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Everything posted by AEC

  1. Unfortunately, they're all different. DS is taking 2 classes at the local JC this year. Only one is using Canvas, which he's used before, but a version local to the college and it's subtly different. And even then, assignments are to be submitted via an alternative mechanism. PAH has its own site, which many classes use, but some don't and those that don't are all over the place. It is what it is. FWIW - I struggled with essentially this for in-person school in High School. The German teacher wrote assignments on a consistent corner of the board and left the notes there till they were due. The math teacher mostly just said them verbally. The chem teacher had them written on the back board when you came in and you were supposed to notice. History handed out a page at the start of each unit that had all the assignments listed on it for the unit. some wanted them placed in the basket as you walk in, some handed in on request. <shrug>. I think you just have to adapt. I find this kind of organization challenging, but it's not going away.
  2. yeah....that aligns with most discussion I've seen on the topic, which mostly seems like bunk. 'legally binding'...really? If it is, then a contract you sign would specify exactly what happens if you break it, not just that you're not supposed ta. "We'll tell your school counselor and you'll get in trouble?" ok. I'm the school counselor, so....<shrug> It sounds like the schools colluding and a non-ED school then deciding to stop processing your application even though you didn't withdraw it is the only actually real consequence. And that might happen. Or maybe the threat of that happening is the only real deterrent. By the end of application season, older DS was getting offers in the mail that read roughly as 'blink once for yes you'll come to our uni, and twice for maybe you'll come to our uni", and then post-starting college gets letters in the mail that read like "disappointed in the place you picked? Not too late to come <here> starting now". To be clear...we've setup an on site for NWern, and assuming he's still excited for their program 4-6 weeks from now he'll probably apply ED and would do so expecting to attend if admitted. But the empty threat of 'you must' seems sketchy to me.
  3. I would agree with this. There is, imo, tremendous value in an actual person with whom you can ask questions and have an interactive discussion. FWIW, I also think there is value in having an actual human who can give feedback on format, clarity, and process...even if you totally get the math. Math at this level is a language not just a set of axioms. When you solve a problem you are communicating a sequence of ideas, and understanding conventions and clarity for how to communicate that in a manner that other humans (including you-two-weeks-from-now) will understand takes practice and feedback. I will also add that these books are HARD. Not knowing how to solve some of the review, and especially the challenge, problems is just part of the deal. From my own education and practice, and having taught it twice, I think I'm pretty comfy with the topics in AoPS IntAlg. And yet, there are some problems I will be unable to solve. I look at the answer and think "oh. I see how you did that...and yes, that works. But I would _never have thought of that on my own'. I would not take this to mean, necessarily, that he's missing something or not understanding the material. They are, on purpose, hard problems and I wouldn't expect someone to just get them all. He'd probably still benefit from a human to work with, though.
  4. just for understanding....what happens if you don't? What happens if you don't withdraw your application from other institutions if you get admitted someplace ED? What happens if you don't attend?
  5. which suggests that a generally qualified candidate is actually more likely to get in if they apply ED? The student in question is above NW's 75th percentile in both ACT score and unweighted core-gpa. The question DS is asking is if he should apply ED to Northwestern (which he'd be totally excited to attend) because it maximizes his chances of getting in even though sucess would mean punting on Stanford (which he thinks is pretty unlikely). If the odds of admittance aren't any better, then there's no reason to do that. If they are better, he'll probably go that way to reduce the chances of not getting into either. Which I think he would find pretty disappointing.
  6. DS is very interested in Northwestern. I think he'd prefer that over anything else, excepting Stanford which seems like a long-shot. Northwestern's ED acceptance rate is reportedly 25% vs 7% overall. Several of the competitive universities seem to have a similar trend where ED rates are higher. Is that just because the ED students are stronger than the general population, or is there an edge given to ED applicants because you've indicated a commitment to the institution? Put another way, is the same competitive applicant more likely to get in if applying ED vs regular decision at competitive institutions? DS's ACT scores and GPA are above the 75th percentile of reported admitted students, but I'm sure there are plenty of similar-looking-on-paper students who still don't get in.
  7. We’ll….crud. Just heard back from the small ‘independent learning school’ where we’ve taken our AP tests for years that they don’t expect to be allowing outside students to take AP exams this year. The public schools here have been consistently unhelpful always in this regard, and I don’t expect it to be better this year. I’ll start the phone calling marathon tomorrow, I suppose. at lears we’re only looking for 2 this year, and they’re fairly common.
