So my first week of Grad School: Take II has passed. I’m taking three classes and TA-ing an undergrad course. REVIEWS!
PHIL 9276: Philosophical Foundations of Modern Physics
Word for word on the syllabus: “Week 2: Newton vs. Leibniz.”
PHIL 9606: Hume and Reid on Mental Representation
Next to the veritable demigod that is Leibniz, Hume is my favorite philosopher. I really like the way he tackled he idea of causality and how simply observing a “cause” action and then an “effect” action doesn’t necessarily guarantee that the cause actually CAUSED the effect.
Anyway, this class will involve reading a metric crap ton of Hume plus many of his critics, including Reid.
PHIL 9889: Environmental Philosophy
This is going to be a near exact repeat of my philosophy senior seminar at UI. Which I’m okay with, ’cause it was interesting stuff.
PHIL 2020: Basic Logic (TA)
Yay, logic! This is an undergrad class full of non-philosophy majors and is taught by a PhD student. Once we get to PhD level we’re allowed to actually teach classes; at the MA level we’re just graders/office-hour-holders. I’m hoping that since I’m TA-ing logic for both semesters now that I’ll be able to ask them to actually let me teach it next year, ‘cause I think it would probably be one of the better classes for me to teach given my background.
Here are the classes I’m probably going to take at Western this semester and next. The MA is only a year-long thing there, so at the end of next summer I’ll be done with that and going onto the PhD, assuming everything goes well. For the MA, we need to take six half-courses in total.
Here are the ones I’m wanting:
Philosophy 9276A: Philosophical Foundations of Modern Physics
“This seminar will examine the background to contemporary physics, particularly emphasizing two aspects: the philosophical views of space, time, and matter that were part of classical physics, and the views of the nature of scientific theory in general– in particular, of the roles of theory and experience, and the relations between mathematical structure and physical reality– that informed, and were informed by, developments in physics. Authors to be discussed include Newton, Leibniz, Euler, Kant, Helmholtz, Maxwell, Duhem, Mach, Poincaré, Einstein, Heisenberg, Schlick, Carnap, and others.”
Philosophy 9606A: Hume and Reid on Mental Representation
“This course will focus on Hume’s and Reid’s contrasting accounts of the foundations of knowledge and the workings of the mind.”
Philosophy 4993F/9889A: Environmental Philosophy
“This course in environmental philosophy explores some ethical and epistemological issues that arise in the contexts of conservation and restoration ecology. We commonly ear that we ought to preserve biodiversity. What are the moral justifications for such a widely accepted normative claim? Finally, this course will also look into the issue of unpredictability. Scientific and applied ecology were for a long time deeply influenced by an equilibrium paradigm in which nature was conceived of as balanced and predictable. But in the 1970s, ecologists started challenged this view and now endorse what some call a “non-equilibrium” view of nature. We will reflect on this new ecology and how it can affect the way in which policy makers and ecologists approach ecological management.”
Philosophy 9277B: Philosophy of Probability
“This course is an introduction to philosophical issues connected with probability. Emphasis will be on the strengths and limitations of a probabilistic approach to confirmation in science. Topics will include interpretations of probability, Bayesian reasoning and its relation to classical statistical inference, how to understand conditional probability, and application of probabilistic reasoning to case studies in science.”
Philosophy 9279B: Science and Values
“This seminar considers the roles of values in science from four angles: (1) Values in scientific epistemology: heuristics and pragmatics; (2) Whose science is it?: authority, governance and ownership in science; (3) Scientific communication and moral life: trust, testimony, and obligation; (4) Choices: goals, risks, and the aims of science.”
Philosophy 9608B: Consciousness
“We will consider several philosophical theories of consciousness, including the HOT theory, AIR theory, multiple drafts, and dual aspect theory. We will also consider the role of science in explaining consciousness.”
So because I’m me, I’ve decided to plan out a hypothetical “this is what I’d take next semester if I were still at the U of I” schedule. No Flash-made chart this time, ‘cause CS3 blows and I can’t find the CD for good ol’ Flash 5.
