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MIT student blogger Natnael G. '15

A Frosh No More by Natnael G. '15

Goodbye GIRs and Intro Classes, hello course 6!

With another add date passing and classes in full swing, I thought I’d take a moment to tell you guys what I’m up to for the semester.

This semester is going to be class heavy because I’m doubling up on HASS classes to make up for a humanities free freshman spring semester. Finishing 6.01 and 6.042 (both intro classes to course 6-3 that I absolutely despised) last semester I’m finally able to jump into a couple of the CS classes that interest me. The report is in after 4 weeks and I absolutely love all of my classes.  After genuinely considering changing my major at the end of last semester, it’s a nice change of pace.

6.006 Introduction To Algorithms – 12 Unit

This has to be my favorite class so far. Professor Rivest (the R in RSA encryption and CLRS) and Professor Indyk (a leader in the field of Computational Geometry) are both wonderful lecturers and the material is not only relevant but extremely useful in everyday coding life. A staple course for anyone hoping to have technical interviews, 006 has yet to disappoint.

6.034 Artificial Intelligence – 12 Units

034 is a class that I’m slowly enjoying more and more. Hearing mixed reviews about Winston and his no electronics policy I was wary coming in but all my fears have dissipated. Professor Winston is an amazingly consistent lecturer whose multi colored chalk and well prepared lectures make the 10am time slot worth it.

6.004 Computation Structures – 12 Units

004 is the course 6 class that everyone recommends you take before you judge the major. Starting from transistors you move your way up digital logic and at the end of the class have your own virtual 32bit processor. And with the class being taught the same way for over 18 semesters there are a ton of resources and help to be found. On top of that, the lecturer, Professor Terman, is wonderful and amazingly consistent.

21F.571 Japanese 1 – 9 Units (kind of)

To clarify the “kind of”, whenever you take a language course with globalization both of them become 9 unit classes (this is for freshman with a credit cap) but you do all the work of your 12 unit counterparts.

Japanese is an interesting class that keeps you on your feet with 2-3 quizzes a week. Every day is filled with situational sentence drilling and grammar lessons. While I love the language, it’s definitely a difficult class and I wonder how it’ll end up.

21F.076 Globalization – 9 Units

The idea behind Globalization is to offer a CI-H that you can take with a language class without falling behind in your HASS requirement. Going from no hass classes to two this semester has been an interesting change of pace that’s led to hundreds of pages of readings. While I still have mixed feelings about this class it’s no doubt that both of the professors are splendid. Professor Resnick’s stories alone make this class worth it.

ES.200 ESG Teaching Seminar – 6 Units

A requirement to TA in ESG, this class is a great time to sit down, eat ice cream and discuss what it takes to be a great TA. This class is an amazing end to stressful weeks.