I thought the same thing. It is incredibly frustrating -- even more so to be consistently failing every class every semester until final grades come out, only to find that I ended up having a very high grade. They intentionally do not tell you where you stand -- I could have very easily failed, and had to operate under the assumption that if I didn't do flawlessly on the next exam, I'd fail. Seriously, unbelievably stressful.
At one point during one of my pure math courses, the professor said: "this part of the semester is always sad, because there are always students who are unable to comprehend working in these dimensions, and it forces them to acknowledge that they are not as intelligent as their peers."
There are also courses that you can only take if you apply (resume and cover letter both required). The instructor then interviews you and checks references. I got into one of them, but something like 200 apply and 15 are chosen. The class was very interesting and was essentially designed to connect us with high level Wall Street execs, but it was still a huge turn off.