Well, I survived – barely – my first full semester of teaching online;* and I’ve jumped into my second. Will it be the last? My colleagues certainly hope so, with “I can’t wait to get back in the classroom” beginning to be the most distinctive vocalization of Homo professorius. And you don’t have to look far to find media articles condemning online teaching: it’s lazy, it’s short-changing students, it’s unfair, it reduces learning to watching YouTube.
What if all that is wrong? Continue reading
I’ve just finished the 3rd go-around of my Scientific Writing course. When I first signed up to teach it, I was very scared, but now that I’ve been through it a few times, I’m quite pleased with how it worked out.
After the first offering, I posted my syllabus and other materials, and quite a few folks found that useful. But I’ve polished and improved the course, so today I’m posting an updated set. I’m also including some notes about adapting the course to online delivery – something I had involuntary experience with this year, as most of us did! Continue reading
Image: via Pixabay CC0 1.0
The lecture has had a rough ride lately. It’s widely derided as outmoded and ineffective. It’s held up as unfair to students and as the work of lazy instructors. In the most recent defence of the lecture to make the rounds*, Molly Worthen even withdraws to a corner of the battlefield, willing to concede the uselessness of the lecture in the sciences even as she argues that it has a role to play in the humanities. Instead of lecturing, we’re told, we should be running group discussions, facilitating problem-based learning, asking students to think-pair-share, and (recently in vogue) flipping the classroom. Actually, I think all those things are good ideas. But the dismissal of instructors who give lecture waltzes right past a really important point about students who experience lectures. Continue reading