Questions tagged [coursework]

Queries related to completing coursework for college or graduate school.

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216 votes
9 answers
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Professor creates assignment making students advocate for a bill being presented to Congress. Is this legal?

I attend a public university in Kentucky (USA). My professor has assigned an advocacy assignment that requires students to write three letters of support for a certain House bill that will soon be ...
kbc's user avatar
  • 1,363
99 votes
12 answers
24k views

First year Math PhD student; My problem solving skill has been completely atrophied and continues to decline

I'm a first year PhD student in mathematics and I'm in a pretty bad spot. Over the last year or so of undergrad and first semester of grad school, I've completely atrophied my problem solving skill. ...
Atrophied_Skills's user avatar
93 votes
22 answers
39k views

What is the point of a lecture when you have a textbook?

I never really understood the point of having a course with lectures when the course has a textbook. Sometimes the subject is so high-level or specialized or so modern that the contents are changing ...
math_lover's user avatar
  • 1,211
89 votes
2 answers
23k views

What is the origin of the "underwater basket weaving" meme in Academia?

"Underwater basket weaving" is often used as a placeholder for "irrelevant, useless university course." (Despite the fact that it's an actual thing.) More generally, "Basket weaving" and related ...
ff524's user avatar
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80 votes
12 answers
28k views

How to avoid sleeping in lectures?

It's not that I cannot hold my attention - I find it a lot easier to put in sustained effort during research - literature surveys, practising derivations, and coding. I also find myself actively ...
Manoj Kumar's user avatar
74 votes
7 answers
13k views

Is it normal to have a hard time comprehending academic papers?

I am starting my PhD in statistics program next year, and I have some concerns. In my institution, there is a mandatory course that every PhD student has to take in lieu of taking one qualifying ...
HDC's user avatar
  • 971
70 votes
9 answers
21k views

Should I challenge my professor who thinks he's always right?

One of my professors has been in the IT development fields for over 40 years. He thinks he is up-to-date with all the latest research and technology. But I believe he's not. The problem is - he hates ...
user10815's user avatar
  • 525
69 votes
8 answers
29k views

As a course lecturer, should I excuse late assignment submissions if I wrote the assignment deadline slightly wrong?

I am the course lecturer of an undergraduate course. For a recent assignment, I had written the assignment deadline as 23 November 2018 (Saturday). Unfortunately, 23 November is actually a Friday, and ...
I Like to Code's user avatar
64 votes
6 answers
8k views

Can a professor force me to submit my incomplete paper to a journal?

I am taking a graduate class requiring that I submit a paper to a journal at the end of the semester. The professor sent out an email informing us that we can either hand off a copy of the paper in ...
kaye's user avatar
  • 609
63 votes
6 answers
8k views

How should I communicate that I do not hold the views expressed in a paper I wrote

I am writing a paper for a class that requires me to write from a perspective I disagree with. To an external observer it may not be clear that I am not allowed to disagree with the premise of the ...
thisischuck's user avatar
  • 1,084
60 votes
8 answers
25k views

I'm afraid of chemicals. How do I handle my required uni biology class?

I have a freshman requirement as a science student for at least 3 core science classes, and I picked physics as often as I could. However, I must choose either chem or bio as my third. I chose bio. ...
Greta's user avatar
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55 votes
11 answers
85k views

Should I hide the fact that I did a group assignment completely by myself?

Three students and I were assigned a small (~14 hours of work) group project. Because there was no effort on their side to meet and work, my e-mails regarding their progress remained unanswered and ...
problemofficer - n.f. Monica's user avatar
55 votes
9 answers
10k views

Is it ethical for a lecturer to require students to purchase an online learning kit where kit is used for course assessments?

I am taking a course in a may-not-be-top-but-still-decent university located in North America. The course lecturer forces us to pay for an online learning kit from Pearson by adopting all the graded ...
Sibbs Gambling's user avatar
54 votes
6 answers
13k views

Is it fair for a professor to grade us on the possession of past papers?

My English professor recently asked us to bring in all of our graded essays from the whole semester in order to fill out a 'rubric' of sorts which tallied the various types of mistakes we had made. ...
Equinox's user avatar
  • 514
50 votes
8 answers
11k views

Is it acceptable to extend deadlines for coursework delayed due to student activism?

This article from the Brown University Daily Herald describes a number of student activists who claim to have suffered due to excess levels of student activism. Some excerpts from the article are ...
March Ho's user avatar
  • 1,482
50 votes
9 answers
8k views

How not to come off as boasting or arrogant, if you are one of the few active students in a class?

tl;dr: How not to come off as boasting, arrogant, attention seeking, etc. if you are one of the few students participating in class? Some background: I am currently attending a Master's level course ...
mort's user avatar
  • 1,790
49 votes
16 answers
14k views

Why would a student go to a lecture at all if everything was in the book already? [duplicate]

Why would a student go to a lecture at all if everything was in the book already? The lectures make sense if and only if the lecturer tells more than in the book(s) and in more detail (or at least,...
Troway Jestman's user avatar
48 votes
11 answers
19k views

What can a student who is already studying hard do to improve low grades?

