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Yesterday afternoon I was by my computer when I looked over on my Journalism papers and realised I am registered for all the wrong classes.

Imagine my surprise, after a whole week of going to classes and my already stressing out about the assignments. (I even wrote a blog about it.) Right after discovering this factor, I immediately went onto the school website in an effort to try and switch some things around. Ultimately, I found out that the last day to drop a class was in fact Thursday, and because I am already registered for 15 credits, I would need an override to add anything else.

In the midst of my haste, I managed to drop–or what I thought was drop–my Mass Media class only to look at my schedule and grades to see a nice big W. Although it “does not” affect my GPA, I was informed that a W in a class means you are still required to pay for it. Needless to say, I had a fit. I grabbed my things, put on my clothes, and headed straight to campus.

Not only was yesterday the last day to add a class, but it was also the last day to use the school’s Finaid opt-in program to buy books at the bookstore. After my 9 am class I went to the bookstore and got all the books I needed. (Two of them were not there so I had to special order them.) Would you like to take a guess which book was the only one I actually got? Mass Media. Therefore, in my frenzy, I also grabbed the book and the receipt just in case I had to take another trip to the bookstore to return it. (It also happened to be the last day to return books. Go figure.)

For such a big campus, I am slightly annoyed that we are only given four days to buy and return books and switch around our classes. I literally broke down in tears as I stood before the woman in the Registrar’s Office and tried to explain what happened. She had a bit more sympathy than the woman upstairs who kept telling me what I already knew. (“Swapping classes ended yesterday.”) I cried my way from Milican, where I was sent to reverse the Withdrawal, all the way back to Communications. By the time I returned to my Journalism advisor, my nose and eyes were red, and my schedule looked the same as it did when I first walked in–minus the W of course. (She was the most comforting, as she handed me a tissue and printed out my Degree Audit to show me that it is not that bad.)

This is what happened.

After I was admitted into the Journalism program the curriculum changed. It used to be that you had to choose a specialisation, for which I decided upon Editing. I attended a meeting last Spring where I was informed that since I have not started taking classes yet, I can still switch over to the new curriculum, which is just a general Journalism program–no specialising. At the meeting I was given three papers. The papers told me which classes to take for editing, which to take for news writing, and which to take for the new curriculum.

Shortly after said meeting, I registered for my classes. (Yes, I have been registered since April.) The basic idea behind our Journalism program is that you cannot take more than 40 credits of JOU-related classes. The standard requirements for both the new and old curriculum are 18 core credits. If you decide to specialise you also have to take 12 credits that are specific to that major and then you get to choose two 3-credit electives. Under the new one, aside from the 18-credit requirement, you get to choose the other 18-credits from a list that they give–which is basically a list of all the Journalism-related classes that are offered. (In essence it is the same amount of credits for either curriculum, but the new one gives you more freedom to choose the classes you want to take.)

Silly me, I thought the standard 18-credit requirements were the same no matter what. It just so happens that I was using the new curriculum guide to choose my classes, and three of the four JOU classes I am taking this semester are from the pool of electives. They do not count towards my editing core. Hence, I feel like I am wasting my semester. Granted, I would have had to choose two electives eventually anyway, but I only took these classes under the misconception that they were required. If I had the choice, I would much rather have taken a Magazine class or two.

The frustrating part is that four out of the six required classes for editing are also required for the new curriculum. This means, I only had a one in three chance of choosing an elective instead of a required class, which is exactly what I did–twice.


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