I want a break from college

Hi. I’m currently pursuing my post grad (2 year course). My semester 2 is going to start soon. I’ve been trying to learn programming for a while now. Even though my degree is CS related, I feel like dropping it, to self-learn stuff. I’m unable to cope up with the vast curriculum of my university. I don’t grasp the contents of what’s being taught. The thing about focusing on all the different topics and learning it in 2 months and then moving on to the next semester to learn about something completely different is overwhelming. I’m the type of person who can’t adapt to situation fast. I’m an extremely slow-learner, and learning alot of different stuff like cloud computing, computer graphics, android programming, dbms and stuff all at once is making my head hurt. Even though I want to learn these, I want to do it at my own accords, at my own pace, step by step.
I want to tell my parents about wanting a break in the middle of the college, however they would never agree to it. And this is making me extremely frustrated and anxious about my dark future as I’m not even learning a single thing properly at the college. I feel like I’m getting dumb each passing day and like my head would burst open sometime soon. I seriously don’t want to be unprepared and hopeless. If I barely pass and get a degree this way, I think it won’t really be helpful for me.

HI @ash89 !

Are there extra study sessions that you can be apart of or extra tutoring sessions led by peers or TA’s?
Have you brought up this issue with your TA’s and do they have suggestions for additional materials or study time that can help you learn the material better?

I would try to look into those avenues to get extra help in this material.

That is one of the benefits of self study that I enjoyed when learning how to code.
But I don’t feel 100% comfortable telling you to take a break from college because there is obviously family expectations or maybe even cultural expectations around college here.

Try exploring peer led or possibly TA led study groups.
Or even try reaching out to classmates to start a study group because I am sure you are not the only one struggling with these courses.

Hope that helps!

I got the admission at a nominal college. There’s not much assistance and the teachers are kinda judgmental. I’m also an introvert, plus after this covid period, I’ve lost a lil bit of conversation skills I had. Everyone seems so into the stuff, that it feels like I’m the only one missing out on things. Atmosphere here feels so dull, and depressing. There aren’t even after class clubs that I can join at my current college. No one seems interested, and are minding their own business. I really feel the need to change my atmosphere. I feel stuck and tied down here. There’s is no acceptance, just shoving stuff down the throat. And the family expectation is the main factor around here in the middle class family in India, also the cultural expectation of not taking the gap year.

Hi,

Let me ask you a question: When you are a slow learner (wich is completly ok), and you are a person, wich needs his time to addapt to asituation or whatever, so than why are you trying to learn so much things appart from the stuff you have to learn in college for your degree? Wouldn´t be it better for your heat and you´re mind if you postpone these things and you concentrate only on college and in your free time, instead of learning how to program, you enjoy the time with your friends or do some sports to free xou mind from learning.

All the best,
Kai

Hi Kai, I’m not trying to learn things apart from my curriculum. The problem with me is I’m unable to follow all of these thing that I’ve to do in college at once. I might be able to if I do it one by one, but I’ve to learn all the different things in the deadline of 2-3 months span. I’m having a hard time keeping it all up at once. My bachelor / undergrad degree wasn’t tech related. And I don’t have much knowledge now. The sudden transition to a CS / Tech is hard to keep up, as I couldn’t prepare for what’s going to come beforehand.

Hi Kai, I’m not trying to learn things apart from my curriculum. The problem with me is I’m unable to follow all of these thing that I’ve to do in college at once. I might be able to if I do it one by one, but I’ve to learn all the different things in the deadline of 2-3 months span. I’m having a hard time keeping it all up at once. My bachelor / undergrad degree wasn’t tech related. And I don’t have much knowledge now. The sudden transition to a CS / Tech is hard to keep up, as I couldn’t prepare for what’s going to come beforehand.

Ahh ok now I understand exactly what you mean. So than I got another question for you. Is ist that you´re in general a Person, who needs his time in the process of learning something new or are you probably studying something, which maybe you thought it would be your thing, but in reality your strengths are somewhere else.
If it´s the second thing than I would personally consider to change the subject and if it´s the first thing first of all befor I can give you an opinion on that I have to know many times can you repeat a semester? Because if you would take a break, than tahat would mean that you would fail the semester, wouldn´t it?

All the best,
Kai

If I consider my strengths that would be writing, as it comes naturally to me. I’m a person whose process of learning is usually slow. Also, I can’t repeat a semester, unless I fail multiple times I guess. Even previously, when I had a backlog, I was eligible for the next semester, while still giving the exam for that backlog. I don’t have much idea about repeating semester, however I do think one’s gotta have multiple backlog each semester to repeat a year or semester.

I think this is a good reason to do a “refocus” of your schooling approach. If changing schools/degrees isn’t an option, then you’ll have to make the most of what you have available.

If possible, instead of taking a semester off, I’d see if you can “lessen the load”, and take less classes in the future. This will push you back on your graduation date, but like you said above, if you’re not absorbing the material there isn’t much good.

Tech can be like this. You can get your CS degree, and end up in the field and end up with even more things to learn. This is the nature of tech, and very much a part of its landscape. You’ll need to keep up with things changing over time, not at the same pace as you would when you start learning, but you will need to keep learning in some capacity over time.

However, it’s worth keeping in mind you don’t need to be an expert in most of this stuff, only aware of it. Because of that you should be able to set your priorities and focus on only a specific subsection of what you are expected to know.

Ultimately you wont need to know how to do cloud computing, computer graphics, android, web, and DBMS all at the same time. You could know about each of these and roughly what it requires to get involved in these.
I’d consider it more “knowing what you don’t know” rather than “knowing”. As 2-3 months isn’t enough time to make you an expert, only maybe enough to get going if you require to in the future.

That said, schools could seek you to know “more” in a small amount of time and test you on those subjects. This is where your schools/professors make the biggest difference. Depending on the “learning culture” knowing everything might be required for the test (!), even if the subject wont be important to you later. This is the same for all schools, and could be a big problem if a large portion of your classes expect you to “know the stuff” even if it isn’t actually important in the long run.

I’d suggest to focus on learning what you need for the classes and thats it. Cut out some classes if you can to allow you to focus more.

Ultimately you will have to learn to balance your time, and I’d consider that the main skill to focus on where-as learning all this “fluff” may or may not actually be important, but it is if you need to pass. Its true its not optimal, nor does it always align with what we want, but school is structured learning for better or worse.

Good luck, keep learning, keep building :+1:

If your strengths are writing, then why are you studying something with programming? Why not something like Journalism? Because that sounds to me like I thought: Yeah perhaps you are in general slow in learning, but perhaps you are also studying something, which isn’t really your strength. So my personally advices for you are:

  1. Change subject?
  2. Change College?
  3. Go to the doctor, and perhaps he diagnosis a learning disability on you? (Which you can perhaps use, for your college to get a better treatment or something.

And when you don’t want to do all these mentioned things, then I can only give you the advice to inform you about repeating semester.
I wish you good luck with your future decisions, and I’m sure you will do what is the best for you.

All the best,
Kai