10 Hardest Courses at Northwestern College

Northwestern College

Do you prefer easy classes or hard classes? Some prefer easy classes because of the low stress levels. You can get an easy A and maintain a good GPA while still being able to go out and have fun. Others prefer hard classes; they like a challenge. Whether you like hard classes or not, if you go to Northwestern College, this article will be very useful in helping you pick out your classes. Here is a list of the 10 hardest courses offered at Northwestern College, so you can either take on the challenge, or avoid these courses completely!

1. ACC 315 – Intermediate Accounting I

Image of a pen and calculator sitting atop a paper with numbers on it.

Accounting deals with a lot of numbers, equations, and formulas. Besides the math, there’s also a lot of terms and definitions to memorize. This course is a study of the development of accounting principles and practices as they apply to financial statements. Emphasis is placed on the development of the theory used in accounting practice. Introduction accounting classes are challenging, so you can expect this intermediate accounting course to be even harder.

2. BIO 340 – Neuroscience

graphic art of a brain with marks highlighting different areas of the brain.

If you don’t like science, or it isn’t your strong suit, then you might want to avoid this course. Neuroscience is a blend of biology, chemistry, and psychology. This class is an introduction to the structure and function of the nervous system, emphasizing neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, neuropharmacology and aspects of neuropathology. Multiple levels will be explored from the molecular and cellular levels through brain and spinal cord networks that contribute to complex behavioral and cognitive function. The most difficult part of studying neuroscience is the sheer volume of information. There are a lot of terms and definition to remember.

3. BUS 304 – Investments

Clip art of a stock market chart.

This class is considered hard because not many people know much about the stock market, trading stocks, or analyzing stock graphs/charts. In this class, models of risk and return are carefully developed to provide a basis for assessing investment opportunities and to enhance our understanding of the role and importance of financial markets. A considerable portion of the course will be devoted to the pricing of derivative securities including options, forward contracts and futures contracts. A lot of research and analysis skills are needed to succeed in an investment class.

4. CHE 321 – Organic Chemistry

Clip art of molecules and compounds.

If you like science, then you might not find this course that bad. But organic chemistry, also known as ‘orgo’, has a reputation of being difficult and time consuming. This course is the study of carbon compounds and their functional groups, including nomenclature, synthesis, reactions, structures, mechanisms and spectroscopic analysis. Prepare yourself for some late nights of studying, studying, and more studying.

5. COM 332 – Advertising Campaigns

Illustration of the different parts of advertising.

The most difficult part of this course is the time commitment and creativity needed to succeed. Any advertising class where you have to create something is time consuming; a lot of time is needed to research and brainstorm, with even more time needed to bring the idea to life. The primary objectives of this course are knowledge integration and skills application. By conceiving, researching, creating, executing, and evaluating a comprehensive advertising communication plan that incorporates research, creative, media, and promotions, students will understand how various components work together to provide a client with a cohesive campaign that communicates their message. Students will give a formal oral presentation to their client that includes a usable campaign and all the creative materials needed to execute the campaign. There are a lot of components to a campaign, which is why this class is a challenge.

6. CSC 351 – Data Structures

Illustration of different data structures in computer science.

Don’t be fooled; just because you know how to use a laptop/computer, doesn’t mean you’ll find computer science easy. This course deals with data structures and their algorithms. Emphasis is given to good data abstraction and efficiency. The data structures covered include arrays, linked lists, trees, graphs and strings. Other topics covered may include design patterns, analysis of algorithms, and complexity classes. Programming is done in an object oriented language. This class is not only difficult because of the math and science aspect of it, but also because it takes time and dedication to master the concepts, theories and application of what you’ve learned. It’s lot of time-consuming hard work, so make sure you have the time for it before signing up!

7. ECO 315 – Intermediate Microeconomics

High Demand and Low Supply analysis concept on a graph with a red push pin.

Microeconomics is more difficult than macroeconomics because it requires at least some minimal understanding of calculus-level mathematical concepts. Since this is an intermediate class, it’s even harder than the introductory class. This course will examine economic theory and methodology with emphasis on the principles of price determination, consumer behavior, market equilibrium, optimality of resource allocation, production and costs, comparison of market structures, and the behavior of firms in nonperfect competition. Not only do you need to be able to analyze a graph, but you’ll have to memorize all the different scenarios that affect and shift things in the economy.

8. MAT 212 – Calculus III

Chalk board with calculus equations and formulas written on it.

Calculus is arguably one of the hardest studies of math, so it’s no surprise it made the list. Even those who are good at math will be challenged by this advanced calculus class. This course is a study of the cylindrical and spherical coordinate systems, vectors in two dimensions and three dimensions, vector valued functions, functions of several variables, multiple integration, and vector calculus. If you find yourself struggling in this class, check out the notes linked in the course title for some extra help!

9. PHY 211SN – Classical Physics I


Physics is the study of how and why the universe behaves the way it does. The most difficult aspect of this course is that it’s a calculus-based physics course. So if you’re bad at math, science, or both, you might want to stay away from this physics class. This course includes the following topics: kinematics, Newtonian mechanics, energy, momentum, gravity, oscillations, and thermodynamics.

10. PSY 360 – Psychopathology

Clip art of human head made of gears.

This is another science-related course, so if science is your weakness, then you might find this class hard. Psychopathology is the scientific study of mental disorders, including efforts to understand their genetic, biological, psychological, and social causes. This course will provide a broad survey of what is considered to be disordered in behavior, emotional expression, and cognition in adults. Emphasis will be placed on a scientific view of psychopathology. The hardest part of this class is the memorization required to know and remember all the different scientific terms and definitions, so if memorization isn’t your learning style, then good luck in this class.

Author: Brittany Junkins

Brittany Junkins is a Business Advertising student at the University of South Florida. She is in the Honors College and the Zimmerman Advertising Program.

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