  8. DS took CV honors chem 2 years ago. Not self graded, but I assume the materials are the same. 100% (200% even) recommend it. Connie is a rock star at explanation and motivation. I will caution, at least the honors class is very legit. It is a material amount of work. It's not billed as an AP class and doesn't follow the AP plan exactly, but based on DS's experience it's about as in-depth.
  9. I will happily take the win. But I won't hold my breath that the people who are harassing minimum wage retail workers over their employeer's mask policy are likely to be swayed by anything. (true story. happened to our son 4 weeks ago. they entered and announced "we're unmasked and unvaxed. and not leaving the store", recorded it and doxxed the employees in their youtube channel.)
  10. agreed. no impact at all. People will just come up with a different bogus reason not to get vaccinated. If you don't trust authorities or experts on a subject, you don't trust the process they create and endorse. I'm glad it's approved because that will allow some institutions to require it. And I think they should. Yes, you're free to not get vaccinated. And you're free to then also just stay in your home.
  11. this all raises a general question. Suggestions to provide only a single grade / class and include test scores on the transcript seems like great suggestions - you do want to highlight all the important bits in a single, easy to see manner. OTOH, standard public school transcripts have semester grades and don't include test scores...right? On the one hand, there's no real reason to be constrained by the public schools do. I wasn't for class planning or teaching, after all. OTOH, admin offices see a bazillion applications and transcripts. Maybe they'd rather have everything in a standard, expected format?
  12. @8filltheheartthat linked example is showing as 'unavailable'. I can kinda infer it from the screen shot from @daijobu, but if you are will to repost I'd love to look at it.
  13. English was at home (except the DE this year). Math was AoPS (taught by me) up till this year - LinAlg and MVCalc is at the local CC. Everything else was outsourced (German from OKState, Chem from CloverValley, Physics, CompSciA, Econ, APUSH were through PAH).
  14. thanks for the input. I'll try that and see how it looks. He got a 36 on the ACT. It'd be nice to highlight that. I've not seen a lot of test scores on transcripts, though. I'll look around for some formatting.
  15. such as? I could move Econ in to 'electives' and make 'social sciences' be just 'history'. That seems a bit better.
  16. thanks. So, this is where we're at (I went ahead and pulled the math and German classes from pre-9th. That seems like a very reasonable prospective)
  17. I'm wondering if anyone has advice on some transcript questions I'm hitting, as I'm putting this together for DS's common app. He's planning on a STEM major (probably Chem or ChemE) and targeting selective schools (Stanford, Northwestern, CMU, Michigan, UW, Chicago. no UCs) 1) would you including 'non-core' classes in the transcript. He has 6 or 7 credits / year from core classes (English, foreign language, math, science, social science). Currently, everything else is an activity. Will the target schools care that there's no PE class or art classes? competitive swimming & theatre + voice I'm currently listing as activities. 2) include math and foreign language from before 9th grade? How far back to go? Does anyone care, or would they assume that if he took PreCalc in 9th he probably took Geometry and Algebra II before that, so I shouldn't bother? 3) reporting weighted vs unweighted GPA? If weighted, which classes to give the bump for? Just AP & DE? Honors Chem and PreCalc also? Does the answer change if unweighted GPA has been trending down slightly (4.0 freshman year, 3.86 last year) but weighted is steady at ~4.3? 4) assign 1/2 or 1 credit for each of Physics C Mechanics and E&M (and this year for MacroEcon and MicroEcon)? I think he has 'enough' credits either way. Many of the local HS's seem to treat each of the Physics' as full-year classes, but I don't want to just pad the number of credits since I don't think he needs that. thanks in advance for any feedback!
  18. depending on your intended major, that may be great or useless. I just looked up the current requirements for my major at my alma mater, and engineering majors do not take a physical science GE, nor would the non-calc physics count for the physics req. OTOH, if you did have a physical sciences GE, then you could get the 8 credits w/ just the 1 physics class. <shrug>
  19. Is DS planning on taking Calculus in HS? If so, is it worth waiting to take the C version of Physics which is more likely to count for college credit? My DS took AP Physics C Mechanics & E&M w Kernion through PAH last year. I'd second the impressions of him as a teacher. The course is well structured, etc. It seems like the calculus based version isn't especially more work than the algebra version, and then you've had the level of class that's necessary for stem. It's been decades...but back when I was in HS (when dirt was new) I had an algebra-based physics class and later a calculus version. The latter was both more in-depth and considerably easier to understand. At the time, I didn't feel like having been through the first course made much difference in ability to take on the calculus-version.
