The CS 1114 Starter Pack For ANYONE Who Wants To Take This Class At Virginia Tech
Start writing a post
Student Life

The CS 1114 Starter Pack For ANYONE Who Wants To Take This Class At Virginia Tech

Compiled by a multimedia journalism major.

The CS 1114 Starter Pack For ANYONE Who Wants To Take This Class At Virginia Tech

This spring semester, I decided to tackle my first ever computer science class. No, I have never had any prior coding experience. And yes, I was terrified before the first day of class. Actually, terrified is probably an understatement. In case you aren’t aware, CS 1114 is known as a weed-out class, and I was fairly certain that I would be susceptible to becoming one of those who would be weeded out. However, I am nearing the end of the semester, and can proudly say that I have managed to endure through 1114.

Through my experience in the class, obviously I learned a lot about coding, but I also learned how to tackle a class way outside of my comfort zone. So here are a few tips or advice I would like to have known before taking this class. Some of these may seem obvious, but when you are going into something completely new, any information is useful.

Go to every class.

No, attendance is not mandatory, but you really should go to every class. To be completely honest, this applies to every class, especially for a class that you may be more likely to struggle in. The professor will upload the PowerPoint slide online, however, they will generally spend half the lecture going over the information on the slides and the other half demonstrating what they just taught through scenarios. When it comes time to doing my labs and programming projects, I will usually go back to the in-class scenario to clarify any confusion I may have, so yeah, go to class.

Problems are going to appear a lot larger than they actually are.

Not going to lie, I will often time hit a wall and not be able to figure out what is wrong with my code. Like I will literally lose sleep over not being able to figure out why my code isn’t doing what I want it to do. I then will go ask a friend, TA or professor and they well literally add parentheses or a period somewhere and the code will magically compile and work. It is sometimes the most frustrating thing ever but make sure you don't over-stress about issues or problems you face. Because more often than not, you won’t be told that you have to rewrite your entire code. Actually, sometimes you may be told this unfortunate news.

Sign up for the CS mentor program.

The professor is going to mention this program towards the beginning of the semester and you are going to hear some people remark that they don’t need that program or laugh at it. Ignore them. I personally have a mentor and it has been very beneficial. It’s basically like having a free tutor, which, I don’t know about you, but sounds like a pretty decent program to me.

Computer science is a collaborative process.

It is important to realize that computer science is actually a pretty collaborative subject. I don’t know why, but for some reason, I previously thought that 1114 would be one of those classes where you don’t really know anyone in the class and just did your work independently. It wasn’t long before I realized I was completely wrong. Whether it’s reaching out to TAs, professors or even other students, everyone is willing to and anyone can offer help. So, don’t ever be afraid to ask for help because other people are probably facing that same, if not similar, issues as you.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments