Those "school was really easy for me" people

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Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby semicolon » Sun Mar 16, 2008 10:35 pm UTC

A lot of the time in discussions about school people will say "oh school was really easy for me, I barely put in any work and got all As... didn't do any of the homework, didn't study, etc." I've seen it a few times here. Nothing wrong with those people, but it's always kind of confused me.

I operate under the assumption that I'm reasonably intelligent. At least, about the same intelligence as the people who usually say that school was easy for them. Thing is, school isn't easy for me! It's not hard necessarily, but it's not like, incredibly easy. So this leads me to believe that one of these things is true:
1) I'm not as smart as I think I am (i.e., I'm a cocky bastard)
2) Those dorks are exaggerating
3) School is easy for me and I don't realize it
4) Those people did have an easier time than me, but not because of a difference of intelligence, but because of a difference of adeptness at studying or attitude or something
5) I care way too fucking much about this and should go do my Chemistry homework
6) My above-average courseload (8 classes instead of 6) and occasional difficult classes (AP European History, a few classes I am taking ahead of when I would usually take them) is the difference

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Master Gunner » Sun Mar 16, 2008 10:51 pm UTC

I take about the hardest courses that I can, and so long as I pay attention in class, without doing the vast majority of the homework, or studying my notes, I can usually pull around a 80% in most courses. I don't know why, it just is. Of course, all this really does is prevent me from failing, which is hard enough to do these days. If I were to actually work, I know I could pull a 95+ average, but I'm a lazy wanker, so my average is usually in the mid-eighties, which is considered merely "decent" by my family and the people I hang out with.
In the end, it's not that it's really any "easier", it's just that I tend to understand concepts much faster than most other people, so I do well on tests. If I want to have a 95+ average, I'd have to work just as much as anybody else who wants to get the same marks.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby The Sleeping Tyrant » Sun Mar 16, 2008 11:07 pm UTC

I think that perhaps it's a combination of 4 and 6. And maybe a little 5.
Of course, this is without knowing you or your intelligence level.

Taking myself as an example (because I am one of those "school was really easy for me people" minus a few classes where I actually did work), I pretty much just have to see something done once to reproduce it in my good subjects (math and sciences mainly). It just clicks. Not saying anything about how I apply the concepts or whatever, it's just I remember the how (and why, but that's beside the point too) after only seeing it once or twice. So, really, it could be a memory thing. I.e., some of these easy people have it easy because they just remember things easier.

On the other hand, classes like AP European History are pretty much classes you need to do the work for. History classes in general are like that. I took a Canadian history course last semester (I'm on a semestered system) and basically did more work in that class than I had for the previous four years of high school combined. So, it's probably at least partially the courses you're taking too.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby ICDB » Mon Mar 17, 2008 1:42 am UTC

I agree with the OP. In the "What is your GPA?" thread, there were people saying their cumulative high school average was >99%. Wha??

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Robin S » Mon Mar 17, 2008 2:03 am UTC

I didn't find school at all easy. In fact, the last few years of secondary school were without question they hardest I've had so far - not just academically, though certainly the academic challenge was much higher than earlier years, but organizationally. However, I found doing well in exams reasonably easy, because (at the level of secondary education, at least) it was easy to cram, which I am good at. Finding school easy and doing well in exams without much effort are two separate things.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Chainer » Mon Mar 17, 2008 2:45 am UTC

There's another option: maybe the "school was easy for me" people have a lower standard for what they consider to be a good grade than you. They might, for example, barely do any work, get lots of 80's, and consider that good, while you might be able to pull off the same--except for you, an 80 is a bad grade.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Campog » Mon Mar 17, 2008 3:04 am UTC

I think at least for myself it was a combination of lack of morals, an excellent ability to BS answers to questions I knew nothing about, and being very good at inferring answers to tests that made school generally easy to me. My highschool average was about 97% and I think it was mostly due to my excellent test taking abilities. You can either study for three hours for a hard exam and know the answers to 95% of the questions and not have a clue on the rest, or study for 30 mins and have a good general knowledge of the topic and be able to answer 80% of the test from memory and infer the answers to another 15% by picking up clues from other questions that may have extra information, or just knowing general characteristics of the topic and being able to pick the best answer. (This is more relevant in classes like History, as opposed to Math, where you really do need to know your stuff.)

