Wednesday, April 9, 2008

EDITED: How Does This Make Any Sense?

After reading the Hatchet article on What's in a class name?, which spoke about how teachers name their different classes to be more ambiguous or even sometimes more vamped up because
"Unfortunately (class names) are all kids have to go off most of the time," Leighton said.
The article was interesting to see that professors have no other option than the web to describe their classes, but then the article ended with this
David Grier, dean of academic programs in the Elliott School of International Affairs, called a class he is currently teaching "Obscure and difficult readings in international affairs" as a way to dissuade students from signing on.

"To keep numbers down, I scheduled it at the end of the day on Friday and gave it an unappealing name," he wrote in an e-mail. "Even this didn't do much good. I have 11 students in it."
Why would a teacher NOT want students to take their class?? And why would they want to lie to students about the class in the first place??

This got me pretty peeved, mainly because students should be able to be informed about a class on University Bulletin, and not just take it because of the title.

CCAS recently just e-mailed me asking to take a survey on the GCR's in Columbian and if I get a wide range of options for taking classes I am interested in because they want to make a change. Well how is a student supposed to take a class they are interested in, if the only thing they are getting is the course title??

GW needs to step up it's game when it comes to giving descriptions of the classes in the University Bulletin if they are really are so called concerned about the student body taking classes they will enjoy.

Disclaimer: I e-mailed Professor Grier and he stated
Thank you for your email. The naming of the course
is a bit more subtle than the Hatchet suggested. The course
was proposed by a group of students. I originally said I
couldn't teach it because I had to fulfill my contract with
other courses. When they pressed further, I agreed to do it
as an unpaid overload, a course beyond my standard load.
Because I am associate dean, I don't have a lot of open time
blocks in my schedule. Friday afternoon was about the only
free period that I had.

Guess the Hatchet didn't get it right AGAIN.


James said...

lol, that's awesome. I assume so he can do his independent research without having to deal with students.

GWBlogSpotAdmin said...

Xavier -- what say you?