Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Does not pandering equal less classes?

This is something I have been considering. The last course I taught consisted of at least 20 students who were not prepaired for college level work. They did not know the basics of academic writing, often did not answer the questions in assignments (if they turned them in at all), and complained when I gave them the opportunity to redo assignments so they would not fail. Out of 22 students, only 2 got an "A", 5 failed, and the rest got C's. There are some who are of the school of thought that if students are failing it is the teachers fault, and there are others of the school of thought that students "earn" their grades.

I believe that I am a tough teacher. I have expectations of students which I clearly spell out in my Faculty expectations, and if a student does not meet these expecations then they will not pass the course. I do not think that my expecations are that high, they must cite their sources, both in disucssion assignments and written assignments, I do not accept late assignments, and I use a grading ruberic to grade papers which I provide to the students. Yet I find time and again that many times student cannot or will not meet these expecations.

I have found that my class offerings from the university I started at have been less and less. I find it hard to believe that there is no correlation between the low grades some students are getting in my class and this occurance. On one hand I wonder if I need to let up on some of my students. However I am hesitant to do so because I do not think it will do them justice in the long run. I also think that if the university lets so many students in who are not ready for college level work without remidial courses to bring them up to speed then it is "unfair" to penalize me with less work. (I have using the "F" word and sounding like one of my little snowflakes!) If my employeer has the word Univeristy in their name and not Community College then they need to hold standards accordingly.

What have others experiences been with this occurance?

1 comment:

Manos said...

Yes. As a general trend, one must pander, whether to students or administration (usually a bit of both), to continue to get contracts.