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Classes I Won’t Be Able to Take by Abby H. '20

also "What Is Pre-Registration?"

At MIT, we have pre-registration as well as regular registration. This confused young freshman me, so slightly less young senior me will try to explain:

  • Pre-registration opens very early, and regular registration opens very late. For example, pre-registration for Fall 2019 opened May 1, 2019, but registration won’t open until August 26. This is different from most other universities where you register several weeks or months before the first day of classes.
  • Pre-registration is not as binding as regular registration. You can resubmit your pre-reg subjects as often as you want. However, once you submit your regular registration, you will have to complete an add-drop form if you want to make any changes.
  • Pre-registration is about helping you figure out what classes you want to take and helping the administrators figure out how popular classes will likely be. There are some classes that are always very popular and that will take pre-reg status into consideration when deciding who gets to take the class.
  • You can submit as many classes as you want for either pre-reg or registration. Since pre-registration is required, some people just submit one or two classes to make the deadline while they figure out what classes they actually want to take. Some people still can’t decide when registration period rolls around, so they register for twenty classes, attend the first lectures, and choose which ones to drop. There isn’t a wrong way to do it, just as long as you submit something.
  • Incoming freshmen do not have to pre-register. I panicked a little about this after an upperclassmen told freshmen me that I should do it ASAP during orientation week. You’ll register with your advisor, and everything will be fine, even if you don’t get to take the HASS you want to take that semester.

I submitted my Fall 2019 pre-registration on May 1 because I knew exactly what classes I wanted to take in the fall. Then, as has happened the last few times I have submitted my pre-reg without an ounce of doubt in my mind, I had some second thoughts. I just resubmitted my pre-reg yesterday. Only two of the classes that I originally submitted are still on the list. I went from this:my originally planned class schedule showing four classesto this:my updated pre-registration schedule with 6 classes

…which is quite the leap. (The pictures are blurry because I grabbed them with snipping tool.) I won’t go into what these classes are about because the schedule will likely change by the time I actually register, but the classes I’ve added are 20.101 Metakaryotic Biology and Epidemiology, 21A.508 Culture and Ethics in Science Fiction Worlds, 4.354 Introduction to Video and Related Media, and 9.72 Vision in Art and Neuroscience. The last one is sort of the reason why I’m writing this post. There are some classes that you won’t really find out about unless you read the course catalog. I can’t believe it took me three years of MIT before I actually decided to look at the entire course catalog. You should do it. Now. Here is the link.

I have spent a whole afternoon looking at this catalog now, thinking about what could have been. I only have a year left at MIT, and there’s no way I’m going to get to take all the classes I’ve discovered, despite MIT’s unlimited units policy.01 this is legit one of the best things about MIT--you can register for as many classes as you want, as long as the number of units is greater than or equal to 36! you pay the same tuition regardless! unfortunately I am only mentally equipped for about 4.5 classes a semester so I've been sticking to degree requirements This post will serve as the repository of courses that I likely won’t get to fit into my final year, a sampling of what could have been. Tag yourself!

