Because I have a lot going on today, and because I committed to daily posting in November, Wiser Time is pleased to present this flashback from seminary days (which have been over for about six months now).
We occasionally had professors tell us that the recommended amount of reading to be assigned for a class was 1000 pages per credit hour– i.e. a class like Gospels should have 3000 pages of reading. This was usually said in the context of “yeah, you have a lot of reading to do, but be glad I didn’t assign you the recommended amount,” which was somehow supposed to make us feel better. Don’t get me wrong, I rarely thought we were being worked too hard. I just didn’t like the implication that we were getting a cakewalk and it shouldn’t be any problem to get everything done.
Anyhoo, I finally heard this speech one too many times and set myself to a little ‘rithmetic, probably during a lecture that I felt was keeping me from the 992 pages per credit hour I needed to read that week. Other people in grad school can probably appreciate it.
- 1,000 pages / credit hour x 15 credit hours = 15,000 pages
- 15,000 pages over a 15-week semester = 1,000 pages/wk
- 1,000 pages over a 6-day week = 167 pages a day (our professors would generally frown upon schoolwork on Sunday)
- 167 pages a day (six days a week) at 1 page a minute (which is pretty good) = 2 hrs 47 min a day of reading.
Skipping 10 days over the course of the semester (the occasional Saturday, busy days where you can’t read for 3 hours, days you work on a paper, sick, sick kid, etc) adds another 20 minutes a day to the regular days. So really you have to read just over 3 hours a day. Just reading. Not sitting in class, working on papers, studying notes, taking quizzes and tests. Not eating, talking to spouse, playing with kids, church stuff, personal devotions, physical exercise, social activity.
So yes, we are glad they didn’t give us 1000 pages per credit hour, the mystical “standard” that never actually existed. And if you got bored by the pacifism post yesterday, just be glad I don’t do 7 theologically-oriented posts a day. Somehow I’m sure that makes you feel better.