(I came here in the course of searching for something to help me learn the Python computer language so I can set some "interesting" assignment to my class .. but thanks!)
There are some assumptions here:
1) The "reputation" of the instructor. From where? Fraternities? Alums of schools that graduated people regardless of accomplishment? I am yet to find a good source for "Teacher's Reputation" that actually makes sense. If your gasoline pump operator used that to measure how much gas you bought, you would have them arrested. So why are universities so bad at this fundamental metric? Their alums' record of success in being happy 20 years down the line would be good, but how can one get that?
2) The Teacher is a boss who sets out Expectations for grades rather than a Teacher of what one comes there to learn.
I know of a teacher whose grading was almost "bi-modal". A or F. Well, not quite, but he would indeed fail most of the class if they did not solve the problems on the test. Yes, that sometimes hit 75% or more. But never 100%, but only because a few WOULD get it right. Which is a very scary thought because of the nature of the field. Would you like to have your appendix taken out by a doctor who, well.. could get that right 53% of the time? 23.55% of the time?
3) "Communicate Expectations". That term is the real Red Flag about #rainier's initial post. Teachers are not supposed to be programming robots, we are supposed to be educating the minds of intelligent, thoughtful, enthusiastic humans. When you are given a set of notes to learn, (and yes, you are Expected to go find some old tests, let me tell you that), what part of that Expectation is unclear? Why should you expect reward for incomplete/sloppy work (not that many teachesr won't give you that)? Yes, I see that rainier says the subject is "subjective", and that does make it harder. Experience is the way out, dear rainier and the best way I know to get experience is to work hard at it. (As a Senior in grad school told me: Ya gotta sit in this chair until yore backside has the shape of the chair!) Would you understand the Expectations until you had learned enough to understand the questions? How can you understand the question if you haven't thought enough about the subject? Isn't that the real problem here?
As a teacher, my "Expectation" is that you solve 90 percent of the problem(s) set to you to get an A, 80% to get a B etc, and at least 55% to get a D. That should be evident to any student from the syllabus, which I do communicate, but if you are in college and don't yet know that, there is something a bit wrong with your college and high school and middle school. If the scheme is far different from that (like, Only One A or None At All Will Be Given, a system under which I have studied..), OK, you need to be informed. Usually the "Communicate Expectations" term means: "Did not write on the board the questions and the answers for the upcoming test so that I could copy them down, memorize them, get them on my "cheat sheet" and copy them down onto the test because that's all I had to do in my high school where the teachers were terrified of my parents".
How many bosses in any interesting profession "convey expectations" beyond a very general level, I wonder? If they have to tell their employees how to draw every line or type every key, then why hire them, over my graduates who will know how to do their own thinking, and figure out what is the best way to do what makes sense? Why pay for college grads at all? The best compliments I have heard are (from the employer): "We are thinking of retiring because your alum has taken over everything we do!" NOT "your alum needs to be told EXACTLY what to do every day, every hour".
Oh, and by the way, if you haven't figured it out yet. I am a Very Bad Teacher. Most of the 5% to 10% of my class who, despite my very best efforts to wake them up, don't even drop the course, and manage to fail, would agree with that - and they do very loudly and shrilly on the Internet. I am "disorganized" though I put out a clear Syllabus before the semester begins, and do everything mostly better than any other teacher. The 50% (or so, it varies) who EARN their As in my classes are too busy to be sitting on the Internet commenting on the teacher, but in the past (xx >>10) years I have encountered many after they became productive alumni, and at least, they still grin at me. What they are thinking then is a different question :) (my own evil grin). What I DO know is how ANGRY they are when they graduate, seeing how in many classes, their own very hard work gets exactly the same degree certificate as the poor, sloppy and clueless work of others who hardly did any work, because the Instructor emphasized his/her own popularity at their expense of integrity.
They thank me for doing my job honestly.
Come to think of it, that is the *ONLY** Expectation that MY bosses have ever conveyed to me in all these decades (yeah, there have been a few slimy attempts to get me to change Fs to Ws, but always couched in weasel words best ignored):
"Ya gotta be OBJECTIVE! If you ever lose that, you have NOTHING!" Still rings in my ear. It was the lunchtime answer (the Boss nearly knocked his tray over as he snapped that) to my question as a rookie not-even-academic-faculty teacher: "The Major is not doing his homework, and wants me to give him a C and not bother him. He is heading for an F. Should I do anything about it?" The Boss then marched off, summoned The Major to his office .... and The Major did get a C, because he shaped up and did all his homework, including catching up on the ones he had skipped. Because I was Objective but also sympathetic. I was too terrified to be anything else. I still am.
I will die happy, though maybe poor, that I have given them all my best and excellent education that they paid and trusted me to give them, however little of that the administration may have passed on to me.
But no, I am not going to Convey My Expectations this semester beyond what I already did. I have other uses for the time, and I promised myself many years ago that I will not allow the flunkies to dominate my life, I would spend my time helping the interested, smart students who are 90% of those I am privileged to teach, as long as my health and Bosses will allow me.