All in all, it was mostly eloquent BSing that made school easy for me. It's a lot like a game that you have to learn how to play.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Robin S » Mon Mar 17, 2008 3:12 am UTC

The above strategy got me, to an extent, through the essay subjects but was very little use for Maths or Science subjects, especially in the later years of school.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby RockoTDF » Mon Mar 17, 2008 4:21 am UTC

semicolon wrote:A lot of the time in discussions about school people will say "oh school was really easy for me, I barely put in any work and got all As... didn't do any of the homework, didn't study, etc." I've seen it a few times here. Nothing wrong with those people, but it's always kind of confused me.

I operate under the assumption that I'm reasonably intelligent. At least, about the same intelligence as the people who usually say that school was easy for them. Thing is, school isn't easy for me! It's not hard necessarily, but it's not like, incredibly easy. So this leads me to believe that one of these things is true:
1) I'm not as smart as I think I am (i.e., I'm a cocky bastard)


You may have certain intellectual strengths which no test score can quantify.

2) Those dorks are exaggerating
3) School is easy for me and I don't realize it


Also quite possible, one of my roommates is #2 all the way but flunked something last semester.

4) Those people did have an easier time than me, but not because of a difference of intelligence, but because of a difference of adeptness at studying or attitude or something


This is probably the case. It was for me and it turned out to be ADD, but that is another topic. Being "good" at school and being intelligent aren't the same thing.

6) My above-average courseload (8 classes instead of 6) and occasional difficult classes (AP European History, a few classes I am taking ahead of when I would usually take them) is the difference


A lot of the time the difficulty of school is not the material, but the volume of material. It pays to look and see what other people are doing and why it is "easy" for them. I know people who take a regular courseload and are like "why do you moan about school so often?" but I take more classes than they do, I work in a lab and am on another project outside of that lab.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Azrael001 » Mon Mar 17, 2008 4:29 am UTC

I used to be one of those people. I found high school very easy. I got low 80's with no studying and only handing it things that would be marked. I did pay attention in class though. After a year out of school working I lost my "mad skillz" and now I have troubles. It is irritating.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby skeptical scientist » Mon Mar 17, 2008 5:07 am UTC

It's a combination of a lot of things. I'm one of those "school was easy" people, and I would say that many of the things you mentioned are (at least partially true).

Here are some of the things involved:
  1. Good study habits. If you sit down to write a paper, and stare off into space, spin around in your chair, look at the wall, play a game of solitaire, and so on every time you write a paragraph, you're going to put in the same amount of effort as someone who writes the paper straight in one sitting, but you're going to take 3-5 times as long to do it. Being efficient about doing work makes it go a lot faster.
  2. If you are good in certain areas, homework for classes in those areas go a lot faster. If someone is really good at writing history papers, they probably won't write the paper that much faster, but the result will be a lot better. However, if you're good at math, you can frequently do math homework faster than other people by a significant factor. By taking a lot of classes in math and related ares (physics, economics, computer science) you can end up with a much smaller workload. I took a couple of econ classes along with some friends, spent vastly less time doing the homework and not studying for tests, and got significantly higher scores. (This is probably more significant in college then in high school, since in college you can significantly weight your schedule to these types of classes. By my junior/senior year, a typical semester was me taking 2-3 math classes, 1-2 physics classes, and 1-2 other quantitative classes.)
  3. If your classes are fun, they won't seem like work. In problem sets for some of my harder math classes, I would be figuring out and writing up proofs for several hours straight. However, if the problems are well chosen, this can be a fun process, and so it seems less like work and more like visiting the xkcd puzzles forum.
  4. Exaggeration. It's not hard to exaggerate how little you work, and some people find this fun.

I remember being endlessly amused at the end of junior year because my friend Beth's jaw literally dropped when she found out I'd been elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She barely ever saw me doing work, frequently saw me playing computer games, knew that I was always up for playing smash bros., and so assumed I was a complete slacker. She was right of course, but I also got damned good grades.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Savoy_Truffle » Mon Mar 17, 2008 6:21 am UTC

I don't know if this is going to sound pretentious or weird, but when I make comments like "school was easy for me" I only mean in the sense that studying (to the point of being anti-social), spending extra time meeting with teachers to understand subjects, and the like came kinda natural to me. It never occurred to me that I should want to hang out at the mall with my friends, because I had an assignment to complete (and given all the time I gave myself to do it, I would generally do well).
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby btilly » Mon Mar 17, 2008 6:38 am UTC

The point I'd like to add to this thread is that many people are closet studiers. They study fairly hard, but make it a point of pride to pretend that they don't. And from anecdotal evidence, the density of such people goes up in better schools.