STAT 507: Experimental Design (9:30 – 10:20)
PHIL 446: Metaphysics (1:10 – 2:20)
MATH 430: Advanced Linear Algebra (2:30 – 3:20)
PHYS 111: General Physics I (9:30 – 10:45)
THE 305: Intermediate Acting (11:00 – 12:15)
ENGL 492: Advanced Fiction Writing (3:30 – 4:45)
STAT 404: Statistics for the Life and Behavioral Sciences (5:30 – 6:45)
CASP 509: Psychometrics (5:30 – 8:20)
MUSA 119: Marching Band (12:30 – 1:20; 12:30 – 1:45)
Yeah, it’s only 25 credits, ‘cause I’m sure if I’d petitioned for more than that again they’d deny me again (and because, of course, none of the physics labs would fit with this schedule, so I’d just take the lecture component). ‘Cause it just works like that. This semester would be the “let’s take the next level in all the class strings that I started (like linear algebra, writing, and acting). It’s also the “fuck anyone who gets in my way, I’m TAKING METAPHYSICS” semester.
Today’s song: Opus 36 by Dustin O’Halloran
Ugh, school. Here’s my schedule this semester:
9:30 – 11:00 M/W: Bayesian Inference
3:00 – 4:30 M/W: Statistical Computing (half course, starts in March)
9:30 – 11:00 T/H: Measurement
11:00 – 1:15 T/H: Regression
Today’s song: Fuzzy Blue Lights by Owl City
Alternate title: Claudia took too many goddamn classes and gave the U of I way too much money.
1. Biology 102: Biology and Society
2. CORE 116: The Sacred Journey
3. CORE 166: The Sacred Journey
4. English 101: Introduction to College Writing
5. English 102: College Writing and Rhetoric
6. English 175: Introduction to Literary Genres
7. English 208: Personal and Exploratory Writing
8. English 258: Literature of Western Civilization II
9. English 292: Creative Writing: Fiction
10. English 392: Intermediate Fiction Writing
11. Geography 100: Physical Geography
12. Geography 100L: Physical Geography Lab
13. History 111: Introduction to U.S. History I
14. History 112: Introduction to U.S. History II
15. Math 143: Pre-Calculus Algebra and Analytic Geometry
16. Math 160: Survey of Calculus
17. Math 330: Linear Algebra
18. Music 119: Marching Band
19. Music 121: Concert Band
20. Music 319: Marching Band
21. Music 319: Marching Band
22. Music 321: Concert Band
23. Music 321: Concert Band
24. Philosophy 103: Ethics
25. Philosophy 202: Introduction to Symbolic Logic
26. Philosophy 240: Belief and Reality
27. Philosophy 307: Buddhism
28. Philosophy 320: History of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy
29. Philosophy 321: History of Modern Philosophy
30. Philosophy 351: Philosophy of Science
31. Philosophy 442: Philosophy of Mind
32. Philosophy 447: Theory of Knowledge
33. Philosophy 490: Senior Seminar
34. Psychology 101: Introduction to Psychology
35. Psychology 218: Intro to Research in the Behavioral Sciences
36. Psychology 305: Developmental Psychology
37. Psychology 310: Psychology of Personality
38. Psychology 311: Abnormal Psychology
39. Psychology 320: Social Psychology
40. Psychology 330: Human Sexuality
41. Psychology 390: Psychology of Learning
42. Psychology 421: Cognitive Development
43. Psychology 430: Tests and Measurements
44. Psychology 456: Psychology of Emotion
45. Psychology 499: Directed Study – Industrial/Organizational Research
46. Psychology 499: Directed Study – Industrial/Organizational Research
47. Psychology 499: Directed Study – Industrial/Organizational Research
48. Psychology 499: Directed Study – Stumbling on Happiness
49. Statistics 251: Statistical Methods
50. Statistics 401: Statistical Analysis
51. Statistics 422: Sample Survey Methods
52. Statistics 514: Nonparametric Statistics
53. Statistics 519: Multivariate Analysis
54. Theatre 100: Freshman Theatre Seminar
55. Theatre 105: Basics of Performance
WOOHOO NO BLOG POST IS COMPLETE WITHOUT A GRAPH LOL
Guess who’s now enrolled in Intermediate Fiction?!
