Questions tagged [undergraduate]

On providing academic services (such as teaching, advising, and research mentorship) specifically to undergraduates. Questions about undergraduate-specific issues that could not apply to graduate or post-graduate academicians are off-topic here and will be closed and deleted. Questions about coursework, etiquette, and other academic issues that apply to both undergraduate and post-graduate students should not be tagged [undergraduate].

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26
votes
4answers
3k views

Distance learning: taken seriously?

I'm currently in the first year of a six year bachelor's degree aiming for astrophysics. The course is a home/distance learning setup run by the Open University. While I am enjoying it thoroughly, I ...
25
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6answers
3k views

Having the knowledge of a graduate student but not having the degree requirements for graduate school?

Let's say that you're a 27 year old autodidact who has gained enough knowledge in a particular field of the formal sciences - like mathematics, for instance - to be able to take the highest course ...
49
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5answers
4k views

Is it unethical to accept extra time on exams when I still do well?

I have ADHD (real, diagnosed ADHD, not just "I-say-I-have-ADHD-because-it's-trendy" ADHD). I have never taken the extended time exams that are offered for ADHD students, because I have never needed to,...
25
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2answers
8k views

Writing a letter of recommendation as a graduate student

I am a MA student who frequently works with undergraduates on projects. One student has asked me if I can write her a letter of recommendation for graduate school. Are there any risks to me submitting ...
19
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4answers
4k views

Graduate early with average GPA, or later with better GPA?

I've seen similar questions here, and I wish there was a narrower tag than the broad soft-question and career-development. I am currently a freshman/sophomore-to-be at a top ten math program in US. ...
27
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6answers
57k views

Attending graduate school at my undergraduate university

I've been told by numerous people that (1) my undergraduate university will be disinclined to bring me on as a graduate student, and that (2) it's a bad idea to attend grad school where you completed ...
7
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3answers
6k views

Which is preferable, to go to graduate school at same school as undergrad or to go to a lower-ranked school?

I've heard from people that generally, it's a bad idea to go to the same school as your undergrad to get your graduate education. However, in the situation that you get into only your undergrad ...
6
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1answer
1k views

How essential is your GPA for admissions to PhD programs to US universities in Theoretical Physics?

I am a Physics undergrad aspiring to pursue mathematical physics(string theory etc) as a future career. How much importance is given to your GPA by grad schools in the US or Europe for admitting ...
25
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6answers
8k views

How do project supervisors address the “freeloading” problem in group projects?

I am currently leading a three person team to tackle an undergrad engineering project that involves several parts. I am responsible for data analysis using sophisticated computer algorithms, another ...
10
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3answers
2k views

How should I start Undergraduate Research in Mathematics?

Dear Academic SE advisers, I am a college sophomore in US with double majors in mathematics and microbiology. My algorithmic biology research got me passionate about the number theory and analysis, ...
150
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14answers
22k views

Teaching a class likely meant to inflate the GPA of student athletes

Premise My department recently finalized the faculty teaching assignments for the Fall 2019 semester (starts at the end of August 2019). As these assignments were being discussed a few weeks ago, my ...
20
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4answers
4k views

What is the basic structure of American higher education?

When I go to university for four years and study, e.g., law or medicine, do I earn an undergraduate degree? And do I have to go to university for another two years or so to get a graduate degree? Also,...
35
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8answers
4k views

Undergraduate not doing homework (case method)

I've recently started teaching undergraduate students using the case method (management subjects). However, I'm finding that most of the students simply don't do the reading at home. Even though I (so ...
12
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3answers
2k views

I am a 2nd year undergraduate student. What should I do now to prepare for my PhD?

I am a 2nd year undergraduate student in Aerospace Engineering, in India. I am really willing to go into Academia as a researcher. I am specifically interested in Aerospace Controls. Some points to ...
51
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8answers
7k 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 ...
15
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5answers
15k views

PhD in Germany after Bachelors

Recently I have received an offer for PhD studentship in Biology from a lab in Germany. I have completed my Bachelors degree and I have solid 2 years of research experience with 3 peer reviewed ...
15
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3answers
2k views

How to obtain a fair recommendation letter from a professor who knows me via course, not research?