I have been studying hard for the past year and a half (it's my second year of Computer Science) while not getting remotely close to the desired results. I passed my first year with a 7.2 GPA (5 (...
gorska's user avatar
  • 481
46 votes
7 answers
12k views

How to handle someone propositioning me to collude/cheat with them on an assignment?

I am in my final year of undergraduate. Another student, call him John, sent me a message on Facebook saying basically: Can you send me the solutions to the assignment from unit X, that you took last ...
Frames Catherine White's user avatar
45 votes
8 answers
10k views

Strategies for facing an "impossible" required course for PhD

I'm enrolled in the last doctoral-level course required for my PhD, and the course material is very difficult, requires a tremendous amount of time, and yet has no relevance to my research. I'm a hard ...
ybakos's user avatar
  • 1,262
42 votes
6 answers
44k views

Is it appropriate to attend a class one is not registered for?

Is it appropriate for a student to attend a class s/he is not registered for? I am a CS student and I am almost done with my degree, but there are some very interesting electives that I will not get ...
dramzy's user avatar
  • 627
42 votes
6 answers
10k views

Professor only teaches what is already in textbook. Should I quit going to the lectures?

I've become quite upset with how lectures for my courses are conducted. Everyday, I attend lectures where the teacher simply writes definitions and theorems on the board straight from one of our ...
Paul Elfish's user avatar
41 votes
18 answers
10k views

How to deal with inactive students in undergraduate projects?

I am in the field of computer science, and I have noticed a trend among a group of students when dealing with undergraduate programming projects. The situation is that there are some students that ...
Layla's user avatar
  • 8,737
40 votes
11 answers
12k views

Professor using student paper as an example of what not to do in class?

So a professor used a grad student's paper (anonymously) as an example of what not to do or what she doesn't want to see in the papers. The student was blindsided as the student wasn't notified that ...
Aaron's user avatar
  • 371
40 votes
7 answers
16k views

A lecturer is hard to understand, what to do?

I have a lecturer at university that I find very hard to understand. My lectures are taught in English, but my lecturer is of East Asian origin, and English is not his first language. I find the ...
Todd Davies's user avatar
39 votes
6 answers
9k views

A team member of a coursework software development project didn't contribute in any way. Can I remove his name from the project?

I am the project manager of a small team of five undergraduate developers who have been working for months on a large system for our Senior Capstone project. Four members of the team, including myself,...
Christian Westbrook's user avatar
39 votes
5 answers
10k views

I am struggling due to insufficient background in a graduate course and feel like a moron. What do I do?

I just started an Astronomy PhD program, which due to COVID has been all-online so far. Research and my computational methods course have been going OK, but I'm being utterly destroyed by my Galactic ...
arnbobo's user avatar
  • 493
39 votes
7 answers
30k views

Is it considered plagiarism if I use my OWN answers twice

I am re-doing a module that I have failed, My first assignment have some questions that are identical to the ones I answered last year, would I be violating any laws or academic practices by copying ...
Matka's user avatar
  • 493
38 votes
7 answers
1k views

Setting exercises and assignments when everything is on the web

These days there is so much material on the web that it is difficult to set good exercises/assignments for students, because they often find the questions on the web simply by googling (or else ask at ...
Dave Clarke's user avatar
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37 votes
7 answers
8k views

Is it acceptable to ask for course notes ahead of time?

I am taking a course in Computer Science next semester (it is currently a vacation period for my university) and I would like to email my future lecturer and ask them for the set of course notes for ...
Perturbative's user avatar
37 votes
9 answers
14k views

Undergrad overwhelmed by a graduate math class [closed]

I'm an undergraduate studying math and I'm taking a graduate math class for the first time this semester. I've taken the undergraduate prerequisites, but it's still very challenging, which I was ...
st1's user avatar
  • 477
35 votes
8 answers
6k views

The challenge large language models (LLMs) pose to programming-based homework

I teach courses in which, as homework, students implement data analysis algorithms from scratch, apply them to real and simulated data, and then reflect on the results. As a student in such courses, I ...
Trisoloriansunscreen's user avatar
34 votes
5 answers
9k views

Can I request for a change of a musical piece assigned to me due to physical discomfort?

