Updated: Jun 28
We feel it too. The constant anxiety. The debilitating stress. The inevitable crushing disappointment round after round as your phone lights up to an email notification from the Registrar’s Communications — module registration results are out.
The core module you wanted? Gone. The 3-day work week you painstakingly planned for? Gone. Any hope you had for the upcoming semester? Gone.
In light of these scholarly woes, we’ve prepared a list of ways for how to get over the frustrations of ModReg, as you navigate the five stages of grief.
DENIAL: Sleep more.
At first you think, “this can’t be happening,” as you refresh the page for the hundredth time, hoping for a different result. You think maybe an appeal could work, knowing full well you’re only lying to yourself.
It’s frustrating not getting the modules or timetables we want. Our body goes through a myriad of emotions that we are sometimes incapable of handling. But in the face of bitter truths, there is only one remedy — sleep. Hence, try adopting a regular sleep pattern to get over the pains of ModReg. An added bonus, it will also leave you feeling more refreshed and awake to face your less-than-ideal timetables.
ANGER: Listen to podcasts.
You rant to your friends who are now no longer in the same tutorial group. Expletives are strung together in complex and impressive ways, as you vent your growing anger over ModReg’s cryptic priority-based algorithms.
To calm down, try listening to some podcasts (especially educational ones!!), which also allow you to take in new information. Simply listening to the soothing voices from an audiobook or podcast for an hour a day is sure to get your mind off the pain, while also conditioning your brain for learning in the upcoming semester.
BARGAINING: Distract the brain with progress.
You try to console yourself. You think “maybe I’ll get it in the next round.” Indeed, there is always a next round. Until there isn’t.
To overcome delusional thinking, it is essential to clear your mind by practising self-control and concentration. Try meditating, yoga, or some other form of exercise to recalibrate and get some fresh endorphins in your system.
DEPRESSION: Room makeover
You stare blankly at NUSMods. The multi-coloured boxes taunting you, all five days of the week. Shapes and colours begin to blur together — nothing but ornamentation in a meaningless existence.
In these trying times, it is important to ground ourselves in reality before we reach the depths of nihilism. Doing small, menial, everyday tasks can be incredibly helpful for your self-confidence. Take a day to organise your belongings and study materials to start off the semester, at the very least, on one good note. You may be gripped by paralysing existential angst, but hey, at least your room’s pretty.
ACCEPTANCE: Make a game plan.
This is it. This is your new reality. You take it all in, understanding that there is nothing more you can do, and nothing more you could have done.
While our timetables might fail us, we cannot wallow in self-defeat. Work around your suboptimal schedule, and plan ahead so that you do not overwork yourself, allocating sufficient time for fun and relaxation. Even if you don’t manage to stick to a strictly planned out timetable, training yourself to strategise your time is one step towards getting your life together!
So, what do you do now?
You pick yourself up off the floor. You grab your laptop, and you get yourself in that NUS campus bus, squeezing and hanging on for dear life, ready for anything this semester throws at you.