19 was unacceptable. Had to push it up to 22. ‘Cause I’m me and I’m weird.
Also, YAY FICTION CLASS! Tuesdays are going to be awesome, ‘cause I have concert band at 12:30 and then Fiction at 2, and then I’m done.
Best day ever.
SECOND DAY, HOLY CRAP!
Music 321: Concert Band – always a good class to have.
Philosophy 490: Senior seminar – the senior seminar in philosophy…a class I would have NEVER expected I would be taking if you’d ask me about it my first semester. Meets only once a week, but for 3 ½ hours.
Oh yeah, and more research is happening this semester.
ALSO: 19 credits is a frighteningly low amount for me.
Philosophy 240: Belief and Reality – Dr. O’Rourke!
Philosophy 447: Theory of Knowledge – Dr. O’Rourke bonus hour! I adore this man.
Math 330: Linear Algebra – this class will destroy my soul.
Statistics 519: Multivariate Analysis – YAY STATISTICS!!!!!
That is all.
WOOOOO SPRING SCHEDULE!
So I guess I can sign up for practically anything I want.
Finally, some choice.
I think I shall take a crap ton of philosophy and statistics. And…perhaps…the dreaded Linear Algebra.
Schedule to come in a few days.
Classes, day two, review!
Philosophy of Science: God, 8 in the morning…this looks like it may be a challenge.
Philosophy of Mind: IDENTITY. CONSCIOUSNESS. FREE WILL/DETERMINISM. DR. O’ROURKE. YES.
Ethics: Meh, I don’t think this will be too bad. It’s kind of weird taking a 101 class my senior semester, though.
Alrighty people, classes, day one, review!
Marching Band: Nothing new here. Same old badassery.
Nonparametric Statistics: Um…not sure if this is going to be easy or difficult. We talked about probability density functions today, and I think that’s something I’m going to have to know a little bit more about. But other than that, we’ll see…
Cognitive Development: So there are only seven of us in this class…the tests are five open-ended questions…there is one paper…and this is a 400-level class. Yeah.
And I have to start Psychology of Learning at some point, too, but that’s later. I’m lazy.
Do you see anything wrong with this?
Answer: the axes!!!! They’re WRONG! If “girls” is the x-axis and “cups” is the y-axis, they should be reversed on the graph.
Sorry, but I’ve never seen a mistake in xkcd before.
Two things really good happened today:
1. Work’s over. For me, at least. I want a few days off before the next semester kicks into gear.
2. Buddhism’s done with and I got an A in it. That’s always a good thing.
Okay, I’m done for now. Long day.
Haha, hooray for more school. Abnormal Psychology looks fun and interesting. Linear Algebra, on the other hand, does not.
I get it, I just don’t like it. And I’d forgotten how much I loathed the setup of math books.
Holy crap, today was the most stressful day of the entire semester. Let me tell you why.
So remember that stats test I took last Wednesday? We got that back today. What was the number on the top?
You can imagine the flip out that ensued. It was all over. Goodbye GPA, goodbye Summa cum Laude, goodbye grad school.
In the midst of this panic, I realize two things. One, he’s going over the test, and then two, my answers on the first page that were marked wrong (all of them were) matched the correct answers he was giving us. I took this up with him after class and long story short, I didn’t get a 65, I got an 80. Yes, that does make me very, very happy, but DEAR GOD I ALMOST LOST IT in class when I saw that 65. If you ever wanted to see the visual display that would accompany someone’s dreams getting crushed, you probably should’ve seen my face when I got that test back. Plus, an 80 still sucks; I’ve given myself a small 15-point window of error for the remaining 150 points in the class. Can I pull it off?
That’s a good question. I’m certainly going to do my best. There’s no way in hell I’m letting a stats class ruin my 4.0.
Second stressor of the day: I get back to my dorm at about 4:30 after research and I chill out for a few minutes, waiting for registration at 7, and am just about to fall asleep in my chair when it dawns on me that I still haven’t turned in my petition to take 22 credits—my limit is set at 20. The registrar’s office closes at 5. I look at the clock. 4:55. I don’t think I’ve ever moved faster in my life. I got there in time (barely) and got that taken care of, so that was good.
