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Rhyme's Indecision - Help me choose!! [#permalink]
12 Sep 2007, 12:20

Ok ladies,

After days of non stop fretting, I've come to a point where I have to decide on my classes. My hope is that the results make things clearer for me (they wont, but we can pretend). I have about 13 hours to finalize my decision.

First, lets talk about the static element: I'll be taking economics in a case based format and either operations management or competitive strategy, both case courses. I say either because it will depend on which course has availability - but odds are, I'll be able to get one or the other. One important caveat - taking the econ case course is a risk - its a new professor, so no one knows how many hours a week outside of class to expect or how hard he will be. It could be easy, or it could be tough.

Now, lets talk about the dynamic element: Regressions OR Statistics.

Stats: On the one hand, stats is going to be boring, often computational in nature (lots of manual calculations), and not especially fun. I'd probably be in the top 30% of students in this class on day 1 (in terms of knowledge coming in), meaning I'd have comparatively more time for my other courses - a good thing. This is the "safer" choice, albeit the less interesting course.

Regressions is likely to be substantially more 'real world' interesting, and could provide some minimal value in future courses (though I dont intend to focus in analytical finance, so the value add is trivial at best)... but its also going to be a lot harder. (I'd probably be in the bottom 20% of students on day 1). Scary part ? I heard from someone who minored in econometrics that this course was 'very tough'. Plus, its the GSB too, so double the quantitative difficulty.

So here it is:

Do you risk regressions, maybe learn something interesting even though it isnt at all relevant to your career goals or future course loads? Or do you "play it safe", pay $5,000 for a course that you will learn very little in, and take stats, knowing itll be more boring and no more (or less) valuable than regressions?

First of all, is the stats course required? Will you have to take it at some point anyways? And second of all, will you have another opportunity to take the regressions class?

If the stats course is required, I would go ahead and take it as it would allow you to ease into b-school mode. However, if it is not, I would probably take the regressions course since you seem pretty excited about it.

That's just my $.02. Your mileage may vary, of course.

I didn't vote but I'll add my 2 cents. If you got other courses this term that will push you past your limits then go with stats but if your other courses are going to leave you in a position where you can with a little effort find room for extra study then go for Regression. It has been my experience that knowledge never goes waste. What might seem vaguely relevant today could be vital a few years later.

Regression is actually more interesting. I had to take a class for my Masters, and while I did not make an A, I would still take it given a choice I voted regression.

I found out my competitive strategy course could be very demanding, so im going stats... and i found out half of stats is introductions to regressions.... so really i'll only be bored for the first few weeks.

Is it linear regression or non-linear regression? or both?

The s*** hits the fan when its non-linear regression. Personally I found regression to be more useful than general statistics, but with your time demands, I would settle for stats.

And breezing through one class is better than coping with another. (More time to spend with your wife and your pets and eat some Thai food!!)

Computational? Really? We don't compute jack in stats. It's much more about getting how it works than doing a whole lot of calculating. As my prof says, that's what excel is for.

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