Oh, it’s that time of year

That's right, it's halfway through the semester and it's time for me to take some midterms. And time for you to get a class update from me.

I've gone to 70 hours of class so far this semester:


... and I have 7.5 hours of midterms.

I had my first Neuroscience test last week. To be honest, it did not go very well. There were 40 multiple choice questions and 4 essay questions. One of the essay questions was:

Your wacky professor says that "your sensory systems are not there to report exactly what the stimuli out there really are; they're there to interpret them." What does this mean? Explain using at least 2 different research findings (hint: some of the illusions that we discussed work well for this purpose).

After reading that question, my thought process was something along the lines of "That's so cool! I love this class I can't believe that's an essay question that's like exactly what I'm all about and just 2 research findings? I could name 10! There's the rats that feel less pain with their moms and how we always look for faces in things and the kittens with the goggles and jeez this is what I talk to my friends about all the time. And illusions! I can't believe how great this class is it's like explaining every optical illusion I've ever been emailed..." and so on, slouched back in my chair, staring at the wall and glorifying cognitive science for about 15-20 minutes. At which point, I realized I had about 20 minutes left. To write 4 essays.

I decided to start with the other essays, since they'd be harder as I was less excited about them. I rushed through them, and had a couple minutes to write the last essay, which might as well have asked me "Hey Maia, why are you excited about taking this class?" I managed to quickly scratch out seven whole sentences before it was time to turn in the test. Yes, a seven sentence essay. It wasn't too bad - I ended up getting a 7/10 on that question (perhaps one point per sentence?), but I'm still pretty disappointed.

In other news, yesterday was my Linguistics midterm, which was... a nice ego-booster. (Even more so if I forget it's an intro freshman class).

Software Design, my sole Olin class, does not have any tests, but we are now switching from individual homework assignments to starting our half-semester long group project. My group's project is super cool. It's a web app that involves text messaging, python, OCR, Google App Engine, APIs and other fun acronyms. Stay tuned for updates.

Finally, my Consumer Behavior midterm is not until next week, so I haven't started studying yet. Wish me luck!

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