Third stressor of the day: with my credit limit taken care of (at least for now, I still have to get that other petition in), nothing was left to do but wait for registration at 7. By 6:58 I had all my little CRN numbers typed in so that I could just hit “submit” at 7 and it would all go through. No problem, right?
All my classes go through…all except one: my stats class. My graduate-level stats class. The one I was assured by my advisor that I would get into (“there are no undergraduate restrictions to get into graduate classes!”). Yeah, apparently there are. So that’s just one more thing I’m going to have to straighten out sometime soon. I’m not posting my schedule tonight ’cause it’s not complete; I’ll do it once stats works out (that is, if it does at all).
So how did I relieve all this stress? I talked to Sean and I made an album cover. Observe:
Pitchfork and little horns were added by yours truly. I can’t decide if I like this one or not.
Guys, I think hell just froze over…the U of I is actually doing something conducive to the implementation of my plans!
Yes, that’s right! I went up to the philosophy department today to speak to an advisor (who will also be my teacher for Metaphysics next semester) about my plan for fall/spring.
Have I told you this plan? Probably, but I’ll explain it again: my plan is to graduate in the fall with my psych degree (and philosophy minor and statistics emphasis), right? Well, since grad school programs (assuming I get into one) don’t start until the fall, so I’ve essentially a semester where I won’t be doing anything. So I figured, why not do something productive and get a philosophy degree then, since with the minor I’ll only need 4 classes anyway. Well, the thing is, a philosophy major also requires 20 additional credits from another “approved field.” My question was this: could I use 20 of the credits I earned getting my psychology degree to fulfill this requirement (keep in mind I’d have already graduated with these)?
So today I get in there and explain my situation, and he said something to the effect of, “as long as the Registrar doesn’t have any restrictions, it will work fine.”
I checked with the Registrar. They don’t have any restrictions.
Translation: yes, I CAN graduate in the fall, and I CAN come back and get my second B.S. in the spring.
How incredibly awesome is that?
It nearly almost trumps my incredible worrying over the results of my two tests today.
So remember how I was complaining about the fact that Belief and Reality, a class I’d have to take to get a philosophy degree, appears to be offered every four years or so, thus significantly reducing my odds of getting my degree next spring due to the fact that it’s being offered now?
Well, I went in to talk to my logic teacher today (damn you, biconditionals!) and we got to talking about my plans. Turns out, he’s actually teaching that class in the spring, which means that I can totally get the philosophy degree!
YAY! Optimism regarding school has reemerged!
Plus, I think I’m finally getting a handle on these proofs.
Is the logic lightbulb on?
Is it flickering?
Now to read some Leibniz!
Alright, University of Idaho, you want to play rough, I’ll play rough.
Newly revised schedule for next fall:
As you can see, I revised quite a bit to fit Metaphysics in. I really, really want to take that class, obviously, because I eliminated what would have essentially been a “history of psychology” class, which is right up my alley. I figured I’ll just take either Psychology of Learning or Abnormal Psychology online during the fall (and the other one online during this coming summer, but I haven’t decided which to take when, obviously).
Take THAT, U of I, you piece of crap!
More U of I-related gripes:
~The one lower division class philosophy majors need, Belief and Reality 240, is apparently offered every four years. This is a problem, because it’s being offered right now, here in spring of ’08. That essentially means that there’s a .0001% chance that I’ll be able to get a degree in Philosophy next spring (yeah, I’ll have every class BUT that one, how much does THAT suck?!). And if this is the case, then I’m dumping Buddhism for Phil of Science (Buddhism fills the “Eastern” requirement for the major).
~Apparently, the U of I does have a class called Psychometrics (which I never saw because it’s listed under Counseling and School Psychology, or CASP, not PSYC). Unfortunately, it was last offered in 2005 and is not offered next fall (in fact, none of the CASP classes are offered next fall, which makes me worry that they dropped the whole thing).
I hate this place, I really do.
At least I’m almost freeeeeee!
So remember how I said the fall schedule was up and running?
