Universities give students more work than they can handle

By Farah Bassyouni Sep 25, 2023

Learning can be a thrilling experience. When going to colleges or universities it can be exciting at first to be getting a degree and furthering your education. That is, until the coursework becomes terribly time consuming.

 In my public high school years I loved being able to go to class and learn something new. When I was homeschooled, it was much the same too.

With my feet crashing down on university pavements, I found myself wondering after a month of college had passed, “Why am I even bothering? Why am I going to university?” I was overall depressed, stressed and overwhelmed.

With the workload I had, however, it was not surprising why I hated waking up and going to classes in the first place. I began to research the differences in college experiences, stretching around the world, and I found U.S. colleges gave a lot more work to their students than what is considered reasonable. .

A notable difference I found was in the UK and European countries, where they have a wonderful school-life balance.

An article posted in Insider by Jules Adamska, titled, “How College Academics Differ Between the US and the UK,” shows a completely different approach to college life. The prime source of the article was Adamska herself who stated that while studying in the UK, she had only three classes and a very minimal amount of homework between them. 

“While in the UK, I spent about two hours weekly doing homework. In the US, it takes me two hours for each class. And the worst part is the homework counts toward my final grade. Failing a class because I didn’t do the reading is something I never had to worry about at my home university,” Adamska said.

Which brings me to my other point: quality over quantity. With so much work on a U.S. student’s plate, it’s not uncommon to wonder, “Is there any point to it? Is it actually worth my time? What am I learning?”

On October 2019 an article by Angelica Halas was published in The Loquitur, titled “Overloading students with too much homework takes a toll on their mental health,” where interviewee, Ash Angus, a biology major at the time, felt she had “no time to rest and has been only getting four or five hours of sleep because she’s always up doing homework.” Freelance writer and journalist, Marianne Stenger, found in a study that “only six percent of college students find their homework to be useful in terms of preparation for tests, quizzes and projects,” only justifying the idea of a lack of quality and too much quantity of homework.

In my experience, I found that the best classes I had were the ones who made me think, not the ones who piled on the homework making me wish I didn’t go to a university. Homework can help with learning, that much is clear. But too much homework can be negative on a student—socially, mentally, emotionally, and even physically. The saying, “Too much of a good thing,” has never been more true.

 

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