As an excellent example I'd point to my mother. It is a point of pride for her that she was constantly seeing partying while she got good grades at Stanford. She admits that the only reason this was possible is that she hated football, so while everyone else was watching the football games, she was working like mad. But still a lot of people who knew her had no idea how much time she spent studying.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Zak » Mon Mar 17, 2008 7:05 am UTC

School is hard for me. I like to think that i'm pretty smart, but i have absolutly no good study habits or whatever. so yeah, go me.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby ++$_ » Mon Mar 17, 2008 8:56 am UTC

Point 1: In some schools, the teachers will bomb your grade if you don't do (and turn in) every single piece of homework. In others, not so much. This is why some people can get by without doing any homework, and others can't, even if they have the same intelligence/study habits.

Point 2: Some people are just faster than others. They do the homework assignment that takes you an hour in 15 minutes -- possibly because they write fast, possibly because tehy just happen to think faster. It doesn't make them smarter (although a lot of people will try to tell you that it does).

How I Did It: I did not study for a single test or exam throughout my high school career. I studied for a few quizzes, in the sense that I had to read the book in order to pass reading quizzes on it. But other than that I didn't study, period. Why? Because I made a point of learning things the first time around (when I saw them in class). Also, I had usually seen at least 50-75% of the material covered in class before. This happened for a number of reasons. First, I read books. (For example, I knew how calculus basically worked about 4 years before I took my first calculus class, because I had read a book on it. This made it really easy the second time around. Now, I couldn't really do calculus before the class, but I could take the derivatives of functions and I understood why those were the derivatives, for example.) Second, I remembered the times the teachers mentioned things that weren't related to the class, and I followed them up because it was interesting to me. Third, I read the textbooks for the classes while sitting on the toilet. Seriously. (No, not all in one sitting.)

After this, studying would have been redundant, so I never did it.

One other factor that I haven't mentioned is that I was very strategic about course selection. My high school gave students a lot of choice, especially in junior/senior years. During my senior year, I was taking English (required) and six math/sciencey courses, because that was what was fun. A lot of people wouldn't have the guts to do that, considering that college admissions is looming overhead, but I figured that it shows that I have strong interests. Anyway, my English homework took roughly 40% of my homework time (because I'm better at math and science stuff). If I had taken a "balanced" courseload, I would have had to work twice as hard. Going back a year to my junior year, I decided not to take AP US History when I learned that the class assigned "2 hours of homework a night." Now, realistically, it was more like 1 hour, but that's still more than I'm willing to do for one class unless I'm really learning something. It turns out that the regular US History class was infinitely better than AP US History anyway, because we got to have discussions in class, while they had to cram for the AP exam.

(Aside: I've never understood why teachers insist on teaching to the exam in AP classes. The best AP class I've taken was AP English; the most preparation we did was a single multiple-choice section from a past exam, a week before taking the actual exam. I got a 5 (out of 5), no problem. And I mean, no problem. The questions on the exam seemed so absolutely trivial after what we had done in class that I thought they had to be tricks. I also learned how to write in that class, by the way. But don't start thinking that AP English at my school was "easy". It was hell on earth. We had to write 250-word daily assignments, which really adds up. (Think of writing the equivalent of a normal essay every week or two, on top of the essays you have to write anyway.) And then we wrote papers that we thought were good and got Cs and Ds. That was how it was supposed to be. By the end of the class I could write an A- paper (no one ever got As). I was one of two or three who figured it out, and that was because I listened in class when the teacher explained how to write.)

*drinks a glass of water*

Another thing to consider is sports. If you do sports, you have just lost 50-60% of your life outside of school. That sucks. Quit the team and don't look back, unless you plan to play in college (or you want to join the Army, I suppose), because it's really not worth losing all your Thinking Time. I did After-School P.E., which was 45 minutes per day, and that only because my school required it.

