I am thoroughly sick and tired of the undergraduate level of university. There needs to be a serious restructuring of the History and Political Science majors, because at this point, it is maddening. Right now, in my third year, I am doing exactly what I did in my second year, and it boils down to nothing more than regurgitating the arguments of others for the sake of a mark. The thin veneer of originality expected from the best essays is at the best of times a joke, and always a complete sham.
I've already thoroughly demonstrated that I can go beyond the course reader and employ independent research skills to access sources and bring them together cohesively. Frankly, nobody should pass the first year if they are incapable of doing that. It really isn't asking much to be able to do research beyond your course reader by visiting the university libraries or using online databases. If you are even vaguely computer literate and can't use JSTOR, you could probably be outsmarted by a donkey. Personally, I'm the guy who writes 2,000 word essays with 30 unique sources and feels my research is still inadequate. Furthermore, I have beyond adequately shown that I am capable of formulating an argument, placing it within a broader context on the topic, and coherently proceeding to sustain my argument throughout a piece of work with all necessary references to evidence that supports my assertions. Again, you shouldn't be able to pass the first year if you can't do this.
So why am I still sitting here in my third year doing this? Why am I churning out drivel with no purpose beyond getting some mark that assesses a narrow set of skills I have already demonstrated I possess and can use to a high standard? I'm not being challenged. Accordingly, my work is suffering. I don't care about what I'm doing, I've done it before. Oh, sure, the specific subject area may be a bit different, but change the key terms and you'll have every other bloody essay I've ever written. I'm not acquiring any new skills here, I'm not being tested; I'm just writing complete junk for no good reason.
I want to at least do something that challenges me. Something that requires me to gain new skills. Something where I have to produce work that is genuinely original. Something that I don't just hand in for a mark and say "thank fuck that's done". As it stands, this third year is a farce and a complete waste of my time and energy. I'm sincerely afraid I'm going to receive terrible marks because I just don't care.
I'm going mad. Certain people may get very carefully phrased e-mails full of measured frustration if this doesn't improve. I don't know what I'm doing here. I'm wasting my time. I want to move on already. I'm starting to have flashbacks to how frustratingly mindnumbing and intellectually unfulfilling high school was, and that cannot be a good sign.