10 Hardest Classes at Purchase College

Finding new classes to take can be a difficult task but it doesn't have to be! Read this post to learn about some of the hardest offered at Purchase College. From here, you can decide whether you’re up for the challenge or if you want to keep looking for other options.

1. ANT 2755 - Global Sexualities

The symbols for the female and male genders

Sexuality is always a hard topic to talk about because of the stigma behind it. This course aims to reduce the stigma by discussing the ways that sexuality and gender are practiced, experience, and even regulated in different places around the world. More specifically, students will discuss how sexual identities influence and are influenced by political, economic, and cultural norms.

2. PHY 1530 - The Physics of Sound and Light

Light refracting through a prism

Sound and light are something we rely on every day, yet many of us don't know the science behind them. This course aims to inform students on the physics behind the two phenomena. Students will explore light and sound through vibration, wave motion, and Galileo, Newton, and Huygens experiments.

3. MAT 1510 - Calculus II

Some of the important topics in calculus with the word calculus in the middle

Many college students struggle with calculus, and this course is no exception! Students will continue to develop their knowledge in calculus based on the information taught in Calculus I. Some of the topics covered include differentiation, logarithmic integration, exponential function, infinite series, improper integrals, and more.

4. LAC 3000 - Syntax and Semantics

An icon of a person speaking, with cogs in the brain and lines representing audio

As much as we use words, no one really thinks about how they're formed and how they're used. In this class, students will learn about syntax and its relationship to meaning. Students will also learn about the basic principles and parameters that rule language.

5. BIO 3530 - Cell Biology

A cartoon of cells

This course is required for all biology majors. Students will learn about cellular organization, cellular function, molecular genetics, and eukaryotic cells. Some of the more specific topics include cell genomes, DNA, RNA, protein synthesis, processing, and more. In addition, students will have to write a paper based on current literature in the biology field.

6. PHY 1520 - Introductory Physics II

An electric circuit

PHY 1520 is a continuation of PHY 1510 (Introductory Physics I) and just because it's an introductory class doesn't mean it's easy! Students will use the ideas they learned in the first course of the sequence to further their knowledge in the physics field. Some of the topics covered include electricity, magnetism, electromagnetic waves, optics, and more.

7. CHE 4610 - Biochemistry

A Petri dish with some liquid in it

This course combines two of the hardest STEM fields: biology and chemistry. Students will learn about the structure, function, and metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. In addition, the course covers molecular biology; the structure, regulation, and kinetics of enzymes; and the structure and function of vitamins.

8. MAT 1540 - Computer Science II

Some computer programming on a screen

MAT 1540 combines programming in Python and Java with some of the important topics within the field. Some of these other topics include data representation, algorithms, recursion, Boolean logic, and data structures. In addition, students will discuss some of the social, legal, and ethical issues that are related to computers in todays world.

9. CHE 3320 - Organic Chemistry II

Chemistry structures

This course is a continuation of CHE 3310 (Organic Chemistry I). Students will study more complex organic reactions to learn about multistep synthesis problems. Students will also study aromatics, carbonyl, and carboxyl compounds to discuss their reactivity and structures.

10. MAT 3430 - Number Theory

The Fibonacci Sequence seen in a triangle

This course introduces students to number theory, an important subject within the mathematics field. Some of the topics covered include prime numbers, the Fibonacci sequence, Pascal's triangle, print decomposition, the Pell equation, Phi functions, modulus equations, cryptography, and more. Students will also be required to programming code to better understand these topics.

By reading this post, you've taken the first step to learning about what kind of courses are available to you at Purchase. Now, you can avoid classes that you think are too difficult for you. Keep this guide in mind as you pick your classes for next semester!


Katelyn Heuer

Hi, I'm a sophomore majoring in computer science and minoring in mathematics. My interests include music, reading, and fashion!


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