Course 1
  1. 1.007: Big Engineering: Small Solutions with a Large Impact
  2. 1.009: Climate Change
  3. 1.018/7.30/12.031: Fundamentals of Ecology
  4. 1.057: Heritage Science and Technology
  5. 1.063: Fluids and Diseases02 I just imagine one big sneeze
  6. 1.081/20.104: Environmental Cancer Risks, Prevention, and Therapy
  7. 1.084: Applied Microbiology
  8. 1.089: Earth’s Microbiomes
Course 2
  1. 2.180/6.027: Biomolecular Feedback Systems
  2. 2.184/9.34: Biomechanics and Neural Control of Movement
  3. 2.787/HST.535: Tissue Engineering and Organ Regeneration
  4. 2.799: The Cell as a Machine03 I find molecular motors really interesting
Course 3
  1. 3.034A: Organic and Biomaterials Chemistry
  2. 3.094: Materials in Human Experience
  3. 3.095: Introduction to Metalsmithing04 nothing more badass than a forge
  4. 3.985/5.24/12.011: Archaeological Science
  5. 3.987: Human Evolution: Data from Paleontology, Archaeology, and Materials Science
Course 4:
  1. 4.110: Design Across Scales and Disciplines05 I was going to take this last semester, but I was worried I wouldn't have enough time for a fifth class (turns out I kind of did)
  2. 4.301: Introduction to Artistic Experimentation
  3. 4.320: Introduction to Sound Creations
  4. 4.602: Modern Art and Mass Culture
Course 5
  1. 5.08/7.08: Biological Chemistry II
  2. 5.353: Macromolecular Prodrugs
  3. 5.361: Expression and Purification of Enzyme Mutants
  4. 5.362: Kinetics of Enzyme Inhibition
Course 6
  1. 6.580/20.305: Principles of Synthetic Biology06 I've read up on Synthia a bit and I am amazed
  2. 6.805/STS.085 Foundations of Information Policy
  3. 6.903: Patents, Copyrights, and the Law of Intellectual Property
Course 7
  1. 7.20/HST.540: Human Physiology
  2. 7.21: Microbial Physiology
  3. 7.23/20.230: Immunology
  4. 7.26: Molecular Basis of Infectious Disease
  5. 7.27: Principles of Human Disease and Aging07 aggghhhhh I want to take this so bad I've been working on DNA damage research for two years now
  6. 7.28: Molecular Biology
  7. 7.31: Current Topics in Mammalian Biology: Medical Implications
  8. 7.33/6.049: Evolutionary Biology: Concepts, Models, and Computation
  9. 7.37/10.441/20.361: Molecular and Engineering Aspects of Biotechnology
  10. 7.371: Biological and Engineering Principles Underlying Novel Biotherapeutics
  11. 7.46: Building with Cells
  12. 7.64: Molecular Mechanisms, Pathology, and Therapy of Human Neuromuscular Disorders
  13. 7.70: Regulation of Gene Expression
  14. 7.72: Stem Cells, Regeneration, and Development08 I took a developmental biology class last semester and now I am torn between wanting to study cancer or neuroscience or development or regular cell bio
  15. 7.77: Nucleic Acids, Structure, Function, Evolution, and Their Interactions with Proteins
  16. 7.95: Cancer Biology
  17. 7.98/9.301: Neural Plasticity in Learning and Memory
Course 8:
  1. 8.282/12.402: Introduction to Astronomy
  2. 8.286: The Early Universe
Course 9:
  1. 9.00: Introduction to Psychological Science
  2. 9.012: Cognitive Science
  3. 9.04: Sensory Systems
  4. 9.13: The Human Brain
  5. 9.16: Cellular and Synaptic Neurophysiology
  6. 9.24: Disorders and Diseases of the Nervous System09 it's amazing how I am vehemently opposed to going to med school when I find disease so fascinating
  7. 9.26/20.205: Principles and Applications of Genetic Engineering for Biotechnology and Neuroscience
  8. 9.32: Genes, Circuits, and Behavior
  9. 9.35: Perception
  10. 9.42: The Brain and Its Interface with the Body
  11. 9.46: Neuroscience of Morality
  12. 9.48/24.08: Philosophical Issues in Brain Science
  13. 9.49: Neural Circuits for Cognition
  14. 9.85: Infant and Early Childhood Cognition
Course 10
  1. 10.424: Pharmaceutical Engineering
  2. 10.443: Future Medicine: Drug Delivery, Therapeutics, and Diagnostics
  3. 10.495: Molecular Design and Bioprocess Development of Immunotherapeutics
  4. 10.540: Intracellular Dynamics
  5. 10.548/HST.525: Tumor Microenvironment and Immuno-Oncology: A Systems Biology Approach10 I just recently found out about the tumor microenvironment field and honestly everyone should be a course 7 why isn't everyone a course 7
  6. 10.606: Picturing Science and Engineering
  7. 10.644/HST.914: Frontiers in Therapeutics and Drug Delivery
Course 11
  1. 11.015/21H.226: Riots, Strikes, and Conspiracies in American History11 I like the messy side of history
  2. 11.133/21A.302/WGS.271: Dilemmas in Biomedical Ethics: Playing God or Doing Good?
Course 12
  1. 12.001: Introduction to Geology
  2. 12.007: Geobiology: History of Life on Earth
  3. 12.177: Astrobiology, Origins, and Early Evolution of Life12 I Want To Believe
  4. 12.178: The Phylogenomic Planetary Record
  5. 12.400: The Solar System
