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Physical Science class reccomendations?

SandorSandor Registered User regular
edited July 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

Sandor on

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    EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

    Look through your course catalog and read the descriptions. Also, a huge part of the class is dependent on the professor. Try using ratemyprofessor.com to get a handle on the teachers, but take it with a grain of salt.

    Do any of these relate to your major? Really, just pick one that sounds interesting.

    Esh on
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    enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    If you don't want something math-y, definitely avoid physics. At Michigan, geology and astronomy were generally seen as the easiest options for your natural science credits.

    enlightenedbum on
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    ceresceres When the last moon is cast over the last star of morning And the future has past without even a last desperate warningRegistered User, Moderator mod
    edited July 2011
    I hear geology can be pretty fun. I took an oceanography class in high school, and it actually gets pretty complicated, but I don't remember there being anything in the way of math. It's also a neat mix of geography, physics (without the math), ecology, and biology. Different kinds of things can only survive at certain depths, and you get to learn a lot about the constant pressure and motion of tectonic plates - something that's timely, what with all the earthquakes in Japan and their aftermath. Learning about currents can tell you everything from migration patterns of certain wildlife to where your trash goes when you're done with it. You might even learn what's happening to all that oil BP dropped the ball on last year.

    ceres on
    And it seems like all is dying, and would leave the world to mourn
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    SandorSandor Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

    Look through your course catalog and read the descriptions. Also, a huge part of the class is dependent on the professor. Try using ratemyprofessor.com to get a handle on the teachers, but take it with a grain of salt.

    Do any of these relate to your major? Really, just pick one that sounds interesting.

    I'm a film major, so not really. These are just the last credits I need to finish up in my last semester before getting my AA and transferring to a UC or wherever I want to go.

    Sandor on
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    EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Sandor wrote: »
    Esh wrote: »
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

    Look through your course catalog and read the descriptions. Also, a huge part of the class is dependent on the professor. Try using ratemyprofessor.com to get a handle on the teachers, but take it with a grain of salt.

    Do any of these relate to your major? Really, just pick one that sounds interesting.

    I'm a film major, so not really. These are just the last credits I need to finish up in my last semester before getting my AA and transferring to a UC or wherever I want to go.

    I would say Geology, but I'm an Anthro minor, so I'm a little biased.

    Esh on
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    KistraKistra Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

    Any of those classes can be taught with a lot of math and none of them have to be. Personally, I find all of those topics interesting, but again, classes on those subjects can either be fun and interesting or horribly boring depending on how they are taught. Look at the class descriptions and ask around and see if you know anyone who has taken them with the professors you are considering.

    Kistra on
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    RaekreuRaekreu Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

    If my google-fu and intuition has served me correctly, PHSN is probably straight up physical science.

    If it IS physical science, it's more or less physics with training wheels on. I took the class in high school and we spent a lot of time learning how simple tools (wheel & axle, lever & fulcrum, wedge, pulley, screw, and inclined plane/ramp) can be combined to make every object with moving parts that has ever been invented. We also covered a lot of concepts that end in -ion: radiation, convection, condensation, evaporation, acceleration, torsion, and in one impromptu lesson, explosions.

    Raekreu on
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    TerraTerra Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Astronomy can go either way with how much math is involved. I had to take two classes of it. The first, I had an amazing teacher and it turned out to be the best class I've ever taken. It was like weeks of being in a Nova show. We only had to learn three or four basic formulas. In the second, the prof was new and had no idea what he was doing. It was mostly incomprehensible math and not at all enjoyable.

    So it depends on who you get.

    Unless you want to understand calculus better, don't do physics.

    Terra on
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    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    I think Physical Science, assuming that's what the mystery class is, would be more intuitive (at least it is for me). Chemistry was a nightmare for me out of high school. Do you have any leaning or previous experience with any of these topics?

    edit: Good chance that entry level physical science doesn't use calculus (but calculus is awesome anyway).

    Skoal Cat on
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    TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.

    Look through your course catalog and read the descriptions. Also, a huge part of the class is dependent on the professor. Try using ratemyprofessor.com to get a handle on the teachers, but take it with a grain of salt.

    Do any of these relate to your major? Really, just pick one that sounds interesting.

    The subject of the class is really secondary when it comes to how much you'll like it: check the professor out online and go with whoever has the best ratings.

    TychoCelchuuu on
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    wonderpugwonderpug Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Dammit, forum ate my post. Abbreviated version: can you post the course descriptions for your astronomy options? Since you're interested in space, it seems like there's got to be a non-mathy course that you'd really enjoy.

    wonderpug on
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    a5ehrena5ehren AtlantaRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    If you want to avoid math at all costs, Geology is what you want from those choices. That said, the math in the (intro?) astronomy course shouldn't be more than basic arithmetic and unit conversions (like light years to kilometers, parsecs, etc). If that's the one you're interested in, take that.

    a5ehren on
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    amateurhouramateurhour One day I'll be professionalhour The woods somewhere in TennesseeRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    If you're college is anything like mine was, or any of the others I've ever heard of, Geology is going to be the easiest, most math-less class. In a lot of schools it's dubbed "rocks for jocks"

    Personally I'd go for Astronomy or Oceanography.

    amateurhour on
    are YOU on the beer list?
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    StraygatsbyStraygatsby Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    As a fellow film student who also had to suffer through some basic GenEd, I'd rec Geology. It's the ezmode of all those courses (if you don't care about learning anything). PHSN is probably the shorthand for the basic physical sciences course which is rockdumbeasy in most colleges and designed for people who have zee-ro interest in the hard sciences but need a basic req filled.

    I found Astronomy to be one of the most fun and fascinating classes I *had* to take, but it's certainly more work than Geo.

    Straygatsby on
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    Sir CarcassSir Carcass I have been shown the end of my world Round Rock, TXRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    In college I took:

    Physics
    Physics II
    Geology
    Chemistry
    Astronomy

    Of those, I found Geology the most fun, but for all of those whether I enjoyed it largely depended on the teacher. Geology had basically no math that I remember. The hardest part for me was the lab exams where we had to identify various minerals by sight.

    My Geology final was a 100 question multiple choice test. I noticed as I was going along that I had an awful lot of C's for the answer. Like 95%. I went back and looked at the ones that weren't C and either realized they should be or could have gone either way, so I changed those to C. When I turned it in, I said, "These answers look a little strange" and the instructor said, "Looks like an A to me". <3 that class.

    Sir Carcass on
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    SyrdonSyrdon Registered User regular
    edited July 2011
    Sandor wrote: »
    I'm signing up for classes for fall right now, and I need one earth science class to complete. I have between Astronomy, Chemistry, Earth, Geology, Oceanography, Phsn (dunno what it is), and Physics to pick from. I'm kind of leaning towards Astronomy because I love space, but a friend of mine told me it's more math than space. Anyone care to recommend something? Thanks.
    Do they list prerequisites or corequisites for the phsyics and astronomy courses? If its going to be a math heavy physics course then you should see a calculus pre/co-req. If you don't, then it should be pretty light on the math (you can teach all of first semester physics with algebra or less).

    Also, how much do you want to avoid math? Alternately, where do you start being uncomfortable with math (fractions, calculus, algebra, whatnot)?

    Syrdon on
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