What was the hardest class you've ever taken in college?

MusicEnthusiast

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 23, 2010
432
47
Los Angeles
Mine is most likely Radiative Transfer. The atmosphere has so many constituents that dictate how radiation in the shortwave penetrates the atmosphere and is either scattered, absorbed, or emitted, and how it affects the atmosphere in the longwave infrared. These equations manipulate Planck's function and have a ton of integrals. So interesting! But our class is so in-depth that we have taken leaps of faith from derivations that go as far back as Maxwell's Equations and how molecules rotate and induce electric fields. I never would have thought that today's supercomputers have a difficult time plotting absorption lines to fit global climate models. Some of these models take years to run!

Well, enough of my little rant, I need to study for this class's final tomorrow morning. Share your tough college experiences!!!!
 

chrono1081

macrumors 604
Jan 26, 2008
7,637
1,734
Isla Nublar
Mine is nowhere close to the OPs, but mine would be discrete mathematics.

Most peoples experience in this vary widely since the subject itself varies widely but we had to deal with all kinds of things like patterns in sets, logic, pathfinding, gambling odds, etc etc.

What was tough was not only did we get some nasty questions, but we had to write programs to solve the questions because it was too much for a human to do.

Even worse is some problems had no answer so you could have programs running for days and it could mean its just taking that long to solve, or that theres no answer so it was like a giant guessing game.

I magically somehow passed with an A but its not a class I want to repeat!
 
Comment

Big-TDI-Guy

macrumors 68030
Jan 11, 2007
2,606
13
Hardest part of college I can recall, is fitting into those desks designed for 82 pound girls.

Subject matter is tough - but when shallow breathing just to remain concious - that will slightly compound things... :confused:
 
Comment

184550

Guest
May 8, 2008
1,980
2
Foreign languages. GMU requires undergrads to complete 9 credit hours of a foreign language.

I suck at science too.
 
Last edited:
Comment

Hylekmi

macrumors regular
Dec 8, 2010
101
0
Mine is nowhere close to the OPs, but mine would be discrete mathematics.

Most peoples experience in this vary widely since the subject itself varies widely but we had to deal with all kinds of things like patterns in sets, logic, pathfinding, gambling odds, etc etc.

What was tough was not only did we get some nasty questions, but we had to write programs to solve the questions because it was too much for a human to do.

Even worse is some problems had no answer so you could have programs running for days and it could mean its just taking that long to solve, or that theres no answer so it was like a giant guessing game.

I magically somehow passed with an A but its not a class I want to repeat!

Im currently studying my butt off for a Discrete Mathematics final... I got a 43 percent on the midterm and i need a 73 to pass.
 
Comment

shinobi-81

macrumors 6502
Apr 11, 2012
341
1
Mine is nowhere close to the OPs, but mine would be discrete mathematics.

Most peoples experience in this vary widely since the subject itself varies widely but we had to deal with all kinds of things like patterns in sets, logic, pathfinding, gambling odds, etc etc.

What was tough was not only did we get some nasty questions, but we had to write programs to solve the questions because it was too much for a human to do.

Even worse is some problems had no answer so you could have programs running for days and it could mean its just taking that long to solve, or that theres no answer so it was like a giant guessing game.

I magically somehow passed with an A but its not a class I want to repeat!
DM is the coolest math class I've ever taken, but I had a good teacher, though. We were never required to write programs either (algorithms in pseudo-code at most).
 
Comment

ravenvii

macrumors 604
Mar 17, 2004
7,584
490
Melenkurion Skyweir
Mine is nowhere close to the OPs, but mine would be discrete mathematics.

Most peoples experience in this vary widely since the subject itself varies widely but we had to deal with all kinds of things like patterns in sets, logic, pathfinding, gambling odds, etc etc.

What was tough was not only did we get some nasty questions, but we had to write programs to solve the questions because it was too much for a human to do.

Even worse is some problems had no answer so you could have programs running for days and it could mean its just taking that long to solve, or that theres no answer so it was like a giant guessing game.

I magically somehow passed with an A but its not a class I want to repeat!
That sounds seriously cool.

