Friday, April 29, 2011

Limping Toward the Finish

Honesty is so refreshing these days
This was the last week of the semester, and I gave oral to women on three different occasions this week, which made things seem incredibly hectic. Now that I have your attention, settle down. My life isn't that interesting!

On Monday I had my final French oral exam. It went well, at least in the beginning, as my female partner and I were reasonably prepared for our skit and art conversation. Things started going downhill once we were required to ask each other questions from a predetermined list of questions in various tenses. The professor started dropping our generally high scores on the grade sheet. At least, we got through it with at least a C.

On Thursday, I had to rent a campus Zipcar for a trip to Wake Tech's Health Education facility for an oral exam that I had promised to do for an old acquaintance from high school that friended me on Facebook. It was okay, although I got there early and ended up sitting in the wrong building for half an hour before anyone came out and asked me why I was there. I was told that I needed to walk to the opposite side of a parking deck from where I was to get to the dental facility. I had some x-rays of my horribly crooked teeth made, but otherwise my teeth were apparently in too good a condition for actual cleaning work to be done. Since it is a teaching facility for dental hygienists, they wanted someone whose teeth were worse off than mine, I guess. At any rate, it was nice to see an old classmate who somehow managed to have a daughter in the intervening years and somehow didn't gain much weight, as so many of my other high school comrades and I have.

Today was the last day of classes, and I had to give an oral presentation, with the girls in my group, in Psych Research Methods about the observational study that my team and I are performing. The study is to determine the extent to which students self-segregate, based on race or gender, in college lecture halls. Fortunately, I had already scoped out some classrooms before we were given permission to collect data, so I was able to get photographs for three lecture halls on Wednesday. While we haven't done the actual analysis, yet, we are seeing a trend in the photos that indicates that men and women are segregating from one another. We will have to do a statistical analysis to fully determine if people are segregating along racial lines. Hopefully, my team can all get together next week to analyze the photos, as we still have a paper to write about our study.

Despite the fact that I still have exams to take over the next two weeks, I have mixed feelings about the end of the semester. This has been a semester full of adjustment for me, from adjusting culturally to the students, to adjusting to the norms of giant lectures and the course requirements of NC State's classes, to adjusting physically to all the walking I have had to do now that I have no car. It would be nice to have a little more time for adjustment. But, I do have expectations for the future. I have tentative plans for doing research with the Doctor over the summer, and definitely in the fall. And, I will need to investigate what I need to do to take my GREs in the fall, as well. I also have a full class load for next semester including the PSY 240 series (more research methods courses), Cognitive Processes, Intro to Finite Math, Intermediate French, and Fitness Walking (the last PE class I will have to take, but which will no doubt be more of a challenge than I am expecting).

I feel like I've taken a lot of bruises to my ego this term, and I'm still worried about what my final grades will be once my exams are complete. But the battle is only getting started. To quote the film Predator, "I ain't got time to bleed!" Hopefully, I'll get a little bit of a rest over the summer before the real battles begin.

If I didn't know better, I'd think that almost sounded like optimism.

Have fun and keep living life... Or Some Approximation Thereof.

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