Lilli writes: An approach to scheduling required courses

At the outset of my pursuit of the ALM in IT degree I allowed myself to be a little intimidated and took a course that I thought would be easy and interesting.  With one course under my belt and the rules of the degree clearly outlined as you must achieve a B+ or better in the 3 courses you complete before applying, I made a plan. 

I don’t come from an IT background so I felt it was most important to complete the required coursework before exploring the electives.  I took the required courses based on on-line availability.  I felt it was critical to my success in the program that I complete the unavoidable required courses first.  I felt liberated upon finishing the first six required courses because I now had the luxury of picking courses that fit my personal interests.

I took three electives before taking the last requirement – the Capstone project – because you had to have completed nine classes before being allowed into that class.  In all I took the following electives:

  1. XML Web Development – my 2nd course with Heitmeyer – interesting stuff
  2. Visualization – Pfister’s energy made this class awesome
  3. Advanced Topics in Data Networking – my 2nd course with Bradner – He is brilliant!
  4. Managerial Accounting – my only summer term course – I highly recommend trying a summer course
  5. Geographical Information Systems – My last class!!!!

I am so glad I completed the requirements first, because I never had to consider not finishing the degree on time because a class wasn’t offered during the term I needed it.  Five years to finish your degree may seem like a long time, but you never know what life will throw at you.  Scheduling in a little wiggle room really worked for me.

One Comment

  1. Sarah T.
    Posted September 14, 2009 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    For better or worse, I took the opposite approach. I wasn’t sure about doing the whole ALM in IT when I started, so I took the personal interest elective courses a la carte. That got me admitted and hooked, but now I’m halfway through with only required courses left!

    The only major constraint I’ve run up against is the Harvard instructor requirement, since almost none of the digital media requirements are also HI courses. It’s definitely a good thing for me that all summer courses count as HI.

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