Homework at USNA

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by JHORNET44, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. JHORNET44

    JHORNET44 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2009
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    0
    What would a typical night's homework be at the Academy your Plebe year, and eventually once you begin to focus in on your major? Do you get a lot of homework every night, or are some nights relatively light, but the next overwhelming?

    Thanks.
     
  2. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    4,502
    Likes Received:
    454
    Current mids can obviously speak better than I but, generally in college, they say to do 2 hrs homework for each hour in class. At USNA I found that pretty accurate.

    Obviously, each mid will have courses in which he/she is stronger and weaker and which thus may require more/less homework. And, of course, the amount of homework can vary night to night.

    As you get more senior, you will likely have courses that involve some sort of project (an engineering design or major paper) in which you have to decide how to allocate your time. Done properly, you probably still should be spending 2 hrs/hr of class but have more flexibility when to put in that time.

    One thing that was true in my day (and I suspect is true today as well) is that it's VERY important to keep up with your assignments. In my day, it wasn't uncommon for profs to give daily quizzes as an incentive to get folks to work every night. And, it's critical to get help if you feel yourself falling behind. There are many programs to help mids in academic difficulty (or just those who want extra help) -- more than in my day. They're there for a reason.
     
  3. tallbutshort

    tallbutshort Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2009
    Messages:
    237
    Likes Received:
    0
    I've heard that a lot but how does that work when plebes generally have six classes a day (I think)? That'd be 12 hours of hw a night...I must be misunderstanding something.
     
  4. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Messages:
    2,343
    Likes Received:
    1,809
    There are six class periods in a day. As with most colleges, some classes are only 3 class sessions a week, some more, plus labs. Roughly, a 3-credit class might meet 3 days a week, MWF, during the 2nd class period. There will be some free periods scattered throughout the week.
    Current mids can comment better on a typical class load, class schedule and homework.
     
  5. USNA '16

    USNA '16 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2009
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    0
    i think me and tallbutshort just had a "oh...that makes sense" moment. lol.
     
  6. kevster

    kevster Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2009
    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    1
    I have a friend at USNA (Aero Major) and I asked him this question a few weeks ago. He said he is normally up till 12 and 1 in the morning working on HW. It seems like all the math/science related courses take a lot of HW time (I think this would be accurate for most colleges?). I'm not at the Academy so im just going off of what my friend said to me. I would love to hear what other mids have to say on this topic.
     
  7. BucsNBraves13

    BucsNBraves13 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2009
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm a plebe right now so I guess I can give you my 2 cents on the homework question.

    You don't have any "busy work" like you might expect in high school...I have rarely been assigned homework. Most teachers give you a sheet the first day of class of all of your assignments and it's your responsibility to meet the deadlines and complete your work. While there isn't much work to do, there is a LOT of studying. Since there are no easy homework grades, tests and quizzes are very important. You have "study hour" from 8-10, and I usually study from 7:30 to 10, but that is with facebook and other distractors. It's really up to you and your study habits and how hard you feel you need to study to be ready for a quiz or test. I also had 18 credit hours this semester, so this was my "hard semester." I've noticed that I can usually take a break a couple nights, but then have to study a little more the next night to make up for it, but all-in-all not too bad. I haven't really done 2 hours per class.

    And to echo what 1985 said, you have to keep on top of things. As a plebe, you will have to balance all of your plebe duties with school and a varsity sport if you are on one. If you can learn good study habits and time management skills early on, it will help you immensely.
     
  8. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,227
    Likes Received:
    131
    This is probably best answered by a current/recent midshipman. However, one thing I recall is that your MAJOR had much to do with how much work you had. I was an Aerospace Engineering major and the amount of work I had to do, on a nightly basis, was significantly more difficult and time consuming than an English or Political Science major.

    I would be trying to solve complex and time-consuming Aerodynamic, Thermodynamic, and structural problems ... hoping I could finish it by the next day while my roommate is lying on his bed, reading a book about the formation of the early colonial government ... for his homework ... with no immediacy associated with it.

    How many members of the Naval Academy football team do you think major in a Group I (engineering) major? Very few - if any! The time demands of many varsity sports and the workload associated with those majors are completely incompatible.

    I have two sons currently at the Naval Academy. They are both pursuing the Medical Corps and doing very well. They were outstanding athletes in high school and even attended the Naval Academy baseball camps over the years. Once they got their appointments, my advise to them was: Don't play baseball at the Naval Academy! Long practices and missing Friday classes (team travel) does not facilitate academic excellence. It's a challenging balancing where you generally have to make sacrifices on both sides. Play intramurals - was my advice.

