Looking back on high school and middle school, I noticed that I've changed how much work I think I have to do through the years.
In elementary school, we all thought that two worksheets for homework was a lot to handle. Maybe even too much. We dreaded the thought of having work in more than two subjects at one time, and couldn't even mention the possibility of having an entire packet due the next day.
In middle school, it became normal to have homework in most or all of our subjects, and we started to miss the days of single worksheets. Essays were more common, and so were exams. We now had to spend a whole two or three hours on our work instead of the twenty to thirty minutes we were used to.
In high school, immediately we missed middle school. Now we always had homework in every class, often multiple pieces in a single class. There were two, three, and four page essays up the wazoo and we were spending what felt like endless hours on homework, though in reality was usually no more than five.
In college, there are stages to the workload:
Stage 1: There's more work than high school and you're spending long hours into the night in the library finishing essays and projects. Having two essays at once blows your mind because professors expect such a high standard to be met, something that high school didn't quite prepare you for.
Stage 2: You practically live in the library and academic buildings. Little to no social life exists because of how many projects, essays, and readings are constantly due.
Stage 3: You miss the days of five to seven page essays; now you have ten to twelve page research papers with nineteen sources. That are written in a foreign language. Theses are slowly killing you, but you push through because:
Stage 4: You've just handed in your senior thesis, and now you're done. You haven't had this much time since freshman year, or maybe even high school. You can't quite figure out what to do with yourself. Then you remember, you haven't applied to grad school yet.
Personally, I'm in Stage 1. Stages 3 and 4 seem to both hit during senior year, while Stages 1, 2, and 3 all play some part in sophomore and junior year. So, to all my upperclassmen friends, please don't let your workload kill you. And to all my friends in the grades below me, enjoy this time while you can. You'll wish for it back eventually. Finally, to anyone I know who has since graduated from college, any unconventional or amusing advice for surviving those times when it goes from nothing to kill-me-now in a day?