Course 14
  1. 14.64 Labor Economics and Public Policy
Course 16
  1. 16.400: Human Systems Engineering
  2. 16.423/HST.515/IDS.337: Aerospace Biomedical and Life Support Engineering13 NASA pls hire me to do experiments on your astronauts
Course 17
  1. 17.20: Introduction to the American Political Process14 I think everybody needs to take this class
  2. 17.28/21H.213: The War at Home: American Politics and Society in Wartime
  3. 17.315: Health Policy
  4. 17.42: Causes and Prevention of War
  5. 17.581: Riots, Rebellions, Revolutions
Course 18
  1. 18.781 Theory of Numbers15 F-cking Numbers, How Do They Work?
Course 20
  1. 20.020: Introduction to Biological Engineering Design Using Synthetic Biology
  2. 20.202: In vivo Models: Principles and Practices16 I care about the mice
  3. 20.213: Genome Stability and Engineering in the Context of Diseases, Drugs, and Public Health
  4. 20.365: Engineering the Immune System in Cancer and Beyond
  5. 20.375: Applied Developmental Biology and Tissue Engineering
Course 21A
  1. 21A.01 How Culture Works
  2. 21A.103/STS.046/WGS.225: The Science of Race, Sex, and Gender
  3. 21A.120: American Dream: Exploring Class in the US
  4. 21A.132/21G.058: Race and Migration in Europe
  5. 21A.155: Food, Culture, and Politics
  6. 21A.305/STS.062: Drugs, Politics, and Culture
  7. 21A.311: The Social Lives of Medical Objects17 I took 21A.500 Technology and Culture with the professor of this class (Moran-Thomas) and she was great
  8. 21A.411/21H.380: People and Other Animals
  9. 21A.501/STS.074: Art, Craft, Science
  10. 21A.505/21G.069/STS.065: The Anthropology of Sound18 almost took this last semester but scheduling conflict
  11. 21A.520: Magic, Science, and Religion19 I think this is the class I heard about where they brought in actual witches as guest speakers
Course 21G
  1. 21G.024/24.906: The Linguistic Study of Bilingualism
  2. 21G.111: Chinese Calligraphy20 stroke order and direction and no prior knowledge of Chinese required
  3. 21G.705: Intensive Beginning Spanish for Medicine and Health21 I took four years of Spanish but I haven't used it since high school so I probably need beginner training
Course 21H
  1. 21H.00: The History of Now22 this is supposed to be like a current events + historical context seminar
  2. 21H.001: How to Stage a Revolution
  3. 21H.273: From Coca to Cocaine: Drug Economies in Latin America23 I took IB History of the Americas and developed a heavy interest in Latin American history but ended up not declaring that as my HASS concentration and maybe I regret it a little
  4. 21H.315: American Consumer Culture
  5. 21H.332: Christianity in America
  6. 21H.333: Early Christianity24 I went to Christian school until eighth grade, and though I can recite whole chapters from the Bible, I know very little about the early church
  7. 21H.381/WGS.222: Women and War
Course 21L
  1. 21L.013/21M.013: The Supernatural in Music, Literature, and Culture
  2. 21L.024: Literature and Existentialism
  3. 21L.580: Translations25 the IB English Lit works in translation unit was my favorite
Course 21M
  1. 21M.608: Screenwriting26 I wish I was funny enough to be professionally funny
  2. 21M.623: Physical Improvisation27 maybe this would help me be less stiff
Course WGS
  1. WGS.228: Psychology of Sex and Gender
  2. WGS.250: HIV/AIDS in American Culture
Course 24
  1. 24.00: Problems of Philosophy
  2. 24.09: Minds and Machines
  3. 24.118: Paradox and Infinity
  4. 24.120: Moral Psychology
  5. 24.211: Theory of Knowledge28 a third shoutout to IB
  6. 24.221: Metaphysics
  7. 24.230: Meta-ethics
  8. 24.9000: How Language Works29 I wanted to take linguistics classes but the way things are scheduled, it wouldn't have worked out well unless I took 24.900 Intro to Linguistics my freshman fall. Additionally, I'm anxious that formally studying linguistics would make me enjoy it less
  9. 24.901: Language and Its Structure I: Phonology
  10. 24.904: Language Acquisition
  11. 24.914: Language Variation and Change
  12. 24.915: Linguistic Phonetics
Edgerton Center
  1. EC.305: Digital and Darkroom Imaging30 someone please explain to me how photos are developed
Health Sciences and Technology
  1. HST.031: Human Pathology
  2. HST.081: Hematology31 hematopoetic stem cells? dope
  3. HST.516: Sleep and Circadian Clocks: From Biology to Public Health
  4. HST.718: Anatomy of Speech and Hearing
  5. HST.721: The Biology of the Inner Ear
Naval Studies
  1. NS.22: Navigation32 pretty sure this class is just for ROTC kids but I would love to be able to navigate using the stars and such
Science, Technology, and Society
  1. STS.009: Evolution and Society
  2. STS.050: The History of MIT33 I'm gonna try and take this as a listener wish me luck

