probably drop out and live on the streets of Radford, telling my sad story of how the university did me wrong. But here’s to hoping!