Italian University inside – professors

They are particular. Could talk separately about each one of them. Here is a little about them:

Algebra and Geometry. Approximately 70 years old mathematician. Always keeps one hand in the pocket, with the other one destroys 4 blackboards in a minute. Speaks his own dialect, which is a trouble even for locals. The author of a Math student books series with mistakes. Somewhat evil, but could lead a stand-up show easily. He’d better did, frankly. Evil I say, because he constantly makes mistakes when teaching HOW TO resolve problems. I mean, when you know nothing about the subject and a guy like this teaches you, you literally believe in every word he’s saying. Later you discover that half of your copybook is a nonsense mess. The thing is that he performs all the calculus mentally and writes only if the memory can no more. This is what you practically see on the blackboard. At first, students tend to correct him, but pretty soon he beats the shit out of them. Once he was resolving a matrix where the determinant was supposed to be different from 0. He came up with -5, and one student said it should have been -1. So, he ran through the blackboard from the start, found 3 other mistakes and determinant -1. Some guy said this time it should be -3. He now turned to the classroom and said: “Did you get zero there? No? So what’s the freaking difference?”

He also mistakes the exam marks putting them to wrong names. Some people suddenly pass, others get butthurt. He is the one who makes pauses to discuss the Chinese, Africans, Americans and so on.

Calculus. A woman of 45 or so, a hidden genius and a bizarre troll. The author of several Schrodinger equations solutions. Talks almost clearly and likes creative exam tasks. I looked through examinations history (they take place 4 times a year), and they were absolutely different, even though each exam is designed for 6 hours and has at least 4 variants. Every trial about 2-4 student get lucky. I got lucky on my 5th trial. Why she is a bizarre troll: I had a function study, and it had a minimum with a smaaaaall decline, almost a straight line. I drew it curvy to show somehow that minimum, it was there! After exam at home I ran that function through a computer graph and it showed no minimum even at the maximum zoom. I thought I failed again. But when I looked at my corrected papers and there was a huge “+” above my curvy graph. Thank you.

Physics. A granny about 70 years old, dedicates 90% of the lecture to preachment and 10% to fighting with a lap-top. A member of National Institute of Nuclear Physics. Not sure why. She is pretty vivid, but evades touching the blackboard and only moves her mouth and mouse when lecturing. The two times she did touch the blackboard, I experienced new feelings. The blackboard was already destroyed by the mathematician (see number 1) and needed a good flush with sulfuric acid. But the granny doesn’t care any more. She would take the chalk and draw ON TOP of theorems and drawings… As if not seeing. “Oops, I didn’t notice” behaviour is actually typical for Italians. She is fixated on making up own symbols and definitions which you must learn.

As an example, on my oral exam she asked me to explain Pendulum. I have drawn it inclined to the right, with all arrows and forces, and set up the equation. She said no, “You inverted ALL signs. Think again and come up later”. I sneaked into Wikipedia – anyway she was doing the “oops, I didn’t notice” thing, and made sure I was right. Wasn’t able to convince her anyway. One student approached to me after and said she made him fail in the same way last year. The solution was to learn HER exclusive slides, where the pendulum is inclined to the left, so all signs in the equation actually are inverted. It doesn’t matter if you were granted a “+” for calculus.

Chemistry. Probably one of the best lecturers, a brilliant communicator aged 50. His lectures are attended even by extraneous people. His exams are not attended even by his students. They all postpone Chemistry to death to the last, because nobody is able to learn this amount in one semester. For compensation I guess, he frequently shows pictures of “The Simpsons” and explains it’s math jokes and philosophy. (Like this).

Analytical Mechanics. I attended only the first lecture, but anyway. The professor is approximately 45, he has numerous publications in mechanics of elastic and rubber-like materials. He is also made of them. In the whole semester he didn’t find the time to publish his own subject program. Me and many others sent him lots of e-mails asking for more information about exam, about any kind of program. In the end of the course he responded with a huge block of A4 paper with all lectures written by his delicate hand (Yay!). Students scanned it and uploaded on Facebook. I printed everything and spent several days decoding and highlighting whatever was readable. Sometime after students uploaded a better scan, now readable! I looked at it, the same stuff… which he bolded with a darker pen. Twenty first century, guys.

So. I think it all depends on Allah. No other explanation on my mind. Study better, guys… But seriously, how hard are you?


Университет в Италии изнутри – учебный процесс

Об этом стоит поговорить с двух сторон: учебный процесс и преподаватели. Сначала о первом.

Отличий в учебном процессе хватает. Это 30-бальная шкала оценок, CFU, отсутствие понятия учебы семинара, расписание, тьюторы. Расписание для иностранца понятно: это просто таблица, которую ты неминуемо получишь перед семестром в электронном виде. Все остальное придется добывать.

CFU – это баллы, которые назначены на каждый предмет, предполагающие сложность. Чаще всего это 6 или 12, и кратно трем. За год обучения положено набрать 60 CFU. Один и тот же предмет на разных специальностях имеет разную сложность. Например иностранный язык у меня был 0 CFU. “Физика 1” – 6, “Физика 2” – 12. То есть “физика 2” вдвое сложнее и объемнее, чем первая. Официально. В реальности сложность оказалась в другом: На 12 CFU преподаватель дает тебе на 6 на 1, а спрашивает на 12 на 24. И на 6 преподаватель даст тебе 1, а спросит 10. После первых экзаменов ты четко ощущаешь, что заработал.

30-бальная шкала сложна примерно тем же – ей оперируют люди. Обычно “уд” – это 18, который дает право участвовать в устном экзамене, некоторые преподаватели допускают и с 14-15 баллами. На устном можно “оспорить” и подтянуть оценку хоть до 30 (демократия!). Я пока не видел ни одного студента, который бы рискнул подтянуть – обычно натягивают их. Экзамен может быть сдан и поэтапно, за каждую часть тебе поставят оценку в 30-бальной шкале 18, а потом выведут среднюю арифметическую.

Теперь о семинаре. Их нет и не будет: вместо этого преподаватель объявляет часы приема по тупым вопросам, обычно пара часов  в неделю; где-нибудь в своем кабинете, который ты с трудом найдешь. Найдешь ты его либо по виднеющейся очереди, либо по закрытой двери. Но это относится ко второй стороне вопроса, о которой далее:)

Итак, вы бросили затею догонять препода, но возможно обнаружите что есть некие тьюторы – это такие старшекурсники или PhD, которые авторизованы помогать по предмету начинающим.  Я попробовал такую помощь по химии, после чего не стал сдавать экзамен. Я конечно не особенно одарён, именно поэтому тьютору удалось запутать мне мозг за каких-то 3 урока, после которых я перестал понимать уже понятое. Может снова постоять в очереди к преподу?

А в целом это все только об одном – будет трудно. Искать и понимать информацию придется наедине с собой, не поможет никто. Можно было бы просто написать “трудно” и закончить на этом статью про университет. Но ты ведь не поверишь!:) Ты и сейчас не веришь. Это упорство тебе тут пригодится…