7 Stages Of Going Through Midterms, As Told By An English Major

7 Stages Of Going Through Midterms, As Told By An English Major

It's crazy and it makes you feel like you can't do it but you know in your heart and mind that you love this life.

Let me just say, this round of midterms were crazy. I think I cried at least twice, just today. People think being an English major is a cop-out but I'm here to set the record straight. Shit is hard. I had four papers due, along with normal reading and class work. Seems easy, right? Each paper was vastly challenging and long. How is it people think I can talk about Chaucer for 5 pages and how he wrote super vaguely so you have minimal material to use. Middle English is not easy to write about. There are close readings, translating, and then trying to understand what the hell they are trying to say. Honestly, sometimes I think even they don't even know. Then I had an art paper that was supposed to be 7 pages long. That just speaks for itself. I had two other 5 page papers due and I felt like screaming. And the cherry on top? All due on the same day at the same time, given to you a week before it's due. I wish I had tests that I can fake study for because I know I'll pass. Papers you can't guess. You have to make sense and your English professors won't go easy on you. This is what it's like being an English major during midterms.

Stage 1: Shock and Denial.

The professor gives you the assignment and the paper length. You look at your friends in class and give each other the "look". You know you're screwed but you just move into denial. It won't be that hard. You have no idea what the topic means? Ah well, guess you'll figure it out the day before it's due. You know you shouldn't procrastinate this one but I mean, you always save the hardest for last right? RIGHT!?

Stage 2: Pain and Guilt.

This is the "oh shit" stage. It where you realize you fucked up in waiting to do the hardest one last. It where you cry, staring at the computer screen begging words to just appear. Please something happen! Minimum of 1800 words and you have 30? Yeah, cue the water works. It's just so hard. You're feeling bad for not doing it sooner and how you keep checking your phone or Facebook as a sort of life line. Someone save me. Like literally, please help. Bye, bye 3.9 GPA, it was nice knowing you. Totally waving the white flag.

Stage 3: Anger and Bargaining.

Why would your professor do this to you!? It's their fault for making this so difficult. Why couldn't they have assigned an easy paper for midterms. You had to assign a minimum of 2000 words? No, you didn't Professor 'I'm Trying To Kill You". Most of your professors are sadists. That's the anger talking, of course. You know they are only trying to challenge you to help you grow and be smarter but still. Then comes the bargaining. There are two different kinds. You probably do both, and there is plenty of shame. First is bargaining with your professor: asking for extensions, office hours meeting, or do you really have to do it? Can there be, like, a freebie? I'll help you garden or something just don't make me do this, please! Of course this all gets rejected but it never hurts to try.

The second type of bargaining is with yourself. I'll do one page and then watch ONE episode of Law and Order: SVU. One always turns into five and the next thing you know its 2 AM and your paper is due at 8 AM. You begin to pray now, even if you aren't religious.

Stage 4: Depression/Reflection.

This is where you realize that you messed up. You promise yourself you'll do better next semester but you know the same cycle will repeat. It's all a part of being an English major, hell, a college student. Maybe I'll get it right for my senior year, who knows? The paper is still empty and you begin to give up. You know this paper can't be good...or can it?

Stage 5: The Upward Turn.

Oh my god. The BEST idea just came to you. All of a sudden words are flying out and before you know it half the paper is done. The three quarters. You stall on the conclusion because be real, we all do. It's like this magical moment happened and Olivia Benson somehow gave you the best idea and your paper has taken a beautiful, elegant shape and you are just so close to being done!

Stage 6: Working Though To The End.

You're tired and hungry but you push through those feelings to complete your goal. You can do this. Your paper is almost done. You're doing the in text citations and works cited page. You realize how close you are to being done and just push. You grab your coffee/tea/soda and chug it down, hoping it'll give you one last burst of energy to make this a home run.

Stage 7: Acceptance and Sleep.

You finally did it. It's done, you're done, and you can finally go to sleep. You don't revise or read it over because you know you'll see mistakes and honestly you don't care. You just want to finally lay in bed and close your eyes but before you do that, you do one of the best things in a college students world: you close all the tabs and submit the paper.

You can see Spring Break on the horizon and it gives you hope. You tell yourself just one more year and then you are done.

