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09/04/2019

Should I Drop Out of this course?

QUESTION
Should I Drop Out of this course?
I attend a community college and I am getting ready to transfer to major in a community college.

Right now I am taking pre-algebra and a CSS course. I do not need the CSS course but I am taking it to broaden my skills.

The CSS class is particularly time consuming. I have a 5 year old child who I have to put in front of the television for 2 hours just to get the assignment finished.

Each week we have 66 pages to read, two quizzes, two sections of lecture notes and 10 hands on practices.

I feel as though I am spending all of time in this class and no time focusing on looking for internships and searching for summer writing jobs.

I harvestedd 90’s and 100’s in all of my assignments. But the class is a bit nerve wracking in time consuming.

What should I do? Should I withdraw?

This will be the second withdrawal this term. The first withdrawal shouldn’t have counted since I signed up for the class late and never started the actual course.

In addition to this I am basically taking composition 2 for my mother.

I receive financial aid.

ANSWER
Wow, that’s a pretty time consuming class for a community college, but then again, in university you are expected to read around 150 pages a week, diagnostic essays/reflection papers on each reading, and this is pretty much every single class.

If you want to know the real reason withdrawals are “looked badly” upon, it’s pretty simple.

When you decide a class is too much for you to handle, you can withdraw or stay in and try your hardest. Now, when you’ve reached the point where you are considering withdrawal with a W (not an F), you have realized early on that this class is too much for you. And it’s only going to get worse as midterms and finals approach. So, I have, and I have witnessed friends who have, stuck the course with a class they felt queasy about and wound up with a B-, C or worse. Naturally, if you are GPA-oriented, you’d want to retake these classes or take a couple extra classes to boost your GPA before you graduate. Or sometimes, the university will require you to get a minimum grade like a B- or C+ in the course before you can take the next level course. This all means the college is banking on you as a driven student resolving to take more classes or retake this class to boost your GPA. Which means, more money for the college. Remember, higher education is above all, a business.

Therefore, they warn students that a withdrawal is bad. Now, when considering grad school or university (if you are coming from a 2-year), sure, admissions will look at your transcript and may even inquire about your withdrawal grade. But it won’t bar you from admission. During an interview, all it takes is for you to either clarify to the admissions official or send a letter to them stating that you felt that at the time, this class was hindering your ability to focus on all of your classes, and you felt that you’d learn the material better at another time. Or if you don’t retake the course, you could very well say that you were interested in the course, but realized that it wasn’t what you had expected. This is especially true if its a class you aren’t required to take. I don’t even think they care about those classes. If you have good grades in your transcript, withdrawals really don’t matter. After all, we are all human and we all have times where we function better than others and we all have our own stress thresholds. It doesn’t reflect on us being effective learners or anything.

Getting into the next step (a four-year) isn’t as hard as you think it is. Sure, counselors in your school may make it seem like it’s the end of the world if you withdraw a class or get a couple C’s. Really, it’s not. If you want to get to the next step, you will. You can persuade with activities, your GPA, your essay, and an honest interview. Of course your school’s counselors will paint the image negatively. That’s what they are paid to do. The school doesn’t get money if students don’t take its classes.

Remember- money is money. So when the four-year college looks at your papers they see one thing. If you maintain decent grades, it means you will continue your tenure there and you are a customer that will likely stay there for the next two-three years and take many of their classes. They don’t care about a few bad grades. In the end, they want your money. And they don’t care if you are an overachieving empty shell with a solid 4.0 and ten activities, or if you are your average Joe (or Jane) with a 3.0. As long as you are relatively consistent and are willing to take your classes. In fact, I’d argue that while overachievers do make the college look good, it’s the average Joes who make the college more money.