As for me, I went to law school. Pick one.

Though those classes was more psychologically hard rather than intellectually hard. For classes that was legitimately hard, I have many more classes to go, but I'll say Calculus.

I bet Calculus II will take its place soon enough, however. :)
 
Comment

fireshot91

macrumors 601
Jul 31, 2008
4,721
0
Northern VA
Foreign languages. GMU requires undergrads to complete 9 credit hours of a foreign language.

I suck at science too.
Oh hey, I live about 7-10 minutes away from there. :p.


Well, I'm entering into college this fall, but so far the hardest class I've had to take would be AP Chemistry. Somehow I passed with a solid B, and got a 4 on the exam.
 
Comment

shinobi-81

macrumors 6502
Apr 11, 2012
341
1
That sounds seriously cool.

As for me, I went to law school. Pick one.

Though those classes was more psychologically hard rather than intellectually hard. For classes that was legitimately hard, I have many more classes to go, but I'll say Calculus.

I bet Calculus II will take its place soon enough, however. :)
I dropped out of Law school after the second year of five (too much dull stuff to memorize drove me crazy), then I started on a B.Sc. instead, of which I have a year left. Calculus is probably one of the hardest ones to get a good grade in, no matter how much effort you put into it.
 
Comment

callmemike20

macrumors 6502a
Aug 21, 2007
855
3
USA
Biology 101. I got an A with little effort, but I hated the class. I don't think I learned anything until the day before the tests when I filled out the study guides.
 
Comment

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,239
4
for my BA Arthurian Literature was the hardest since it was kinda boring but the teacher was into it way more than anyone else. Math 101 was a bit too fast paced for me since math was never my strong suit but nothing else was a real struggle for me.
 
Comment

184550

Guest
May 8, 2008
1,980
2
Oh hey, I live about 7-10 minutes away from there. :p.


Well, I'm entering into college this fall, but so far the hardest class I've had to take would be AP Chemistry. Somehow I passed with a solid B, and got a 4 on the exam.
Fairfax/ DC area in general is awesome.
 
Comment

InvalidUserID

macrumors 6502a
Sep 7, 2008
563
0
Palo Alto, CA
Business statistics was rough partly because it was the first class Monday morning.

Some of the general ed courses that were required yet weren't interesting to me were tough to get through.
 
Comment

xboxer75010

macrumors 6502
Oct 6, 2006
260
4
Carrollton, TX
I'm an undergrad in Electrical Engineering and my 3 hardest classes so far have been:

Electronic Devices - Theory and application of solid state electronic devices. Physical principles of carrier motion in semiconductors leading to operating principles and circuit models for diodes, bipolar transistors, and field effect transistors. Introduction to integrated circuits.

Electronic Circuits - Large-signal and small-signal characteristics of diodes, BJT and MOSFET transistors. Analysis of circuits containing diodes. Analysis of the DC and small-signal characteristics of single-stage BJT and MOSFET amplifiers. Analysis of circuits with an operational amplifier as a black box. Introduction of high-frequency models of BJT and MOSFET transistors and methods to analyze amplifier frequency response.

Electromagnetic Engineering I - Introduction to the general characteristics of wave propagation. Physical interpretation of Maxwell's equations. Propagation of plane electromagnetic waves and energy. Transmission lines. Antenna fundamentals.

Glad I got them out of the way. :D
 
Comment

SuperCompu2

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2006
852
1
MA
Just finished my Electrical Engineering undergrad.

Hardest class I think was probably Electromagnetic Theory (involving triple integrals, partial differentiation, and exams requiring knowledge of roughly 100 equations). Advanced Digital Logic using VHDL/Verilog to program FPGAs was fairly difficult too.

Something I struggled with that others may have as well was Intro to Programming. My school uses Scheme to teach programming. I wanted to throw myself in front of a bus by mid-term.
 
Comment

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,415
124
Location Location Location
My 1st year Biology I and II subject. So many hot girls take biology, it was difficult to concentrate on anything but anatomy. :eek:



And then there was Quantum Mechanics. It's.......well.....it's quantum mechanics. *shrugs shoulders*
 
Comment
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.