The normal case is that students should obtain a recommendation letter for graduate school from the professor under whom the student has performed research. Currently, I am taking a course conducted ...
10
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2answers
2k views

Attending conferences as a first-year undergrad

I'm a first-year undergraduate student in physics. Since starting my studies I've tried to get involved in research as much as possible. Recently, the team I work with encouraged me to submit an ...
1
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2answers
240 views

How to make sure one understands each and every detail while reading a textbook/research paper without leaving any gaps?

I am a physics Master's student. I have good grades, with CGPA above 9(/10)(However, all courses in my university are graded on a curve so the actual marks are significantly lower than 90%). This has ...
12
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4answers
3k views

Is it acceptable to ask how a professor would like to be addressed through email?

I am an undergraduate student working for a professor this summer. Up to this point, I have referred to the professor as Dr. LastName. I have met his research group; his graduate and PhD students ...
8
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6answers
2k views

Will a self-designed major lower my chance of acceptance for graduate school?

I am in the process of designing a major. However, I am worried that using a self-designed major can make an application look bad. As it stands, this potential major is about 70% computer science ...
16
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4answers
1k views

Cons of graduating quickly

I read this question Does rigor/thoroughness of undergraduate program matter (for graduate/PhD applications)? and became very worried when I saw everyone blasting the OP for contemplating graduating ...
15
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3answers
8k views

How normal is it to have published as an undergraduate?

I’m currently in the first semester of MSc of psychology in a university in Germany and we got a lecturer from a university abroad who wanted to know what we had published. To his surprise, none of us ...
5
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2answers
341 views

MOOC / video integration into classroom schedule

Please forgive the rambling intro... Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are all the rage when people write about teaching. So many articles have been written about MOOCs killing universities while ...
4
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3answers
13k views

Can I be admitted to a master's in the USA after a 3-year European bachelor's program?

I am an Indian citizen and I'm planning to go for my bachelors to Germany. Since schooling in Germany is 13 years in length, I'll study 1 year in India before going there. I wanted to ask that after ...
2
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1answer
7k views

How good is the International Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics? (http://www.ijpam.eu/) [duplicate]

I had recently submitted my paper to this journal on the advise of my guide and quite fortunately, I received an email a few days back saying that the paper had been accepted for publication. So ...
9
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4answers
976 views

Overlearn in undergraduate College - good or bad idea?

I have no choice but to take courses I've already learnt in college. So is it a good idea to overlearn? Would overlearning help me to get into graduate school? There are many ways for me to spend ...
6
votes
3answers
549 views

Is it weird to visit a scientific conference as an undergraduate student?

I'm an undergraduate (Bachelor's) student and I'm thinking about attending a conference which exactly matches the topic of a research project that I'm working on at the moment. I have never attended a ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

How to contact a prospective supervisor for undergraduate research at another university?

There are many helpful posts explaining how a hopeful graduate student should contact a potential supervisor (example 1, example 2). However, I cannot find any advice about how an undergraduate should ...
2
votes
1answer
485 views

Proof of proficiency in mathematics

Apologise if this question isn't relevant to this forum, I tried my best to look for similar questions but couldn't find one. I am a computer science major enrolled in a not-so-renowned university in ...
1
vote
1answer
237 views

How to get good recommendation when working under a phd student as an undergraduate

I am not sure whether this is normal. I worked under a PhD student last year and I don't think I had any contact with prof. After I finished my work last year, we arranged a meeting so I could ...
147
votes
12answers
41k views

Our teacher is encouraging us to use cracked software

I'm taking a course named Numerical and Computational Methods Based on Mathematica (Or in Chinese: "基于Mathematica的数值计算方法"), but Wolfram Mathematica is a bit expensive for me to afford. On the first ...
70
votes
13answers
25k views

Our instructor threw together freely available YouTube videos and Wikipedia articles instead of lectures. What should I do?

