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SELECTING COURSES IN ERASMUS | FROM START TO FINISH

FEBRUARY 25, 2018
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ERASMUS … AGAIN

If you don’t know about Erasmus, just read here. You will understand everything pretty fast

The short version is this.

  1. Your university participates in this Erasmus program.
  2. They are happy
  3. They want to make you happy
  4. Erasmus program wants to show how everyone is happy.

You can usually go for 2 semesters during 1 cycle of study.

However, this is my 3rd semester in Poznan, Poland.

How come?

Well, I just finished bachelor and did it again during my master’s degree.

I was here for 2 semesters already.

Knowing how it works,  there was no reason to let the opportunity slide away.

However, because it wasn’t my first time, there were some issues.

The courses I could take.

This is how my list of available Erasmus courses looked like right now.

 

SELECTING FROM THE FEW OPTIONS AVAILABLE

So I had only these Erasmus courses available.

Why it’s so important to pick Erasmus courses?

Well, mostly because you’re only with Erasmus students and the professors know you’re not here to study like your life depends on it.

You actually aren’t here to study.

Just take a look at the start of the Erasmus journey called Orientation Week.

Basically 10 days of putting your liver to work.

Or your social skills if you can ignore the free drinks.

Anyway, I was a man on a mission here. 

I had to focus on 4 things

  1. Difficulty
  2. Timing
  3. Attendance
  4. Professor

Most important is difficulty because a good grade is my top priority. It allows me to get a scholarship for good performance in the 2nd year of Masters degree.

Second would be timing. What is the point of having easy courses if they still suck all the time out your day?

For example, I could start Monday at 8 AM and finish at 7 PM (19:00).

That doesn’t sound too sexy, does it?

It’s important to not get overburned.

Even top-performing athletes know that sometimes recovery is just as important as training.

The second most important thing is not feeling overwhelmed and having flexibility.

Last year my program was as follows.

Monday – 9:45 – 16:35
Tuesday – 8:00 – 13:00  
Wednesday – 14:45 – 16:15

This was an easy schedule because it allowed me to go at the gym on either day at a convenient time.

After 13 on Tuesdays and before 14:45 on Wednesdays.

Monday was usually free but I could skip the 13:00 – 16:35 course if I wanted to.

Ok, so we got a problem.

Time to find a solution.

I knew I wouldn’t be able to just pick the right courses by just looking at their names.

So I made a list with all courses that might fit the BIG 4 criterias.

Maybe I couldn’t predict the best courses for myself.

However, I could sacrifice the first 4 days of the semester to test most of them.

This is how my Excel list looked like after I made the decision to attend as many as possible.

(click image to zoom)

 

START OF THE SELECTION

Monday started with a course in programming.

Uhm, this was one of the reasons I study Marketing.

No programming languages involved.

This wasn’t really a good start.

At that moment I realized it won’t be as easy as I thought.

The more uninteresting courses you attend, the more you realize that the list gets shorter.

Waking up at 7 AM drains the energy faster, so I finished Monday after finding out that the 11:30 course, Macroeconomics of EU isn’t taking place.

To attend or to not attend the 18:30 (6:30 PM) course?

Maybe next week if I’m really thin on my list.

4 days later.

I made a list and graded all the courses I’ve gone to.

 

END OF SELECTION (HOPEFULLY)

After weighing the pros and cons, I tried to see which courses were a good fit for me personally.

Not to forget that the way in which the grade is given is also important.

Tests are somewhat unpredictable.

There is too much chance involved.

Preparing a presentation or a paper means there is less chance involved.

The feedback is given on the spot and if there’s anything that doesn’t seem right, you can always give a reason.

Maybe the professor just finds your work “interesting”.

During a test, there are not many “interesting” things you can come up with.

Maybe you can try making a star instead of a circle on a single choice question to highlight your answer, but that’s about it.

Here are the courses that I picked, after all, giving. I gave them the “green light”.

 

END OF THE WEEK

It was a challenging week.

Did I make the best possible list?

Probably not.

Did I do enough to be satisfied?

I would say so.

I did most of what was necessary to accomplish 80% of the desired results.

There is a high level of uncertainty in many of the courses.

However, this is not something new. Almost all the time we take decisions without being sure of the outcome.

The question is, how to remain confident in these type of situations?

Simple.

Know that you can outwork your way out of any obstacle.

I’m sure not everything will be as easy as expected.

Did I give the course a 2/5 difficulty? It might end up being a 4/5.

After all, the difficulty wasn’t the only criteria.

Not setting up specific expectations leaves room for less disappointment in the future.

Overall, this is the process I used and the conclusion I came up with.

If it works, then it will be a good process to use again in the future.

If it doesn’t work as expected, it might just need some tweaks.

Either way, using any type of process in decision making is better than not using anything at all.

 

BACK TO GOOD HABITS

Because of all the courses at the university, I didn’t get the chance to visit a specific place just yet.

So, at the end of the 4th day, on Thursday, it was time to visit it.

I enjoy this place so much that I will probably visit it around 80% of my time here in Poznan.

It’s the gym that keeps me fit while in Poland.

The Fit For Free gym.

It’s actually the only location from the franchise that is present in Poznan right now.

This one is located below the INEA Stadion.

If you don’t know, the city also has a pretty strong team called Lech Poznan.

Currently in 3rd place in the league. Not too bad.

Well, that was all for this post.

If you enjoyed any part of it, you can leave a comment down below.

To end the blog post, I’ll just finish it with an HDR’d image of the place I talked about in this last part.

If there’s anything on your mind, don’t be shy, you have the comment box down below ⇩⇩⇩ Promise I won’t bite ⇩⇩⇩

Life enthusiast with a great desire to constantly perfect myself, get in better physical and mental shape, while also helping other people by sharing everything I’ve been able to learn.