Yet another point is that some classes are stupid. You have to figure out right away which ones, and change teachers if possible, or drop the class otherwise, if possible. Doing a stupid class is a waste of your time. (I had a stupid English class in my freshman year of high school. It was so bad that I hated going to school, even though all my other classes were great.) By "stupid class" I mean one that is Broken As Designed, so that you have no chance to learn anything from that class. (N.B.: If the class doesn't assign much homework, this is tolerable, because you get it on your transcript at virtually no cost. But usually, such classes assign LOTS of homework.) My brother's current math class is stupid. As evidence, I provide a sample problem from his homework last week (actually, I don't remember what the exact problem was, but it was something like this):
Factor:
x1/2yz-1 + x3/2z-3

How the fuck are you supposed to factor that? Factor out x1/2? Factor out z-1? Factor out z-3? Without any indication of why you would ever, in your whole life, even if you became an engineer or a mathematician, want to factor this equation (and I honestly have no idea why you would either), you are not going to learn anything from doing this problem. It's totally brain-dead. My brother receives 4-6 pages of problems like this per week. He used to like math, but not anymore (and I can't blame him). Don't take these classes. They make school hard AND boring at the same time. If you have to take them, recognize that you must find a way to compensate for the stupidity of the class somehow. Ask your parents for help learning the material (but for the love of God don't let that become a "help with homework" session, because then you're still doing the same brain-dead homework, but with help) if they might be willing to help you. Go to the library and read books. Take a summer course (but make sure it's not stupid itself). If you don't compensate, you will be hamstrung for a long time, assuming that the class is a prerequisite for something else. If you have a stupid freshman English class, for example, you will have the skills of an 8th grader entering your 10th grade English class, which is not going to work out well for you. If your Algebra II class is stupid, then you will have some trouble with precalculus and calculus, unless you find a non-stupid way to learn Algebra II.

tl;dr: There is no tl;dr. Read the damn post. If you don't learn how to read, you'll find school difficult. Learn to read. And if you already know, learn how to do it better. Unless (even if) you're an English professor, you can always improve your reading skills. At the very least, you can do it faster, which will make school easier. Don't try to take shortcuts like Cliff's Notes or Pink Monkey or reading the synopsis on Wikipedia. It will not work out for you.

OK? Good.

*dies*

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby cypherspace » Mon Mar 17, 2008 10:08 am UTC

I'm one of these people - I always seemed to get relatively good grades in school without actually doing any work. But on Facebook, my friends have voted me as #5 hardest worker - I haven't lost a vote yet. So either they think I'm doing more work than I really do, or I do more work than I think.

But it still seems to me that I am currently studying for a PhD without really having to work hard for it. I've never been one of those people that gets home, does their homework and then carries on with other stuff. I generally hand everything in late, get notes off other people, lie about what I've been doing during the week and so on. The only time that I can really point to when I worked hard for something was when I submitted my dissertation for my Masters degree. I was working 20 hours a week on top of studies during that year, but my lecture attendance was about 25% and the research project was mostly conducted at home while stoned as fuck and long periods spent doing nothing. When I had to submit, I took three weeks off work, and completed my dissertation and presentation in that time, but even then I had friends over all the time - they'd play on my Xbox while I was sitting at the computer working, but during those three weeks we smoked three ounces of weed. Even so, I completed my dissertation (15,000 words and 56 pages) a day before it was due. I think that was the first time I have ever completed a piece of work early - and I only just missed a first-class grade for it.

But how can I possibly think that I work hard when I know for a fact that the majority of my time is spent socialising or procrastinating? I've had bad grades in exams, and my degree wasn't from a first-class university, but nevertheless it was 6th in the country for physics in the year that I left, I have a 2:1 MPhys degree, and I'm currently working in a world-class magnetics research centre on a PhD, so all I can conclude is that I find academia pretty easy.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby evilbeanfiend » Mon Mar 17, 2008 11:10 am UTC

Robin S wrote:The above strategy got me, to an extent, through the essay subjects but was very little use for Maths or Science subjects, especially in the later years of school.


there is an equivalent for maths and science though, being able to quickly derive things from first principles means you (may) need to remember fewer formula. also DA helps a lot.

also being less risk adverse probably helps, most people i know who worked really hard probably didn't improve their grades very much by doing so, however if someone had somehow stopped them working that hard they would feel unprepared and uncomfortable.
Last edited by evilbeanfiend on Mon Mar 17, 2008 11:17 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Robin S » Mon Mar 17, 2008 11:13 am UTC

I did try deriving everything from more or less first principles in my mock exams, then compared my speed with once I'd memorized all the relevant formulae in my final exams (and at school, there weren't all that many anyway). The difference was significant.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby skeptical scientist » Mon Mar 17, 2008 3:59 pm UTC

Robin S wrote:I did try deriving everything from more or less first principles in my mock exams, then compared my speed with once I'd memorized all the relevant formulae in my final exams (and at school, there weren't all that many anyway). The difference was significant.

