Weekly quizzes

I took my first Chemistry quiz. I stayed up all night because I wanted to get a 100% and make a great impression on my professor. I may or may not have gotten mostly everything right (or worth partial credit), except I know for sure that I misread an exponent as I tried to work quickly.  I thought she was trying to trick us, so I gleefully answered it. I couldn’t see the clock, so I just worked faster after one person handed in their quiz.

I don’t know why I’m so darn slow while I’m taking a quiz. I think it’s probably because I’m trying to think and not be scared. It takes me twice as much energy to focus and calm myself down. I always want that feeling of mastery and confidence but I never get it. I just end up feeling lucky. I hope I get at least 7 points out of this somehow. It sucks. I wanted it to be perfect. It sucks that I have to continue to worry about the mistakes I make because I make mistakes. I feel better that the smart pre-pharm Cal grad also might have  messed up.

I just want to eat lunch and take a long nap. I haven’t been interested in sleeping much lately. Part of me feels like I don’t deserve to sleep or that sleeping is boring. It’s really weird. I don’t get why I’m like this. It’s so ridiculous. God, Priya, chill out already and stop thinking about how you feel or what you’re worried about. Christ Almighty.

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Slushy, wintry mix=cancelled classes

The college parking lot was empty when I drove in this morning. Apparently classes had been cancelled due to a rumored Nor’easter. It’s hailing a little outside, but the hail is extremely tiny. I’m wondering how much money the colleges loses by cancelling classes on the spur of the moment like this. They have actually furloughed professors on some days.

I came home, and I’m trying to get started on chemistry, but I feel anxious about it. We’re doing Chemical Kinetics, and I’m not getting it that easily, so I feel impatient. Also, she gave a “How much do you remember from 1st semester?” pop quiz on Monday that she said we didn’t have to turn in. It stung to not have done as well as I hoped, so I didn’t turn it in. Neither did this Chinese girl, so I don’t feel like I’m a moron. Though I definitely need to get my anxiety under control when it comes to chemistry (since, you know, the PCAT and all).

Also, I could use some additional time learning how to hard focus. I know I feel pretty disappointed with how much time I waste, just to feel emotionally ready to concentrate. I’ve been using High Expectations Asian Father as a motivator (that’s how bad I feel about my inability to be completely studious).

Le sigh. Happy Wednesday.

Hello, Spring 2011

So school begins again tomorrow. I’m taking Chem 102 with a professor who is reputed to be very good, and also ends up having a C median. My Chem 101 professor (who was nice, but flaky and frustrating)  slammed her. However, she was named “Educator of the year,” and I think the people who work hard in her class end up giving her good reviews. She went to a very well reputed college that is grouped with mine. She does, however, come from a fairly racist and backwards state. But because she went to a college as liberal as mine, I’m not going to judge her for being from the afore-hinted at state.

She sent out the syllabus a week before our first class (she gets points for that), and I started the homework, which is on Chemical Kinetics. I feel frustrated with myself because I’m not completing the homework as fast as I wish. Obviously I have to be better acquainted with the material, or look at a Chemistry for Dummies book.  I am so impatient. I want to know it already, so I can enjoy it. But, as always, everything takes time.

In other news, I made up flashcards for the Biology portion of the PCAT. I took Set 1 of the Dr. Collins PCAT Study Guide for Biology exam. It went better than I thought, mainly because I studied the biology packet. There are things I need to continue studying and working at, and I have my biology stuff on an online flashcard platform that is accessible through iPod Touch. I hope that by downloading the app, I can get to my already existing flashcards.

I also came across some disappointing and confusing news. The PCAT, in 2011, will be in a new format. They’ve gone for computer-based testing. I know everyone likes thinking they’re modern and feel like they must adapt whatever they’re doing to utilize modern conveniences, but I wish that Pearson could give people a break. I am stick of looking at a computer screen. It would have been great to actually touch the test.

Furthermore, the traditional June PCAT is no more, and it will not be on a Saturday. I’m supposed to take Physics this summer. They’re offering it on July 20th and July 27th. Those are the only dates they give after February. I’m sort of confused there isn’t more chatter about this on the SDN PCAT forum. I didn’t see any whining or moaning about it, and I would like to, because it’s sort of a pain. I have expectations, darn it, and I don’t know if they get that taking it in July is a pain if someone wants to apply ED somewhere.

