It is taking
OF MY BEING
to resist applying for an undergraduate degree here. Any undergraduate degree. Hell, throw ‘em all in a hat and let me pick one that way.
You know how normal people have these primal psychological/physical urges to do things like eat and sleep and make babies?
I have that for school.
What’s up with that, seriously?
So there are two main reasons why I should not be allowed to go anywhere on campus other than the math building.
- I’ll get lost.*
- I’ll want to get a degree in whatever random program I happen to witness.
Example: I wanted to hold a review session for my second midterm, so I had to get a room booked that was big enough to hold at most 120 students. Because of the fact that the time of day of this review was still when a lot of classes were going on, my regular room wouldn’t work and I had to get a room over in the engineering complex.
As I was walking to the room, I saw a whole bunch of engineering students working on various projects/gadgets/equations/etc. which all looked super intriguing and made me do the thing I do where I just pick up a major because why the hell not.
So yeah. Math building only.
*I’m not kidding. When I first moved up here and started going to school, it took me an hour to find the campus rec center because I knew you could get there without going outside but I still couldn’t find it and I was freaking out because I had no idea where anything was or how to get back to my building. I think there’s something wrong with me.
Alternate title: Claudia’s Bored
(Click to enlarge!)
(Source for list of disciplines/categories)
YES I KNOW it’s not exactly like the actual periodic table groupings, but I gave it my best shot. I tried to keep the general “this is how things are organized” patterns, but some of the disciplines just didn’t fit in anywhere else (anatomy, I’m looking at you). I didn’t keep the P-, S-, D-, F-blocks ‘cause they didn’t work out in terms of layout, but I kind of made my own blocks instead (take THAT, Mendeleev!). The groups, however, are still sorta there.
Group 1: Formal sciences, applied
Group 2: Formal sciences, more theory-based
Group 3: Physics
Group 4: Physics-related stuff
Group 5: More specific physics
Group 6: Physics and space-related stuff
Group 7: Chemistry and biology
Group 8: More specific biology
Group 9: Specific types of organism-based biology
Group 10: Earth-related stuff
Group 11: Climate-related stuff
Group 12: More earth (ground)-related stuff
Group 13: Applied sciences that don’t fit anywhere else
Group 14: Arts (and marketing and accounting)
Group 15: More arts
Group 16: More arts
Group 17: Written arts
Group 18: Humanities
As for the colors, they’re more related to the blocks I guess. And the periods generally go from most fundamental/basic/theoretical (at the top) to the more applied (near the bottom of the columns).
I love Red Bull.
Today’s song: Alejandro by Lady Gaga (another “why the hell didn’t I have this song yet?” day)
So I randomly found some article today that was talking about a college that was cutting their Philosophy department completely out of the school because Philosophy is, they figure, a completely worthless major.
I call bullshit.
I hated philosophy when I first started college and didn’t “get it.” But I’m pretty sure I still would have questioned a college cutting it entirely.
So, because you all know I love lists and love annoying you with my opinions, I present to you a list of seven skills that I have seen sharply defined by people taking philosophy classes or people who are philosophy majors.
Standing up and screaming your point does not take skill, it just takes powerful lungs (or fast fingers if you use sign language). Standing up and debating/defending your point with actual support does. Sometimes you think you support an issue when you’re really just unsure about where you stand; often, being forced to argue your point in class after class (after class after class…) makes you stop and think about some sort of cogent chain of support for your stance in your head before you stand up and start yelling stuff at the people around you.
You think philosophy classes involve sitting around discussing Kant? I remember Philosophy of Mind involving spring-up-out-of-your-chair-with-passion-and-a-logical-retort types of arguments. It was freaking great.
Written argument skills
Very different than verbal arguments. Not everyone can make a vehement and convincing argument as equally vehement and convincing on paper. Phil majors are pretty much required to. Why are you opposed to Machiavellian ethics? Are there similarities between Hume’s distinction between reason and sentiment and pragmatic environmentalism? Why is Leibniz the sexiest thing ever (a highly philosophical question)? You can make similarly strong points with the written word as you can with the spoken word, you just have to know how.
Writing skills in general
Proper essay format gets BEATEN INTO YOUR HEAD in philosophy classes as it does in intro English classes, though philosophy classes teach you how to use the generic outline to your benefit in ways English 101 never taught you.
Essential to arguments. Essential to pretty much everything else. Aside from all the other “logic,” Symbolic Logic particularly has been helpful in other classes, including the dreaded and most-feared Linear Algebra, Psychology of Learning, and Multivariate Analysis. I’m sure I haven’t seen the last of it.
A slightly different (and much less appreciated) history degree
Learning philosophy is like learning the history of the world, albeit through a slightly different lens. If you get a large enough range of philosophers, you’re able to group them into the time periods during which they were prominent. You can see the correlation between the major things that were going on during the time the philosopher was active and the things they wrote about. I remember Western history better ‘cause I know what all the white dudes in Europe were talking about at specific times. It’s strange, but it works.