Perhaps, but I was never once short for time on any math or physics test deriving everything from scratch (which made my non-calc physics course extraordinarily easy, since if you can differentiate and integrate you only need about one formula for every ten the other students need). I used to love test days, because it meant that I could leave class half an hour early and browse the web or play games in the computer lab.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Robin S » Mon Mar 17, 2008 5:51 pm UTC

That doesn't work in public exams, where we were required to stay until the exam had finished. I generally made use of my time by checking and re-checking my answers until the time ran out. Occasionally I found I'd made (often rather silly) mistakes.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby btilly » Mon Mar 17, 2008 6:17 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:
Robin S wrote:I did try deriving everything from more or less first principles in my mock exams, then compared my speed with once I'd memorized all the relevant formulae in my final exams (and at school, there weren't all that many anyway). The difference was significant.

Perhaps, but I was never once short for time on any math or physics test deriving everything from scratch (which made my non-calc physics course extraordinarily easy, since if you can differentiate and integrate you only need about one formula for every ten the other students need). I used to love test days, because it meant that I could leave class half an hour early and browse the web or play games in the computer lab.

I'd usually find that there were 2 or 3 formulas or facts that I knew I would need that I didn't want to derive. Therefore I'd study them 5 minutes before the test, walk in, flip the test over, write them down, then do the test.

I have just once been short for time on a math test. It was a probability theory test. It was supposed to be 3 hours long. I was the first one out at just over 3 hours. The professor extended the test. I heard later that the next person left at 4.5 hours, and at 5 hours the professor collected everyone's tests. He then scaled everyone's grades up.

I didn't feel bad about having taken 3 hours. :wink:
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby skeptical scientist » Mon Mar 17, 2008 8:48 pm UTC

That's pretty funny. Someone is apparently very bad at writing tests that use the alloted time. You're supposed to test your students' knowledge, not how quickly they can apply it.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Flying Betty » Mon Mar 17, 2008 10:42 pm UTC

School was really easy for me. At least starting out. I do make it a point to turn in anything that's being graded, even if it's utterly half-assed. But I seem to have decent writing skills and an excellent short term memory, which is all you need to study for high school tests the period before and get As in everything. I didn't do quite as well as I should have, maybe 7th or 8th out of 130 instead of being a serious contender for salutatorian. (I firmly believe that the valedictorian would have done anything to keep the top spot)

College started off a bit rough until I realized that I actually needed to do the homework to get good grades. Then it wasn't a problem.

I had a bit of an identity crisis in grad school when I realized that I wasn't one of the smart ones anymore. Everyone there was brilliant, and most of them worked far harder than I did. Not having the background for a few of the courses didn't help me, of course, but I also think I put in less effort on my thesis than many other people and still came up with something that my adviser was willing to sign off on, and he wasn't going to let me get away with something too crappy. So I guess I am pretty good at school, and though I have a real person job now, I kind of miss academia and haven't completely ruled out the possibility of a PhD sometime in the future.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby The Ethos » Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:14 pm UTC

I may catch some flak for this, and there are a LOT of good theories flying around here. Some I agree with, some I don't.

I'm surprised that no one has said this one though:

Some people are just NOT GOOD at learning certain subjects, etc.

This is in NO way a critique of the OP, but I think it's worth noting that no matter what the teacher, some people just don't like, have a mental block to learn, and to some extent are not good at test-taking/studying/etc.

I would say that there are certain abilities that GREATLY increase the ease of school. If you are an excellent crammer, you can get through most of HS and some college with little difficulty. If you are blessed with an excellent recall ability, you can hear things once, and remember them, and going to class IS your studying.

Most people tend to gravitate in college towards classes they're good at or at least enjoy. If you aren't, you're doing it wrong. In my mind, Organic Chemistry is one of the first courses science students hit where they realize "My way of studying is NOT going to cut it here." And they fail! The genetics course at my undergrad was the same way.

I would say that I am blessed with the ability to quickly derive, rearrange equations, do back of the envelope calculations, etc. This is very good for the multiple choice tests that my life is comprised of. I can't keep a decent lab notebook to save my life. I almost failed Spanish in college because I 'just couldn't learn it'. Metaphysics...don't get me started. This isn't to say I'm not well read, capable of doing some of these things, but they are also things that I acknowledge I'm just not good at *shrugs* Metaphysics especially. Bullshit class.

