Sunday, February 19, 2012

Differences in what you study

Throughout my university experience, I have been repeatedly asked "what's your major?". I have also asked this question many times when I meet new people. My major is History and Asian American Studies (ASA). I remembered one time someone asked me if ASA was easy since I'm Asian. I have thought about this question and the answer that I keep going back to is that ASA was harder than History.

I felt that I understood the readings for my history courses more easily than the reading for my ASA courses. The concepts that I learned in ASA were mostly new, whereas I was more exposed and knowledgeable about history terms and concepts. I didn't have previous exposure to ASA terms and/or concepts in my previous education. In addition, I found myself more likely to not understand the readings from my ASA courses than my history courses.

I also thought of something else. I haven't ever been asked if United States history was easy for me. I lived in the United States my whole life and have been exposed to the history in so many ways. I learned about United States history through the History channel, books, discussions, and throughout my classes ever since I was in elementary school. That said, the history that I have learned have been very specific to a certain criteria and people of the United States. I'm glad that I have taken classes of interest during university to know more about a history that I was taught not previously taught. It also makes me want to know more histories of other backgrounds that I have little to no understanding of, which includes Canadian history, Russian history, and many more.

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