Yeah, well, my schedule basically sucks for next fall.
Check it out:
Now if you know me and my schedule preferences at all, you know how I like to have all my classes in a big block, preferably as early in the day as possible. Yeah, I’m not getting that vibe from this schedule, are you?
~I start with freaking Marching Band at 12:30. I’m usually 90% done with classes by that time in the day.
~That 8:00 class on T/R is going to kill me, since I won’t be getting up until 11 AM or so on M/W/F and thus will stay up ’till god knows when.
~Cognitive psych that late in the day for that long? That won’t be fun at all, I’m telling you that right now.
~I want to take Metaphysics…I mean, I REALLY want to take Metaphysics, but it runs from 3:30-5:50 on Mondays, which would cancel out History and Systems of Psychology, which I also really want to take.
Plus, what I’ve got listed there is 22 credits (like I was only going to take the 17 I need to graduate, come on, guys). That’s not counting the one research class (3 credits) I probably should do and the one research class (3 credits) that I really hope I can do (Stat 499: Statistics in the Social Sciences. Doesn’t that sound like it was made for me?!).
So I’m looking at a 28-credit semester next fall. After I promised myself that 25 was my upper limit.
Bad, bad, bad Claudia.
Please note: this schedule will change, I’m almost sure of it.
GUESS WHAT, GUYS?
The fall ’08 schedule is up—FINALLY—at www.uidaho.edu/schedule.
Haha…by the time these blogs get uploaded on to here you’ll probably have seen me and I will have ranted about my schedule (good or bad, I haven’t really worked anything out yet), so this blog will be past news.
Introduction to Symbolic Logic: The first thing the professor says is, “welcome to symbolic logic. This class will be a lot like a math class.” Grr. I have a feeling this will be a difficult class. Why is it, in my experience, that 200-level classes are the toughest?
Concert Band: Hurrah! A class with people I know (even though you’re both in the back)! Torrey is switching me to clarinet, because all the other clarinetists from last year’s concert band died of the plague (I’m assuming) and I’m apparently the only one in the band who knows clarinet who is willing to switch instruments. Hurrah. Oh, well. I haven’t gotten to be loud and obnoxious on the clarinet in a concert band setting since junior year of high school.
History of Modern Philosophy: I love Joseph Cannon! I’m excited greatly for this class. The only downside is the fact that we’re only going up to Kant. But it’s all good.
Tonight consisted of: homework, dinking around on eBay for hours on end, working on my MFAW Flash (that’s “Millard Fillmore Appreciation Week, by the way), and making and subsequently drinking Nesquik chocolate milk. Yum.
Holy crap, new semester! Here we go with my obligatory rundown of today’s classes:
Human Sexuality: oh man, is this gonna be a fun class. We get in there and he’s all “bring porno to class, we’ll watch it!” What a wonderful way to begin the semester and every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday until May. The downside, though, is that our grades ride on only 100 points from two tests. Scary.
Statistical Analysis: I don’t think this is going to be the nightmare I thought it would be. However, I got my first droning professor of my college career. That’s going to be fun at 9:30 in the morning. But oh well—the tests are open book and open note!
Sample Survey Methods: I don’t think this one’ll be too bad, either. We’ll see.
Developmental Psychology: Hooray! I like Welch. I naturally study and absorb the same material she tests over, so it’s good.
Psychology of Emotion: Hooray! I have this class with Sean! And Welch teaches it, so it’s good. Plus, she says the tests are easy.
Well, it doesn’t sound like the tortuous 25 credits of death as I was expecting it would (at least today’s not—we’re not through tomorrow yet), so I’m pretty content.
Onward to Thursday!
Fillmore Fact: Did you know that it was under Millard Fillmore that California was admitted as a free state? Very cool, M. F., very cool.
Oh, and also…
First cartoon of the new semester. Concept thought up in Stats 401 (we weren’t talking about diagrams at all).
Heh. I’m awesome.
And just like that, the highlight of my undergraduate came to a close at abruptly 10:49 this morning. That’s right: I took my final in Tests and Measurements and walked out the door, never to see that wonderful class again.
It’s the saddest day of my life right now.