It breaks my heart when I see a college student with their heart set on medicine, but they just SUCK at science. Tragically, science is a big part of the field, and especially the hoops you have to jump through. I'm not sure that any amount of teaching can change some things (well, I suppose you could LEARN the tricks and mental shortcuts, but...I don't know opinions?).

Anyways, what do people think of the idea that some people just are better then others at school? Again, OP. NO OFFENSE, I'm certain you're an excellent student...and by asking the question, you're ahead of most.

/As a side note, a lot of medical students invest a serious amount of time and energy into making it LOOK like med school is simple. Why they do this, I have no idea. It certainly doesn't make anything easier.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby apricity » Tue Mar 18, 2008 11:31 pm UTC

The Ethos wrote:Some people are just NOT GOOD at learning certain subjects, etc.

My sharing of this opinion is one reason why I can't ever allow myself to become a teacher. Every teaching class I've taken has denied this is true, so you don't give up on any students, but I agree with you. Different ways of teaching the subject help, but still. For instance, I'm terrible at history. I just have no mental timeline. Some teachers have taught it in ways that I've understood the events, but I still forget all dates right after I'm tested on them. It is a mental block, and one I've never been able to fix.
I would say that there are certain abilities that GREATLY increase the ease of school. If you are an excellent crammer, you can get through most of HS and some college with little difficulty. If you are blessed with an excellent recall ability, you can hear things once, and remember them, and going to class IS your studying.

I also agree with this. Again from my own experience, I'm really good at cramming and BSing papers and essay exams, which got me fairly easily through a competitive private school. In English and history, while my classmates spent a lot of time learning all of the details in-depth, I spent 20 minutes learning the most important overarching concepts and used those to frame every bit of my work. In math I learned the concept and ignored the homework unless I really didn't understand the concept. Science was hardest for me because it really is detail-oriented. Strangely though, I really am pretty good at science, I just never wanted to put the work in to learn it so I got terrible grades. Once I got to college and started doing classes because I liked them and not because they sounded like they'd get me into college, I started to like science a lot more, and I started to work harder at it.

In answer to the original topic then, I'm one of the "school was [fairly] easy" people, made harder by the fact that I had after-school sports almost every day and no motivation. But it was easy because I was good at figuring out teachers and what they wanted, so I could BS almost anything. Plus I tended to take easier classes that still looked good, like AP Environmental Science instead of AP Biology.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Sinta » Wed Mar 19, 2008 8:56 am UTC

School was easy for me during lower school / middle school. Mainly because I was taught how to answer questions. It is quite an important skill, especially for thinking up bs answers.

In high school, I moved to Switzerland, where they spoke German. I didn't. All my bs anwering went out the window. And finally, it became hard and I had to actually think. I am eternally grateful for this wake up call.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Glade » Fri Mar 21, 2008 2:17 am UTC

So far, school has been easy for me, but mostly due to the fact that I automatically do homework. I don't decide whether or not I'm going to do it, I just do. It's a basic truth for me that I do homework, and that's what keeps my grades up.

Unfortunately, I only do it in time to be turned in. I don't do it right away. In fact, I generally leave it until the last minute, which has been problematic on occasion.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Sungura » Sat Mar 22, 2008 10:54 pm UTC

I was homeschooled until 7th grade, and was ahead of the normal curriculum of the public schools. So, 7th and 8th grades were super easy. 9th grade some new things showed up, but still, all through high school was no biggie. There wasn't much material, and the only challenging class was AP chem with just the sheer amount of material we needed to learn.

I am really good with concepts, not so hot with exact calculations. Perhaps this is why I know what a derivative and integral are, I understand conceptually what we are looking for, I was even great at figuring out what to integrate in calc 2 and making the equations. But doing the problems, I'm not really good at. Probably why I'm much better at graph theory and things of that nature than calc. I LOVE proofs!

Biochem 1 my professor was very much into concepts. Exams would consist of questions such as design an experiment to test this or that. I was great at that. This semester, biochem 2 is very much memorization (glycolysis, tca cycle, ETC, etc) and while I know conceptually what is going on, the route memorization is what kills me. Even though I really enjoy science, I have to work hard at it. A lot doesn't come naturally, but I enjoy it so I work at it. I guess that makes the working at it not seem so bad/easier. I notice biochem 2 is mostly biology :( But classes like orgo 1 &2, I had a terrific professor and even though there is memorization, she taught it very conceptually, because all the reactions pretty much work the same way in basic concept sense. I remember in orgo 2 people STILL got mechanisms wrong all the time because they still didn't understand nucleophile attacks eletrophile.