An interesting way of merging disciplines
You’d be surprised how often philosophers’ discussions coincide with problems in other fields, particularly science. I’m surprised there’s such an overlap between philosophical discussions/theories and statistics. Probably not enough that would convince the formation of a joint philosophy/statistics degree (much to my chagrin), but quite a lot nonetheless.
An obscure sense of humor
The best of all possible benefits of being a philosophy major.
Remember how I said I was conflicted over majors a couple of weeks ago?
Yeah, that’s not happening anymore. Philosophy is freaking AMAZING, don’t get me wrong. But when I’m removed from the philosophy stimuli, I’m right back to the “Psychometrics is the way to go, totally” case.
Of course, I’ll probably be conflicted even more than I was last semester when Metaphysics starts up in the fall.
Remember that schedule for next fall I said that I had figured out? If you thought I wouldn’t be able to hold on to that schedule for the whole semester without changing it…
Well, you’d be right.
So here’s the thing: I don’t need to take Buddhism in the fall due to the fact that I’m taking it this summer in the late session (any jokes like “aren’t you going to drop it like you dropped Linear Algebra?” will not be a good idea), and I don’t really need to take Fiction, even though I really, really want to. So I’ve decided to be a good student and take a class that actually pertains to one of my majors (or minors…who knows, it’s all twisted at the moment). I’m dropping Fiction and replacing it with Philosophy of Science, which certainly sounds interesting, but is at 8:00-9:15 in the morning on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Oh, and I’m also going to try to persuade several people (Torrey, Dr. Craig, the CASP department, and the Psychometrics teacher) to let me audit Marching Band and take the Psychometrics class offered for five Tuesdays up in Coeur d’Alene. I’m so desperate to take that class.
Wouldn’t that be awesome? We could combine all the departments and pit all the CLASS students against all the College of Science students and the Law students against the College of Education students and whatnot. We could just have an all-out war on the Admin lawn. Of course, it’d probably be a big failure…
The law students would probably sue you if you tried to fight with them.
All the Ag students would be trying to fight but then get distracted. “Ooh look, a field!”
The Philosophy students would be going around shouting “LOGICAL FALLACY!” at everything anyone said.
The Food Science students would set up a little booth and shout, “I’ve got cookies!”
The Computer Science students would die from their first exposure to the sun in two years.
The Interior Design students would be throwing swatches.
The Grad students would just be running around screaming “OMG MY THESIS!!”
The Theatre students would freaking love it.
The JAMM students would be interviewing everyone.
The Chem students would be making bombs.
The Sociology students would refuse to participate due to their witnessing of mob mentality, and would spend the whole time getting tans.
Depending on the type of English student, they’d either be reading or correcting everyone’s grammar.
The Business students…ah, screw the business students.
…why the hell did I blog about this?
…what on earth was my original blog?
…damn these tangents.
Now I’m not one to cuss much, but goddamn FUCK I love my Tests and Measurements class!!
I know I’ve blogged about this like five times, but I’m so freaking excited about it! I have found my true calling in life. If people are meant to have a sole purpose, I’m 99.99999% sure mine is to be a psychometrician and to make my change in the world through that. It’s a glorious thing to know something with such certainty.
As willing as I am to work my butt off for every single class I have, I’m 500% more willing to work for Tests and Measurements.
More determined than ever. Watch the hell out.
Here’s the thing. I think I’ve discovered another very strong passion of mine—philosophy. I’ve never used to like philosophy; it was the one thing I wanted to stay away from. But thanks to my Literature of Western Civilization II class last semester, I’ve discovered the wonderful world of the ancient thinkers. And the addition of my glorious History of Ancient/Medieval Philosophy class this semester makes me consider more than I probably should be considering at this point switching out my minors for a major in philosophy (plus a few classes in the Greek language). But I won’t, because that would be impractical.
Maybe I’ll get a second Bachelor’s in philosophy while working for my Master’s and PhD at whatever grad school I happen to go to.
And I’ve decided that if for some strange reason my getting out of here in three years is not possible (no idea why that would be, considering I could get my requirements for my Bachelor’s done by next semester), I’m saying “screw it” and getting a triple major in Psychology, Philosophy, and Statistics.
That’s right, I’m either in here for a short while or in here for a very long while
I’m probably boring you now.
…I need help, don’t I?
UPDATE: there are weirdoes out there like me! And they’re on Facebook!
Once again, I am questioning what I should do in regards to my major(s). I want to get the hell out of the U of I (meaning I want to get my bachelor’s degree in psych) in at most four years (but preferably three), but I also don’t want to limit my choice of other majors/minors because of that. Originally, I was a Psychology/Theatre/Music major, then a Psychology/Theatre major, and now a Psychology/English (with an emphasis in writing) major. Now I’m wondering whether or not to drop the English major and, in its place, minor in (all at the same time):
1. Writing. It’s basically the same thing as English, only it’s a minor and takes less time.
2. History. Cause I’m already halfway to a minor, anyway.
3. Philosophy. You know how I’ve always hated philosophy? Well, yeah. I like it now.
4. Possibly geology. Cause it only takes three classes to get a minor.
Noooo clue what I’m gonna do. None.