All throughout DLSU, there has been both over and underestimation on the difficulty of degrees in the Gokongwei College of Engineering. Many have triumphed against the odds, undaunted, unscathed, boasting their victory over the insurmountable odds that most perceived as beyond their abilities. Others return battered, beaten, and broken, never to return to the gauntlet, which they have bravely undertaken.
Do not be daunted, however. Engineering, no matter the exaggeration of its complexity, is not an epic. It is not a trial by fire, a beast to be slain, or a battle of astronomic proportions. It is, like many other degrees offered in DLSU, both a hurdle and an opportunity for the future we are building for ourselves. It is fraught with much difficulty. Yet, like every course in the university, the hardship can be overcome.
Now, The Menagerie sets its sights on the Gokongwei College of Engineering, seeking the hardest of what engineering has to offer from those who have tasted its bittersweet embrace.
Carla Dela Cruz, a graduate of Chemical Engineering, says that the toughest course she has ever gone through chemical engineering has been PHYPRN1 (Physical Principles). “This is a really broad subject which combines chemistry, physics, thermodynamics, electrochemistry, inorganic chemistry and flow of fluids. This is basically one of the foundations you need to be able to survive the chemical engineering life,” she says. She continues that the subject requires understanding the physical and chemical properties of everything, how each molecule reacts with one another, and how they behave under certain conditions. One thing that helped her get through the hard course was getting help from higher batches. “They gave out past quizzes to study, old notes, or sometimes tutorials,” she adds.
In Mechanical Engineering, Juan Benito, a graduate of ME, pushed himself to survive MEVIBEN (Vibrations Engineering). “I had trouble with it because there were a lot of formulas and constants that I had to memorize. [It is] hard to derive the formulas when you forget them,” he laments, expressing the sheer difficulty in this ME Major. He pushed himself hard to memorize every equation and concept.
Nowadays, most find that the struggle is real with MENGECO (Engineering Economy). The subject can seem easy at the beginning, but professors can turn out to be more vicious than the theoretical discussions themselves. James, who is on his fifth year, says, “The lecture is easy to understand but the long examinations is very far from what the professor had taught during discussions and it was not even taught on how to solve the problems in the exam.”
If you haven’t got the hang of circuits, REFRENG could have you holding on to a thin thread. Another course, COMBUST, is “pure thermodynamics of engines.” As a student enumerates, “It’s like we need to compute how much fuel and air [is] needed for an engine, and computing for the amount of exhaust gas it will produce.” He adds, “The hardest part for me is to compute for the amount of each component of the exhaust gas.”
The computer case
Those under Computer Engineering have to endure the trials and tribulations of MPROSYS (Microprocessor Systems). Rom, one of the students who have encountered the subject, says that he couldn’t understand anything more often than not. But, like Carla, Rom’s technique involved the assistance of higher batches. In order to decipher what seemed to him like Aesopian language, he suggests observing how quizzes were formerly executed. Eventually, you’ll nab yourself a breakthrough and a gratifying score for the finals.
In a civil manner
It is no surprise that one of the majors in Civil Engineering, CIVELEN, is one of the more condemned subjects. Ton (II) states that being weak on circuits can make it difficult to level with the class even more. Patrick (II) says that “it was hard because the prof’s grading system [could get you either] a 20 out of 20 or 0 or 1.” In spite of the difficulty, Patrick shares, “Since [the professor] is fickle about the manner one solves the question, I practiced solving how he solves.”
An industrial revolution
Among numerous tricky subjects in Industrial Engineering, IE graduate Jenny claims that Operation Research 1 is the one to watch out for. She warns that the professors give “really difficult exam questions.” Undergraduates Kyle and Blaze agree on how QUAMET, another one of their majors, also serves as a baffling experience. Kyle states that it is “hard to analyze,” whereas Blaze shares that, “mahirap ang mga tests.”
For Electronics Engineering, ELCIAN1 and COCIFUN dominate as the most challenging subjects, topping numerous laboratory subjects. One BSECE student states that it’s all in the “depth of subject matter.” Like most courses, all-nighters and perseverance would be the outright solution.
Kenn, a graduate of Manufacturing Engineering, declares that LBYMREQ (Artificial Intelligence in Manufacturing Engineering) would be the kryptonite for those who haven’t mastered the art of programming, as professors expect you to have already acquired the skills. Starting at ground zero for Kenn meant that he had to rely on group efforts, although hard work is definitely a factor. Dus (MEM-MRE, IV) recommends that you “allocate time for studying,” commending YouTube videos for assistance. He mentions these as he tells tales once upon a term of MEMAnalog and MEMDigital.
Steven (BSCE, II), along with engineering students, would say that they have not grown quite fond of ENGPHY2. On the other hand, for most Mechanical Engineering students, ENGSTAT obliges the students to memorize tedious equations.
Other general subjects that engineering students often pin on as difficult include DIFFCAL, INTECAL, and ELENPRI.
Trying to stay afloat
Apart from what most engineering students fear, some would contend that even floating subjects such as HUMALIT could be really difficult. A Mechanical Engineering sophomore says he finds the subject irrelevant to his career as a Mechanical Engineer. “By having no interest in the subject, it certainly makes it hard for me to take the lectures seriously and I see it as a seemingly difficult subject.” ENGLRES also makes it to the list, where, as Chris (MECH ENG, III) states, “Even the smallest details are noticed by [the professor].”
It is inevitable to cross paths with professors that would compel you to want to make a run for it. In the end, it doesn’t matter which degree of engineering you take, study groups are a foolproof norm. But studying on your own can be a good thing too. Just don’t forget – however you’d want to approach your studies – to match your prayers with consistency, determination, and perseverance.