I wonder if this is going to sound silly, I'd rather vent this anonymously online first before taking any action in the real world... I'm doing a Bachelor's Degree in Creative Writing and part of our ...
PaisleyParkIsInYourHeart's user avatar
34 votes
6 answers
7k views

How to deal with a student found seeking an answer to a coursework question online?

I have just found that a student has posted one of their assignment questions on a forum and is seeking help in getting a solution. I have a good idea who the student is, but no definitive proof. How ...
Nicholas's user avatar
  • 9,438
33 votes
8 answers
16k views

What is the reason that once a student has passed a university course, the student cannot take the course again?

This question geared towards STEM but can definitely be expanded for courses in the arts as well. Imagine the following scenarios: A student has taken a course, but passed the course with barely a ...
Fraïssé's user avatar
  • 11.5k
33 votes
7 answers
12k views

Is it rude for me to ask professors for assignments in advance of the class starting?

I will be starting my first semester of an online graduate program in ~20 days. Because of my full-time position, I am expecting things to be quite chaotic over the next month or so and I have ...
Clarinetist's user avatar
  • 1,289
28 votes
8 answers
14k views

When can asking a question during lecture be offensive?

During my masters, I used to ask a lot of questions in class and during the lecture. Whenever I had a doubt I used to ask questions. It was my habit which my undergraduate teachers inculcated in me ...
Supriyo's user avatar
  • 991
28 votes
6 answers
6k views

How to deal with a lazy class?

Imagine that you want to conduct your undergraduate classroom in a more creative way and introduce practical projects as a part of the final grade. However, students are lazy to embrace extra ...
Googlebot's user avatar
  • 7,657
27 votes
5 answers
43k views

What does “auditing a course” mean?

I am visiting an American university for a year. In my invitation letter and further instructions, it is written that I can audit any course that I want (subject to the agreement of its professor). ...
user39001's user avatar
  • 317
26 votes
12 answers
6k views

Colleague erroneously got a grade that is too high

I know that for a certain project a colleague with whom I have worked on the project erroneously got a grade that is higher than he should have gotten (the administration made a mistake is my guess). ...
student1232's user avatar
25 votes
7 answers
19k views

Is specifying a minimum word count beneficial for academic writing?

As we all know, during our higher-education careers there have been many professors who have assigned academic papers that require a minimum word or page count in some shape or form. Personally, I ...
aug's user avatar
  • 353
25 votes
5 answers
2k views

Balancing coursework, research, and teaching

I'm a first-year graduate student, and I just joined a computational chemistry laboratory. I have three tasks now: pass all my courses, fulfill my TA duties, and start research. I'm finding that I'm ...
eykanal's user avatar
  • 48.4k
24 votes
8 answers
11k views

First-time teaching PhD students make course assignment way too demanding for a new lecture

I'm attending a graduate lecture at a university in Europe. Two lecturers, both PhD students, are giving their first lecture. One of the PhD students is senior and another just recently enrolled in ...
Koothrappali's user avatar
24 votes
3 answers
4k views

Should I delete my question on Stack Exchange to reduce my own plagiarism?

I created a new account and posted a question on Math Stack Exchange asking help for a specific part in an exercise from class. It was duly answered. That question went on to gain a lot of hits and ...
Ahmad Shumayal's user avatar
23 votes
6 answers
5k views

How to deal with students wanting the answer versus working through the process

I am currently teaching an undergraduate forensic photography course, but I'm having a difficult time this semester. Many of my students seem disengaged, and they expect me to simply give them the ...
user avatar
23 votes
4 answers
4k views

What to do when my course-mates are making up research results for a class paper?

My course-mates and I have a scientific paper to do for a class and, despite having had almost 3 months to do it, no one has done anything (or at least tried to do anything) on the research, and now ...
guilherme.oc97's user avatar
22 votes
4 answers
19k views

What is the difference between Ph. D programs with coursework and those without it?

I have been looking into PhD programs in the Engineering field, and I have found different types of programs, such as some with coursework, and others without any coursework. What is the practical ...
Dr. Snoopy's user avatar
  • 2,180
21 votes
10 answers
9k views

Can a professor refuse to introduce any textbook for a course?

In a technical course, our professor refused to introduce any textbook. He officially stated (included in the course syllabus) that all the course content will be discussed in the class, and cover all ...
noname's user avatar
  • 283
20 votes
5 answers
1k views

Is it rude to ask for accommodations due to a learning disability?

I have a learning disability where I can only learn through seeing (not seeing and hearing). As a result, I need to have headphones in class to block all sound. Should I just tell the professor this?
tommoejrio's user avatar
20 votes
6 answers
2k views

Should my advisor know if I am auditing unrelated courses?

Question : Should my advisor know if I am auditing unrelated courses? Motivation : I am a PhD student in Computer Science and at times, I wish to audit courses which are not at all related to my ...
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