To sum it up: concepts come naturally, memorization is terrible.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Trina » Sat Mar 22, 2008 11:33 pm UTC

++$_ wrote:tl;dr: There is no tl;dr. Read the damn post. If you don't learn how to read, you'll find school difficult. Learn to read. And if you already know, learn how to do it better. Unless (even if) you're an English professor, you can always improve your reading skills. At the very least, you can do it faster, which will make school easier. Don't try to take shortcuts like Cliff's Notes or Pink Monkey or reading the synopsis on Wikipedia. It will not work out for you.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby SneakyMongo » Sun Mar 23, 2008 12:00 am UTC

=So stuff happens when I was younger, I'm out of school because of some words said. Anyway, some testing is done, apparently I'm in the 99th percentile for number recall, verbal....talky, and other...thingies. Anyhow, this is quite shocking to the teachers, most who assumed I was just slow/cheater. I mean I was barely getting 50s since Middle School in all subjects (even easy things like Drama).
A little while of investigating and my parents report the primary reason is this. Teachers haven't been grading my reports. They assume I'd copied them off the internet, and so they simply marked it as not done.
Some of the teachers apparently just refused to grade them on the grounds that they shouldn't be forced to understand them.*

Now, in those days, I was lucky if I made it into school once a week, so the reports were the primary grading thing I was being judged on.

Sadly, you can't fix this. Teachers see what they expect to see, and anything different (like a weird kid with slurred speech being smart) is considered guilty of something.

I had to suck it up, and play cheerleader so to speak. Act cheerful, go to all my classes full of energy, engage in fun banter, comment on class-room activity with an oh-so-preppy attitude.
It sucks, it flies in the face of every seasame street theme ever, but like it or not, I'm now in the high 90s mark in English, Math and GG.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Durinthal » Sun Mar 23, 2008 6:55 pm UTC

Disclaimer: I only read the OP and skimmed the rest of the thread.
I don't think anyone else mentioned this, but there is the fact that some schools are simply more intense and difficult than others and this plays a huge part when determining how "easy" someone had it. A good example of this is shown between myself and my fiancée.

She went to a Blue Ribbon school on the east coast, where there are dozens of AP and honors courses and half the graduates go to Ivy League universities each year. I, on the other hand, went to an average school in rural Ohio where there was a single AP class, no honors courses of any kind, and it was a good year if even 10% of the seniors went to a private or liberal arts college.

I easily cruised through the four years at my school, barely making an effort and getting all As in the top classes. My fiancée struggled in the AP and honors classes at her school, managing Bs and Cs. I'm willing to bet that if we had switched which school we were in, I would have struggled and she wouldn't.

As it is, we ended up at the same college, where the study habits that she developed in high school helped her get As because the college courses weren't as difficult. I never had a challenge before, so I didn't know how to study or work well when first starting and I did poorly because the classes were much harder compared to my school.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Zak » Mon Mar 24, 2008 4:59 am UTC

Yeah, that.

My school has four classes a semester, and then next semester, four completely different classes. Means i have to learn everything in half the time.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby invisibleandpink » Mon Mar 24, 2008 5:16 am UTC

I go to school in Germany, so things may be a little different here. But I always found school pretty easy, too. The only subject I ever had to learn for because I found it hard to get good marks without learning is physics, and this is also what I'm going to study at university. That may sound funny, but it's also the most interesting subject. Maybe there's a correlation between those things.

And it doesn't depend on which school you go to, because you have got to learn the same stuff all over the country.

I know that I'm kind of gifted (of course I DON'T think I'm a genius or so, I just know that I'm lucky because I don't have to work as hard as other people to achieve the same results).

But I wouldn't say that school wasn't hard at all. It's not super-duper-easy for me because of a simple fact: I actually have to go there. I have to sit there during the lessons (and in 90% of the cases I feel like I don't learn anything there). And I have to do my homework and stuff. It's pure bureaucracy. And this is definitely not "very easy", psychologically. Not because there was so much to learn, but more or less because there's not enough to learn.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby The Anarthrous » Tue Mar 25, 2008 6:10 pm UTC

I know Gardner's "multiple intelligences" isn't that credible, but it's my best answer. Also, 4 + 5 + 6.

I'm sort of one of those people. I met someone who was like me and I said to myself, "Wow, what a dick," and now I don't ever tell people that I can by school easily. Ha. Also, being autistic helps a lot, but it opens up a new can of worms. For example, I write down everything the professors say during lectures. It doesn't help me remember things and I never look back at what I wrote, but it helps me concentrate on what the professors are saying rather than everything my senses could possibly detect. Plus, having a huge stack of notes at the end of the semester makes me feel cool.