    That's one of the great things about the Naval Academy. EVERYBODY is on a "scholarship", of sorts. Even if you were recruited for football, lacrosse, basketball, swimming, or whatever ... you are not compelled to play that sport. Your "scholarship" is not dependent on your participation in that sport, unlike another university.
     
  9. 2012Cadet

    2012Cadet Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2008
    Messages:
    608
    Likes Received:
    0
    I second that...

    But it's definitely possible...there was an article in the paper about an Aero major at GT who also happens to be a center for the football team.
     
  10. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,227
    Likes Received:
    131
    re: varsity sports and time consuming major

    Of course it's "possible." And the reason you read about it in the newspaper is because it's a very unusual story. It's not common. And when it does happen - it becomes big news! That's why some newspaper reporter thought it worth writing an article about. It's that rare. Do you think that if this center for GT was a Political Science major that the reporter would have thought it worthy of a story? Somehow - I think not.

    GT? Does that stand for Georgia Tech?

    Civilian universities coddle their athletes much more than they do at a service academy.

    How many members of the USNA football team would you guess have a technical major? I'll bet very few.

    Some varsity sports are not nearly as time consuming. Varsity squash? C'mon! There's no comparing the amount of time consumed in some sports compared to sports like football, basketball, and baseball.
     
  11. JHORNET44

    JHORNET44 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2009
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks. I had been pondering that question for a bit.
     
  12. whubbard

    whubbard Candidate

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Really, you're actually going to pick on squash? :thumbdown:

    I don't post here a lot, but that was a rather uninformed call out, so I feel this post is warranted. I currently have my loa, nom and have passed my medical, so I'm just waiting for my appointment to the class of 2014. As a recruited athlete (for squash), I recently went down to Navy to visit the team. I am trying to make sure that Navy is the right school for me as I am also into MIT. All I can say is that even if you don't think squash takes as much time, I can promise you those guys are more exhausted on a nightly basis than almost any other group of athletes on campus.

    You should seriously consider your words before you go ahead and joke about the extra commitment of a varsity athlete at Navy, especially when you're going to single out a specific group.
     
  13. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    4,502
    Likes Received:
    454
    In my day (and it was a long time ago), varsity athletes also had certain benefits in terms of academics. They always selected their courses first, which allowed them to tweak their schedules to accommodate practice but also allowed them to select the "gouge" profs. I know this b/c I ended up in a EE class with most of the football team. They eat at team tables so don't get grilled on rates to the same extent as others. They don't typically stand WE watches. In my day, they didn't march in P-rades even out of season (believe this may have changed). And there are other benefits and ways USNA tries to make it easier for them to play sports and be at USNA.

    I'm not saying that playing varsity sports at USNA is easy -- it's not. And it's definitely a LOT harder than at most civilian schools. But varsity athletes do get benefits their peers don't get. It's a choice for all -- no one forces you to be a varsity athlete.
     
  14. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,227
    Likes Received:
    131
    Congratulations on your achievement. But if I were you, I wouldn't pretend to lecture me on this topic.

    Would you leave room for the possibility that the reason you found the post so offensive was because you are a squash player and, as a result, took it personally?

    I'm not saying squash is not difficult. I'm not saying it's not hard work. I sucked at it! But it does not, and will not, consume as much of your free time as some of the higher profile sports do.

    Time is at a premium in academy life. It is probably the most valuable of all the commodities. Well, next to sleep. :smile:

    Believe me, the football players will be missing more classes, will have more practices, and will be missing many more functions than you ever will by being on the squash team. My intent is not to denigrate the sport of squash. I just picked it as an example of a varsity sport that does not take up as much of one's time than other sports. My point is: They are all not created equally. And they all take up considerable amount of time that a non-varsity athlete does not have to contend with.

    Athletes may miss some parades - but the time savings by missing that parade is a drop in the bucket compared to the time consumed with their sport. They deserve to miss that parade.

    The varsity athletes will be at practice during the parade and for hours after the parade. The rest of the Brigade is going to march back to Bancroft Hall, hang up their rifle, take off the white gloves and chokers, and start studying for their Differential Equations quiz tomorrow. And the varsity athlete will still be at practice.

    It takes a special person to get high grades and participate in a varsity sport. Yes - even squash! :smile: I respect those guys. But, I can assure you, they are making academic compromises. Don't forget, some people are perfectly content with a 2.8 GPA. For some, the sport is more important than their grades.

    And, depending what your service selection preference may be ... your grades may not matter that much in the long run.

    Choices - choices - choices.
     

Share This Page