I'm currently attending university online (at a notable public institution, not a crappy school—I feel compelled to mention this because one typically expects quality from good institutions). ...
67
votes
13answers
6k views

Why do undergraduate admissions in the U.S take into account nonacademic criteria?

College admissions in the U.S. takes into account many factors that are rarely considered in other countries and seem unrelated to academics. For example, legacy status (children of alumni may be ...
75
votes
8answers
13k views

How to explain a bad grade to a delusional student?

I guess this comes up quite often in educational context. There is a student who attended a seminar where they were supposed to study an assigned research paper and deliver a presentation to the class....
34
votes
8answers
13k views

Does the International Math Olympiad help research mathematics?

I was reading a note of Hojoo Lee on inequality which is written for International Math Olympiad (IMO) participants. Although he writes that “target readers are challenging high schools students and ...
51
votes
16answers
11k 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,...
44
votes
12answers
2k views

Should I stay in school?

I am most of the way through my freshman year at Washington State University, pursuing a BS in Computer Science. Going away to school has been rough, and I have been pretty depressed for most of the ...
43
votes
18answers
14k views

Should students have access to past exams or an exam bank?

Something I never understood is how in so many undergrad classes North America, the students are allowed to have past exams that they are allowed to study over. It never made sense to me because it ...
43
votes
11answers
7k views

Should I answer students' questions immediately or teach them to ask better questions?

I'm teaching an online lab (to accompany an in-person course) to undergrads in their 3rd or 4th year of an engineering curriculum this semester. The aim of the lab is not to teach them any particular ...
65
votes
17answers
18k views

In case of in-lecture quizzes, is it unreasonable to fail students who are late or absent?

I am teaching a large undergraduate class this semester. One day a week (same day every week) we have a quiz. The syllabus doesn't specify at what moment of the class period the quiz will be given. It ...
34
votes
10answers
20k views

Does two lines of copied code constitute plagiarism?

I copied (and failed to cite) two lines of code from the OpenJDK source for an undergraduate Data Structures project. Yet, the code comparison shows an alarming amount (40%) of similarity. Here is the ...
33
votes
3answers
8k views

How do I tell my advisor about mental health problems?

I'm an undergraduate student (20f). I have 2 academic advisors - one in the Honors College & one in my department. I met with the Honors advisor recently to discuss study abroad and we somehow got ...
27
votes
4answers
8k views

How should I handle students who ask questions that are “beyond the scope of the course” as a TA

One of the most common replies I have gotten as a student in engineering is the phrase "what you are asking is beyond the scope of this course". But I always found it a bit funny coming from the prof ...
22
votes
4answers
8k views

How can an undergraduate be recognized for work done on a paper, with a fellow PhD student and a professor?

I am an undergraduate student, and recently I was introduced a PhD student in my university's math department. In a brief interaction with him, he mentioned that he was doing work in Differential ...
15
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3answers
5k views

Problem with undergraduate research supervisor, how to proceed?

Setting I am currently an undergraduate student in chemistry and I have recently started working on an undergraduate research project in a known laboratory in the US. I am very passionate about the ...
12
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5answers
387 views

How can anyone assess their own Phd application prior to actually applying to determine its weaknesses and figure out what to do next?

How can an undergraduate student self-assess his/her PhD application prior to actually applying for PhD programs? As prospective PhD students, we can generally compare ourselves to other students at ...
18
votes
1answer
2k views

How will this departmental restructuring plan affect students and faculty?

I am an undergraduate Computer Engineering student at the University of Florida. In response to recent budget cuts to higher education in Florida, my department (Computer and Information Sciences and ...
11
votes
6answers
751 views

How to evaluate undergrad CS programs when eventually aiming for PhD?

My daughter has a strong interest in theoretical computer science, and she has just been admitted to several different universities as a freshman. She is just a bright student, not a genius, with a ...
25
votes
2answers
5k views

How to pitch a research idea to a professor as an undergraduate?

I have an idea which I'd like to work on with a professor at my university. In my initial email would it be arrogant to ask if he's interested in working with me on this particular topic (he's ...