The further you get in your degree course for chemistry, the more flexibility you get with regards to choosing modules. This shouldn’t be a snap decision – it should be something that you seriously consider, as you will have not only have to study this module for months; but also sit and exam on it. I have recently had to choose my modules, and it was not a decision I took lightly, due to the implication choosing the wrong module could have on my grades.
There are a number of things you must consider before making a decision:
• The lecturer
• Personal interest
It is important to establish who the module convenor is, as if you don’t get on with their style of teaching, you won’t fully engage with the lectures, and in years 2 and 3 of chemistry, surface knowledge is not enough to succeed.
Your interest is another important consideration, you have to be interested in the module to some degree or you won’t put in any effort or bother turning up to lectures. This semester I chose advanced physical chemistry, which many perceive to be one of the most difficult modules, however due to personal interest, it’s the right choice for me. There’s no point picking a module that you’re not interested in- as it probably won’t relate to your future career and may put you off chemistry for life.
Finally, difficulty is an extremely important consideration. Even if you love a module, if you find it really difficult and have scored badly in the past in similar modules, don’t pick it. It may affect how you perceive the whole degree, and also affect your overall grade. Second year counts 40% for BSc and third year counts 60%, so a bad result can potentially push you down into the next degree classification, making the work in third year even harder. Don’t pick a module just because your friends are in the lecture- at the end of the day you are at University to get a good degree, and when a couple of hours apart could mean the difference between graduating with a 2.1 and a 1st.
Good luck with your modules this semester!!