May 22nd marked the last day of a two week exam period. After about 18 weeks of school, the second semester of my graduate program culminated in six exams over the course of two weeks. Much excitement, nervousness, and tears enveloped this semester, and by the final few weeks of group presentations and papers, it was all any of my classmates and I could do to turn in our papers on time! Here’s a look at how I weathered the storm during second semester courses.
|Saying see you later (not goodbye) to my host club, the Rotary Club of Tema, May 12, 2015
I thought first semester was rough, but second semester proved to be a monster! In one class it seemed like we were giving presentations every day, in another there was so much information I wasn’t sure where to begin with taking class notes or what the salient points were (because it all seemed very relevant), and in statistics class, there were some new concepts I did not remember from undergrad. Although our professor assumed we had learned these things in undergraduate school (which we hadn’t), thankfully he went back and broke everything down. After crunching a few numbers, here’s what I came up with for the workload this semester:
- 13 Papers
- 6 Group Presentations
- 35 Pages written (typed) for independent papers
- 38 Pages written (typed) for group papers
- 62 Pages written (by hand) for exams
Total pages of final drafts completed for assignments and exams=35 pages
I’d have to say that my favorite class this semester was the qualitative side of research methods. In addition to learning how to really think like a social scientist, we discussed the different assumptions of qualitative research, the five approaches to qualitative research inquiry, and read some really fascinating articles. I’m also looking forward to working toward having two papers published, with the help of my professors.
|Tutoring for our statistics exam, May 16, 2015
All I can say for exams is that God got me through them. There were times when I was so exhausted, so tired of studying. I felt that I couldn’t pack anymore information in my brain and all Iwanted to do was head to Cape Coast for a night of hi-life music at the Goil gas station! At times I was studying so hard I developed headaches, and while there was a lot more to be done, I had to break and call it a night to get some rest before exams. By the fourth exam I wasn’t sure how much I could take, and b the fifth exam, I felt like I was in the Twilight Zone. But by the end of the sixth exam, once it was all over, I walked out of the exam hall with a swing in my step and a song in my heart. I stopped to talk with my classmates who were in the library studying for their elective exams, walked around my department to tell my professors and the IT guys goodbye, and then I made my way off campus. There really wasn’t much sadness: I knew I would return to Ghana and that I would continue to build relationships with the UG faculty, administration and my colleagues. The road wasn’t easy, but the next evening, when I finally finished packing and stepped on the plane to fly home, there was relief, joy, and thankfulness to God in heart for helping me survive. The road to and through Ghana was rocky, but I was able to hike my way through!
This ends my discussion on exam week. Later this week, I’ll discuss my first week back home in the US and catching up on all the things I’ve missed in the past year. Stay tuned!