I have other questions that I’m not sure about asking. When do I create a PharmCAS profile? Presumably after I take the PCAT. Oh, and I have to figure out who to ask for a recommendation from. Presumably my Microbiology professor. But who else? I don’t want to bring attention to the fact that I took Biology and A&P online. I should ask my Chem 101 prof, but I find her frustrating. I’ll see if I can do well enough in Chem 102 that my prof, who will not disgrace me with misspellings  (being a graduate of a college with a good reputation), will do it. Of course, that puts the pressure on. Must do extremely well on exams and quizzes.

Window of opportunity

Happy New Year. I can’t believe it’s 2011. The feeling is a little bittersweet. Partly because I suspect most people think I’m old and I should have it all figured out by now. I should probably have a house and a car and a career. I should probably be married. I should probably be seriously considering kids because I won’t have any good eggs left in a couple of years.  I certainly shouldn’t be thinking about pharmacy school. Since I have a couple of degrees, I shouldn’t be at community college looking at a a program that will take up at least the next five years of my life. Think of the opportunity cost.

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When you can’t quite eff it

I’ve been so frustrated with my chemistry professor’s style of teaching that I have sometimes felt unmotivated and had to fight through it. I’d prefer if she did samples of problems that she demonstrated in class. I’d prefer if she didn’t make mistakes. I’d prefer it if she and I weren’t on two different wavelengths. This is what I was worried about when deciding to attend a brick and mortar school. She is a pretty lousy communicator. She makes mistakes constantly.

And I think a good teacher gives you confidence that you have all the tools necessary to do well. With her, I sometimes just want to quit trying. And that’s incredibly childish of me. This class, this grade is about me. I have to learn chemistry. I have to do well. There’s no two ways about it. I can finally forget that she exists, because I did all the work necessary for her now. Now it’s about the department final exam. My intellectual tantrum isn’t going to get me into pharmacy school. I’ve already signed up for a chemistry professor next semester who has a better reputation.

So no matter. Study with some peace of mind and quit worrying for God’s sake.

Final exams and the difficulty of staying positive

So I got an A in Microbiology on Exam 4 (90), Lab Practical 2 (92-I have a story to tell about this), and 50 out of 50 for the final lab report unknown. This means I didn’t have to take the final exam this morning, which theoretically gave me more time to study for Chemistry. Of course, I’m struggling, mainly due to some problems I have with the last 3 chapters.

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Phew-cubed

My prof posted the scores. I got a 90. With bonus points scored in lab today (5), I can round it to a collective 95% earned today. Phew phew phew phew. No final (because the final can’t replace the lab practical).

Oh my Lord. I can finally take a nap.

After I calculate what score I need on the lab practical.

Yay! Now I can focus on the chemistry lab exam, which my professor said people who do well in the class sometimes fail, after reminding us that if we don’t do well on it, we fail the whole course, lecture and lab.

Her pep talks leave a lot to be desired.

Hindsight

I’ve been a little stressed lately. And I think, by not being totally honest with myself about it and not having stayed strong emotionally, I sort of screwed up. I’ll try to explain what happened.

Last Monday, my Chem prof decided to schedule  a chapter test covering 4 chapters for this Monday. Inside, I freaked. I sorted of freaked out at her, too, and told her, “I have a huge exam in Microbiology that same day. I don’t think I can do both.”

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Note to self

Dear Priya,

You’ve never shown a gift for time management, so let me use this post to remind you that your chemistry homework took 4 hours.

Yes, 4 hours.

You haven’t even looked at Microbiology yet.

And you aren’t even done with preparing your chemistry lab questions so you can study for the quiz instead of fretting over lab.

Good Lord.

Love,

Your face

In ProcrastiNation

So last week, I took my first physics quiz. The next day, I dropped the class.

I did well on the quiz, but Chemistry had me so incredibly worried. Plus, I was bummed that I couldn’t finish my physics homework in 8 hours, meaning I couldn’t read and absorb the chapter and then finish the homework.

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