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5 Things That Happen to Every Science Student

Date:30 May 2018
The duality of a science student
The duality of a science student

As a student at the Faculty of Science & Engineering, you get a very similar experience as every other student - with a few notable differences. As a Physics student, I have decided to list five things that happen to every single science student!



1. People are constantly surprised that you study science

One thing that I’ve learned is that a lot of non-science students seem to think that we are a collection of hermits who don’t know how to talk to people (I’ll have you know that after years of practising, I can keep a conversation going for at least two minutes). Result? Every time you meet somebody and you start talking about your studies, you’ll get the same reaction. “You don’t look like a Physics student!”, “I would never have guessed, aren’t you all socially awkward?”, or “No, you can’t use my cat for science experiments!”. In my case, people are generally just surprised that I managed to get into university in the first place, but the point still stands.

2. As long as you don’t check your grade, you will have passed and not passed the test simultaneously

Sometimes, you gotta love Schrödinger. Unfortunately, eventually you have to check your grade, but those few days of bliss where you don’t know is definitely worth it.

3. It seems like literally everyone in your class is smarter than you

Do you know the internal panic if the professor is explaining something and you feel that he might as well be speaking Klingon, while it looks like everyone else is getting it just fine? If you’re a science student, that’s just a constant state of mind. If you ever wanted to feel smart, a science course is not the place to be. When I enrolled, I felt pretty good about my science and maths skills - a feeling which did not survive the first day. Luckily, I soon realized that everyone experiences that feeling on a regular basis, and it turns out I wasn’t actually that bad at science.

4. You feel a bit too much like the guys from the Big Bang Theory than you would like

Sometimes I think about the jokes my friends and I make, and realise we can be a bit too much like the cast of the Big Bang Theory, just less funny and less brainy. At least we don’t go out wearing eyepatches though.

5. Your course titles literally make you sound like the world's smartest scientist, which of course is not the case

“Yeah, I’m taking nano-scientific quantum physics in molecular fields, it’s not a big deal!” The best way to impress people is to just throw around your course titles and hope they are too intimidated to ask any further questions. But really, while science courses are often pretty interesting, for example, ‘Physics Laboratory 2’ where I managed to send a weather balloon into the upper atmosphere to measure particles from space, I have yet to take the first course that is as cool as its title implies.


Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments! And remember: consume science responsibly.


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