This is the life of an English major everyday and the life of a college student at midterms. It's crazy and it makes you feel like you can't do it but you know in your heart and mind that you love this life. You wouldn't want it any other way because you know without all this you can't reach your dreams and that's what pushes you though it in the end; your future.

Cover Image Credit: CSUStan

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7 Truths About Being A Science Major


Whether your major is Human Bio, Chemistry, Neuroscience or any other that deals with a lot of numbers, theories, experiments and impossibly memorizing facts, you know the pressures of pursuing a career in this field. So without further ado, here are seven truths about being a science major:

1. There is no “syllabus week.”

Coming back to college in the fall is one of the best times of the year. Welcome week has become most students' favorite on-campus holiday. But then you have syllabus week: another widely celebrated week of no responsibilities… Unless you’re a science major that is. While your other friends get to enjoy this week of getting to know their professors and class expectations, you get to learn about IUPAC nomenclature of alkanes on the first day of organic chem.

2. Your heart breaks every time you have to buy a new textbook.

Somehow every professor seems to have their own “special edition” textbook for class… And somehow it’s always a couple hundred bucks… And somehow, it's ALWAYS required.

3. Hearing "attendance is not mandatory," but knowing attendance is VERY mandatory.

Your professor will tell you that they don’t take attendance. Your professor will put all lecture slides online. Your professor will even record their lectures and make those available as well. Yet if you still don’t go to class, you’ll fail for sure. Coming into lecture after missing just one day feels like everyone has learned an entire new language.

4. You’re never the smartest person in your class anymore.

No matter what subject, what class or what concentration, there will always be someone who is just that much better at it than you.

5. You get totally geeked out when you learn an awesome new fact.

Today in genetics you learned about mosaicism. The fact that somebody can have a disease in part of their total body cells but normal throughout all others gets you so hype. Even though you know that your family, friends and neighbors don’t actually care about your science facts, you HAVE to tell them all anyways.

6. There is never enough time in a day.

You are always stuck choosing between studying, eating, sleeping and having fun. If you're lucky, you'll get three of these done in one day. But if you're a risk taker, you can try to do all of these at once.

7. You question your major (and your sanity) almost daily.

This is especially true when it’s on a Tuesday night and you’ve already consumed a gallon of Starbucks trying to learn everything possible before your . Or maybe this is more prevalent when you have only made it through about half of the BioChem chapter and you have to leave for your three hour lab before your exam this afternoon. Regardless, you constantly wonder if all the stress is actually worth it, but somehow always decide that it is.

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Saying "No" Is OK

It is okay to put yourself first and do what's best for you


It's that time of year again when your days are filled with nothing but class, work, assignments, clubs, extracurricular activities and much more. Your time and brain are going in every possible direction. But what if it didn't have to be that way? What if letting go, actually gave you something back? That's right, I am talking about the word no and all it can do for you.

I too, fall into the trap of doing more is better. Having all my time devoted to activities or work is good for me. Taking nineteen plus credits hours somehow makes me a better person, even smarter person. Well, I hate to break it you, and me, that this thought process is extremely detrimental.

There are no rules that say we must do everything and anything. If there are, they are wrong. And that's why saying no is so important.

Currently, I am taking nineteen credit hours. Soon, I am going to make sure that it is sixteen. After the first week of classes, I discovered I was in a class that would provide me with a wonderful education, but it was not counting towards my major. After thinking about it long and hard, I decided that it would be best to say no to this particular class.

Before this year, I would have said, it's okay (even if it wasn't) and muster through the class. To the old me, dropping a class would be like quitting, but I cannot even begin to tell you, and me, how far from the truth that is.

Saying no is brave. Saying no is the right thing to do. Saying no allows you to excel in other areas. Because I have decided to say no, I am opening two more hours in my day. I am relieving myself of work and projects that would add to my already hectic schedule. I am doing what is best for me.

However, there is a part two to this no phenomenon. Continuing with my example, I now have two open hours in my week. The overachiever in me would try to find something to fill it. Maybe another club or activity. Maybe more hours at work or a place to volunteer. And while none of these are bad things to do or have in your life, you are just replacing a time taker with another. When you say no, mean it and don't fill it.

This is your year to say no. Not because you are lazy. Not because you aren't smart enough. Not because you can't. Say no because it is best for you. Say no because it frees you. Say no because you can!

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