The way I see it, I'm not paying thousands of dollars a year to slack off. I'm here for a reason, and that reason is learning. Those kids who don't study are either downright foolish or on some sort of free ride, neither of which warrant any sympathy from me.

In any case, they're not you, so don't worry about it. Just do what you gotta do. Emphasis on point 5.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby ICDB » Wed Mar 26, 2008 1:42 am UTC

... how do you write that fast?

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby 3tard » Wed Mar 26, 2008 2:45 am UTC

I am currently in highschool, and yes, it is too easy for me. I havent done an assignment for classes other than english (papers and stuff) for over a semester. I am a freshman, but with 10th grade honors latin and math (Latin III and AL2), but I am also taking precalc on the side and doing a lojban project with my latin teacher (hes a really smart guy, has a phd in philosophy and has an award named after him at a local college). Right now all of my classes are easy and boring, and lately I am feeling both bored and trapped at the same time (not having fun in school and not having much of a social life because of the extra things im doing to keep my mind stimulated). Next year I am taking three AP courses (AP physics, AP calculus, and AP Vergil).

So heres a question to the more experienced in life, how do I keep myself mentally stimulated without eating up my free time or disturbing class to get more in depth explanations, and is beefing up my workload with 3 intensive senior courses a good idea as a sophomore?

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby The Anarthrous » Wed Mar 26, 2008 5:43 am UTC

ICDB wrote:... how do you write that fast?

A +2 Mechanical Pencil of Speed. You can buy them at your local campus store, surely.
Also, I remember everything he says. I spend the times when he's off-topic or joking around to catch up. The lag builds up over class, but I usually get everything done before the next class comes in.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby skeptical scientist » Wed Mar 26, 2008 5:41 pm UTC

The Anarthrous wrote:
ICDB wrote:... how do you write that fast?

A +2 Mechanical Pencil of Speed. You can buy them at your local campus store, surely.

Yeah, but who has 50,000 gold pieces to spend on a mechanical pencil?

It's a lot easier in math classes, since you only need to write down everything the professor writes on the board. In other classes notes should be notes - i.e. write down important phrases, quotes mentioned in class, and enough to get a general sense of what is going on. This keeps you better focused than if you tried to write down everything that is said.

I do exactly the same thing - write lots of notes to help focus in class, but rarely look back at them. Sometimes I'll refer back in the middle of a class if there is a reference to something we did earlier, or right before class starts so I can remember what we were doing at the end of the previous class, but I'm not the kind of person who reads over their notes at home after class.
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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby snails » Thu Mar 27, 2008 3:31 am UTC

I can get by with minimum studying with math/science, but history and foreign language are probably as hard for me as for anybody else. The difference, I think, lies in the fact that a lot of math/science boils down to a few basic principles, while mastering history and language entails memorizing seemingly random bits of information. I don't think my memory is better than that of my peers; rather, I have a stronger ability to think logically.

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Re: Those "school was really easy for me" people

Postby Jorpho » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:37 am UTC

How I tire of people saying, "I could get a 95 average, but I don't wanna." There's a quote from William Hazlitt of which I am rather fond: "Those who have done nothing, fancy themselves capable of everything: while those who have exerted themselves to the utmost only feel the limitation of their powers."

I went quite nuts at times during my pre-university career (and quite a ways into my university career, for that matter). There is perhaps no better way to say it. I would panic over the details of an essay and repeatedly ask the teacher if I had gotten the point. If I got perfect on an assignment, I would go over all my answers again and ask the teacher to correct my grade if I discovered it was higher than it should have been. At one point I even started typing up my math notes, and this was back in the day when such a task involved drawing diagrams in DOS paint programs and then trying to persuade WordPerfect 5.1 to arrange them nicely on the page. Yes, I got good grades - damn good grades, in fact - and maybe it should have been easy for me, but I refused to take it easy.

And then stuff like French and Phys Ed would bring down my average. :P Sometimes I wonder if I would have been better off if I had taken it easier after all - when one feels the limitations of one's powers, it really stings. But at the time, the option never really entered into my head - there wasn't anything more important than my schoolwork, and I saw no reason why I shouldn't dedicate myself to it completely. (Though I suppose that isn't completely true; I had my share of "stupid" courses as well.)


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