Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: USAGE: University "subjects", "modules", "courses", etc.

From:Tristan McLeay <conlang@...>
Date:Tuesday, February 1, 2005, 15:41
On 2 Feb 2005, at 1.51 am, Thomas R. Wier wrote:

> On 1 Feb 2005, at 8.42 pm, Thomas R. Wier wrote: >>> Chris wrote: >>> >>>> A 10 credit module would be good though. :) >>> >>> What's a "10 credit module"? >> >> In Australian unis, and it seems in British ones as well, what I call >> subjects, Chris seems to call modules, and what Americans appear to >> call courses, have different weightings. When you have completed all >> the core subjects and have attained the right number of credit points, >> you have completed what Australians call your course and you can >> graduate and get your degree. [...] The subjects have different >> weightings, depending on the length of time and the amount of >> work involved. > > Ah, I don't think that's quite how many American universities > work. I say "many", because, of course, there is no one system > of education in America at any level. A "course", in American > parlance, is one class. This quarter, e.g., I'm taking a seminar > on infixation, a seminar on wh-movement, and the second quarter > of Nahuatl. These classes are called courses.
Each individual class? So for instance in 1st semester, 2nd year psychology (PSY21PYA), I had four one-hour lectures (in two two-hour blocks) and a nominally four-hour tute each week, according to your definition of 'course' would that then mean that for Psych, I was doing five (or three) courses *per week*? I must've misunderstood something.
> As for the rest, > there's wide variation, so I'll describe how my undergraduate > education at UT-Austin worked. To get one's bachelor's degree, > one generally refers to credit "hours". Usually, the number of > credits equals the actual number of hours one spends in the > classroom per week, and at UT this was also encoded into the > that course's (=class's) numeric designation. So, Ling 301 > is the introductory linguistics class, it meets three hours > per week, and after the end of one semester, if one passes > one has earned three credit hours. Gk 606Q (the advanced > Anc. Greek course I took) met six hours a week, and I received > six credit hours for it. And so on.
That really shouldn't work. Plenty of subjects have a lot of work you need to do outside of the class, but others don't.
> > How many credit-hours one needed to graduate depended on which > college one was in; I was in the College of Liberal Arts, in > which one needed at least 120 credit hours to graduate, though, > because I had three majors, some of whose requirements overlapped, > I ended up with 160-something credit-hours. Generally, each semester > one took at least four classes equalling twelve credit hours, though > some classes were more work-intensive and so would increase > one's overall load. (Certain financial aid packages and government > programs would require at least this many hours per semester.) > The program assumed that one would take at least 15 credit hours > each semester, to equal 30 credit hours per year or 120 in four > years. I got out of this in part because my HS was basically like > a college for one's last one or two years, and so I took eight > advanced placement tests and got 36 credit hours from it, > which meant my overall load could be lighter each semester, and > that I could have three majors instead of one or two. (Some > people really make a killing off of these advanced placement tests. > I have a good friend who tested out of 62 credit hours.) Anyways, > like your system, 10 is a light semester, 15 is normal, and 20 > is ridiculously heavy.
Well, except that a subject worth 10 cp was only a *subject*, not the cumulative load for the entire semester. I think a fulltime load at La Trobe is somewhere about 60 cp. Come to think of it, there is obviously a Uni-independent way of describing loadings in Australia, which the government uses to determine how much money they're going to loan us (which goes straight to the Uni to pay our tuition and has no interest charged, but is indexed). I think it's called the EFTSU, because Governments cannot work without stupid acronyms, which stands for 'equivalent full-time tertiary student loading'. How precisely that condenses to EFTSU I do not know, so don't quote me. An EFTSU of 1.000 represents a year's worth of full-time study. I'm doing a double degree in four years (i.e. one year more than a single degree normally takes, sans honors) so my EFTSUs have normally been above 1 and I'm being driven mad. It's not a feature of the common speech, though, and only is ever thought about when we get our HECS statements (HECS being the name of the scheme under which the money is lent---or at least it used to be, till the Government renamed it HECS-HELP, where HELP is even an acronym, but god knows what it stands for). The common way of talking about is either in contact hours (which range from around 10 a semester for goddamn arts students to 24 for people like me), or by the number of subjects you're doing, which is usually four.
> (Though a classmate of mine from HS who > was trying to get four majors [Physics, Astrophysics, Russian > linguistics, Russian literature] was taking 22 credit-hours some > semesters, and got like two hours of sleep per night.) > > At private universities like the U. of Chicago, things (can) work > entirely differently: here they're on a quarter system, they > don't have majors but "concentrations", undergraduates have > much more uniform requirements for graduation, different language > requirements, no state-specific requirements (at UT, before > they would accept my US government AP test, I needed to take > another "Texas-element" test on Texas government and history), > many more students are in the dual-degree bachelor's+masters > program, etc.
A 'double degree' in Oz normally refers to two bachelor's at once e.g. I'm doing a Bachelor of Computer Science/Bachelor of Cognitive Science double degree, mostly, I'm told, because no-one knows what Bachelor of Science (Cognitive) means, nor that it involves any computer study. But this dual-degree of yours, it means you go straight from bachelor to master in one go? Or even, you do undergrad and postgrad stuff at the same time?
> Oh, on a different note: as for "chook", I will never cease to > be mystified and amazed at Australian dialectology. :)
Oh please do cease, I'm sure I've exaggerated Australian dialectology way beyond its real nature. It's called patrotism-or-something. Not just patriotism, because it's got nothing to do with the State or anything... -- Tristan.


Mark J. Reed <markjreed@...>