  20. unexpected results this year. 4 on APUSH and Chem 5 on Physics Mech and E&M based on practice tests, expected a solid 5 on Chem, 4 on E&M, and would have happily taken the 3 on APUSH. <shrug>
  21. DS completed his freshman year last year as a MT student. loved it. the shows had maybe a smaller cast and they staged everything to minimize physical contact. everyone wore masks. there was no audience. It was live streamed, and honestly the sound quality was fairly poor. Most performances were done in a gym, which didn't help. He also joined the 'competitive choir' and that was great, too. They all had 'singing masks'. They stick way out from your face and make you look like a duck, but they did stay on while the kids were singing. Rehearsals and performances (no audience) were done with the kids spaced pretty far apart. IIRC, rehearsals were 30 minutes, then vacate the building for 20 while the ac cycles through, then back in. Some were held outside. The sports teams all had various quarantine problems and COVID cases, but as I understand it no transmission was linked to choir or theatre. <shrug> Current plan for next year is the normal set of performances - both 'main stage' and student run. The college is requiring everyone (students, faculty, staff) to be vaccinated. Interestingly, I hear from DS that the voice instructors found it easier to teach students who were wearing masks. Something about feedback when learning 'where to place your voice'. Which sounds weird, but I know nothing about the mechanics of singing.
  22. He took them back to back….and is signed up for Connie’s OChem this year (he’s super excited about it). CloverValley Honors Chem was work. Maybe 10 / week, and some very focused studying for days before midterms and the final. AP Chem was pretty light. He watched maybe 1/2 the video lectures and tended to do the HW the night before it was due, and ended up with >99% in the class. it was totally a review class. Which was fine - it was a stressful year and he also took both PhysicsC APs this year. But he probably could have skipped the class and just taken the AP exam after the clover valley course.
  23. DS took Moskaluk's AP Chem at PAH this past year. He liked it. It went well. practice tests suggest a 5. That said....it was not difficult. He took the class Connie (CloverValley) is now calling 'Advanced Honors Chem' the year before, and said it covered more and in more depth. AP was basically a review.
  24. https://www.amazon.jobs/en/teams/internships-for-students is the primary page. also https://www.amazon.jobs/en/business_categories/student-programs. As a CS major, she'd probably be looking for a Software Development Engineer internship. If she can't find the application process, DM me and I'll help get it sorted out. It's a pretty great experience, IMO. They're assigned to a team that owns something in Amazon/AWS, have a specific project to work on, a mentor assigned, and there's usually a number of fun interns-activities scheduled. I've worked with many, and by the end of their summer they've designed and implemented a thing or feature, shipped it, and some customer is using it....which is pretty exciting as a young engineer. Note that all big-tech will have something similar, so you might as well take a look at all of them.
  25. when selecting a college for an engineering program, you might ask which companies recruit there. Or, if there's a target job/company, you might ask them if they recruit there. re: pay increase for an MS or PhD...._right now_ (and frankly right now is a bit of a weird time for hiring engineers as the market is super hot) at big tech. I can't say anything about how this compares to startups or smaller tech companies, or locations outside the US. - a new BS(EE|CS|CSE|etc) gets hired as an L4 at Amazon or L3 at Google. Most get promoted 1 level in 2-3 years. - a new MS(EE|CS|CSE|etc) usually gets hired as an L4 at Amazon or L3 at Google, at essentially the say pay as the BS, but they generally get promoted in a year. There are rare exceptions if you've done your MS in something directly relevant to where you're getting hired and you had a hands-on enough graduate degree. - a new PhD igenerally get hired as an L5 Amazon, L4 google. so, in comparison to what you'd get (say) 5 years post your BS, this is probably lower and of course you took on debt rather than getting paid over those 5 years. Yes, it's more than what a new grad BS gets by probably 1.5-2x, but the new grad probably got raises amounting to that or more over the same time period. OTOH, the fraction of Principal Engineers that have an MS or PhD is much higher than the general population. Note that most people do not ever get promoted to Principle, however. If it matters, levels.fyi appears to be fairly accurate for compensation at levels where there are enough datapoints to be meaningful.
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