Demotivation in schooling

Mar 23, 2015 • Simon Fraser

Going to university was a very demotivational experience in my education.

I studied Maths, Physics and Chemistry at A-level (17-18 years old, for non-UK people), and did well. However, there was a large disconnect between what A-level covered and what the university course was expecting me to know.

For example, having done basic electronics and circuits, my first lecture on arriving at university started with a circuit diagram that took up the entire blackboard, and we were expected to know what it did as a basis to understanding the rest of that track. My tutor was unavailable for meetings, there were no mentors and no other forms of assistance. In fact, I first met my tutor at the end of my first year, and only twice more before I graduated. The department did not care about how well its undergraduates were doing.

Having a tutor or mentor available for orientation would have helped a great deal, even just to provide a basic anchor or work plan in the new material so that I could spend a few weeks or months getting up to the place the course required. Some preparatory work could also have been indicated so that I could have started earlier.