Friday, November 19, 2010
I took the Midterm Exam for my Chinese class today. I've taken some tough tests in some difficult classes before in college: Differential Equations, Calculus, Thermodynamics...hell I even took a course in Astrophysics (mistakenly thinking it was Astronomy) and today's Chinese Midterm Test definitely ranks up there with being just as difficult as those other classes.
Listening, speaking, reading and writing all in Chinese; no English. I finished it, but felt like I got run over by a bus in the process. I knew it was going to be tough, but I don't think anything could have prepared me for how difficult it was. For me, I'm thinking a grade of somewhere between 50-70 will be extremely good, and this exam is 20% of our final grade in the class!
After the two hour test, I packed up my things to leave, but was surprised to learn that we had to stay for the final third hour of class and "study". So our reward for completing the Midterm Exam, was sitting around the classroom talking with the teacher about "how long you would wait for a friend, if they don't show up to meet you". After 50 excruciating minutes, we were able to leave and go home. In the end, I think it was actually better to talk after the test in Chinese, instead of just going straight home after the demoralizing exam. It somehow difussed the volatile test taking experience, and made the weekend a little easier to slide into.
The biggest thing I learned from today's test, is how much I DON'T know about the Chinese language. What's the saying, "The more you learn, the more you realize how little you know"? Well for me, today is that day in learning Chinese.