 

Okay, in retrospect maybe this isn’t the best “tag yourself” prompt. It does kind of read like the results of a personality quiz, though. A personality karyotype. I think it’s interesting how the categories with the most classes are the ones that I have considered majoring in (sorry courses 15 and 22). Congrats for making it to the end of the post. Your prize is a couple of screenshots of a funny thing my phone did. Glad to know I am visually similar to sad cats.a chart showing what cat pictures originally looked like before they were photoshopped into the sad cat memethe photos app identifying a picture of me next to a turtle as related to the sad cat meme chart picture

 

  1. this is legit one of the best things about MIT--you can register for as many classes as you want, as long as the number of units is greater than or equal to 36! you pay the same tuition regardless! unfortunately I am only mentally equipped for about 4.5 classes a semester so I've been sticking to degree requirements back to text
  2. I just imagine one big sneeze back to text
  3. I find molecular motors really interesting back to text
  4. nothing more badass than a forge back to text
  5. I was going to take this last semester, but I was worried I wouldn't have enough time for a fifth class (turns out I kind of did) back to text
  6. I've read up on Synthia a bit and I am amazed back to text
  7. aggghhhhh I want to take this so bad I've been working on DNA damage research for two years now back to text
  8. I took a developmental biology class last semester and now I am torn between wanting to study cancer or neuroscience or development or regular cell bio back to text
  9. it's amazing how I am vehemently opposed to going to med school when I find disease so fascinating back to text
  10. I just recently found out about the tumor microenvironment field and honestly everyone should be a course 7 why isn't everyone a course 7 back to text
  11. I like the messy side of history back to text
  12. I Want To Believe back to text
  13. NASA pls hire me to do experiments on your astronauts back to text
  14. I think everybody needs to take this class back to text
  15. F-cking Numbers, How Do They Work? back to text
  16. I care about the mice back to text
  17. I took 21A.500 Technology and Culture with the professor of this class (Moran-Thomas) and she was great back to text
  18. almost took this last semester but scheduling conflict back to text
  19. I think this is the class I heard about where they brought in actual witches as guest speakers back to text
  20. stroke order and direction and no prior knowledge of Chinese required back to text
  21. I took four years of Spanish but I haven't used it since high school so I probably need beginner training back to text
  22. this is supposed to be like a current events + historical context seminar back to text
  23. I took IB History of the Americas and developed a heavy interest in Latin American history but ended up not declaring that as my HASS concentration and maybe I regret it a little back to text
  24. I went to Christian school until eighth grade, and though I can recite whole chapters from the Bible, I know very little about the early church back to text
  25. the IB English Lit works in translation unit was my favorite back to text
  26. I wish I was funny enough to be professionally funny back to text
  27. maybe this would help me be less stiff back to text
  28. a third shoutout to IB back to text
  29. I wanted to take linguistics classes but the way things are scheduled, it wouldn't have worked out well unless I took 24.900 Intro to Linguistics my freshman fall. Additionally, I'm anxious that formally studying linguistics would make me enjoy it less back to text
  30. someone please explain to me how photos are developed back to text
  31. hematopoetic stem cells? dope back to text
  32. pretty sure this class is just for ROTC kids but I would love to be able to navigate using the stars and such back to text
  33. I'm gonna try and take this as a listener wish me luck back to text