I seem to be in a perpetual mindset of procrastination. I’m not sure if it was the extremely long summer or that I didn’t have anything due until week six of ten this semester. Schoolwork here tends to just be readings before the lecture or seminar. Busy work doesn’t exist and there are no quizzes or essays due every other week.
There are a ton of readings on the module description, which is their version of a syllabus, but there’s no test on the readings and it’s all just in class discussion on it. I am having a very hard time forcing myself to do the readings for my big lecture class. It’s a lecture-workshop which basically means that there’s lecture for an hour and then 30 minutes of the lecturer giving us something to talk about in partners and then discussing with the whole class.
As I’ve spent more time here, I’ve realized that the readings are not meant to test us. They’re meant to broaden our knowledge of the subject. I’ll have to reference these readings in my essays at the end of the semester, which is why I need to read them.
It’s hard though, I have no idea what I’m supposed to be taking notes on so I end up taking notes on the whole thing. I’m taking a film class and I am never sure exactly what I should be taking notes on during the film. What am I being tested on? The answer, is that I’m not being tested on anything. It’s more of an evaluation of how well I understand the ideas and can use them in a critique of the films.
It’s odd to be in this mindset but apparently, it’s normal. At the beginning of the term, I had so much free time, I wasn’t sure what to do with myself. Now, as usual, “later” has come. I’m leaving this week and it is one of the strangest things. I had so much time to do things but, as a procrastinator, I left things for the last minute. I started pushing things off (such as this blog post I started about five weeks ago) because I had so long to do them but it’s the final week and it still feels like I just got here but I’m also leaving very soon.
School here is a lot different than in the States but I think that they emphasize deeper understanding more than they do back home. Most of my essays are critical essays, whereas back home, they’re mostly research essays or ‘what do you think of this?’ type essays. It’s interesting but also kind of stressful, as finals always are. It’s also really strange that I won’t know how I did in the course until March or April. I still can’t believe that the term is almost over, I still have so much to do before I leave but I just have to get through finals week first.