My Second Year BSE Fall Experience in the Engineering Sequence and Reflection

After attending my final class of the semester, the feeling that I was done with my BSE requirements finally settled in. From now on, as a COS BSE major, I would have much more flexibility in my class options with my prerequisites complete. Having written both My BSE Fall Semester Experience in the Engineering Sequence and My BSE Spring Semester Experience in the Engineering Sequence (which I recommend you read first before reading this), I wanted to write a final article to reflect on my experience now that I’ve officially completed the Engineering Sequence. To reiterate one last time, the Engineering Sequence is a set of five courses intended to fulfill the engineering degree requirements through an introduction to engineering fundamentals in the context of real-world applications. BSE degree requirements include four semesters of math, two semesters of physics, one semester of chemistry, and every first-year student is required to take one semester of writing seminar and fulfill various distribution requirements for general degree requirements. This semester, I took the final course in the Engineering Sequence, Multivariable Calculus, which means that along with taking chemistry, I have completed my BSE degree requirements.

screenshot of EGR 156
Course Description of EGR 156 for Fall 2023
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TigerJunction vs ReCal: How I Plan My Courses for the Next Semester

TigerJunction Logo

It’s always a mixed bag of emotions when it comes to course selection. Personally, I find the period between when the next semester’s courses are released and before the course selection date to be especially fun—I can play around with the different ideal schedules (potentially having no-class Fridays and no night classes), look ahead to the rest of the courses that I’ll be taking during my time here, and discover new classes. Whether people end up choosing to take classes to fulfill requirements, classes that interest them, or classes that could teach them important skills, an important aspect in choosing courses for the upcoming semester is course planning. TigerApps is a group of student developers that builds apps to improve the campus life experience for Princeton students. One of the TigerApps created is ReCal, which is the most popular way to aid in course planning and ensure a smooth process for course selection. Recently, TigerJunction ReCal+, an application for course planning inspired by ReCal and designed to be an “improved” version, has made its rounds among students. As course selection season is upon us, I wanted to take the opportunity to show how I plan my courses for the next semester and provide an in-depth comparison between ReCal and TigerJunction ReCal+ to inform how other students plan their courses for the upcoming semesters.

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My Personal Tips for Success in Writing Seminar

Even before stepping foot on campus, I had already heard of the challenges that came with the Writing Seminar, the first-year writing requirement. Students are able to rank by preference several Writing Seminars covering different topics, which have included topics such as WRI 116: Sustainable Futures and WRI 159: Gray Matter. In each of these Writing Seminars, students develop their writing skills through a research focus, writing three research papers throughout the semester. As Writing Seminars are such a widely discussed topic for first-years and there is an abundance of advice from juniors and seniors floating around, I wanted to write a more detailed article specifically about what I did to learn how to write.

flowchart
Picture of the flowchart I created for my R2; tip #3, use whiteboards!
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My BSE Spring Semester Experience in the Engineering Sequence

After having written “My BSE Fall Semester Experience in the Engineering Sequence”, I wanted to continue writing about my experience in the spring semester portion of the sequence; if you haven’t read my first post yet, go read it! To reiterate, the Engineering Sequence is a set of five courses intended to fulfill first-year engineering requirements through an introduction to engineering fundamentals in the context of real-world applications. BSE degree requirements include four semesters of math, two semesters of physics, one semester of chemistry, and every first-year student is required to take one semester of writing seminar. The Engineering Sequence begins at the Integral Calculus (Calculus II) and the Physics Mechanics level, meaning that it will cover for the two required semesters of physics and the four semesters of math in five courses throughout three semesters. Read on to learn more about the spring sequence!

  1. EGR 153: Foundations of Engineering: Electricity, Magnetics, and Photonics
screenshot from course page. Link to course description in subheading.
Course Description of EGR 153 for Spring 2023
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My BSE Fall Semester Experience in the Engineering Sequence

College is daunting. It’s normal for incoming first-years to feel uncertain about many things, especially course selection. I remember looking through every course on the course offerings page to determine the classes I would be taking in the fall, and feeling overwhelmed by the sheer number of options available. I came into Princeton as a prospective COS (Computer Science) BSE student, so my class choices were inevitably influenced by my BSE degree requirements. BSE degree requirements include four semesters of math, two semesters of physics, one semester of chemistry, and every first-year is required to take one semester of writing seminar. Read on to learn about my experiences in the EGR sequence, starting with EGR 151.

  1. EGR 151: Foundations of Engineering: Mechanics, Energy, and Waves
Screenshot depicting course description of EGR 151. Link in caption leads to full version.
Course Description of EGR 151 for Fall 2023
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