written by christopher wang (peace advisor)
I’ll start by listing some classes that I found to be easygoing, fun to take, and not too difficult with assignments or material. Astronomy C10 with Alex Filippenko is an all-time favorite of many students, as the professor is extremely engaging and presents many resources to help students understand the material. Nutritional Science 10 is also an introductory course and features content similar to Chem 3A and Bio 1A. If you are taking the courses or have taken them, the material should be review. ESPM C11 and 50 are also good introductory courses, focusing on environmental policy. Again, it’s difficult to reconcile personal interest with material, so rather than force yourself to take something you don’t like for an easy grade, try to find something that interests you. It will make doing well in the class a lot simpler and relaxing.
Most classes vary in difficulty from semester to semester. A combination of factors, including professors, GSIs, and course scheduling can make a class harder than its previous iteration. Your best bet to finding an easy class is to use a repository site, such as www.berkeleytime.com. Compare the average grades with classes that you need or want to take and the rating of the professor. If the rating for the class and the professor is high, then it’s unlikely that the class will be as difficult as ones with the inverse results.
Again, there’s no definitive answer as to which classes are easy ones to take to raise GPA. Some people may excel in rote memorization but have difficulty with critical thinking, which would mean adverse results in that course. Rather, do some research on how that class will be taught during the time that you want to take it, and then make an educated decision as to whether or not you think you have the discipline to stick with it. You can even drop it within the first few weeks of school and sign up for another. Just don’t randomly sign up for classes just by looking at their titles, you never know what you might get by doing that.