99 votes
Accepted

Is it rude to ask the lecturer whether there is any “effective prerequisite”?

I wouldn't phrase it in terms of "effective prerequisites". But it's certainly fine to discuss with the professor whether you are adequately prepared. You could visit their office hours, or send an ...
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72 votes

My professor is not teaching his online course himself, but uses publicly available videos instead. Is this appropriate?

If your instructor is available for questions, comments and discussions, then you can learn a great deal this way, potentially. I recommend that you try to do just that. If, after at least ten days ...
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  • 38.5k
59 votes
Accepted

Can I learn the course material for the first time while I'm teaching it?

. . . the first time I was in a statistics course, I was there to teach it. - John Tukey In my experience, it's definitely better to learn about it beforehand. If you are really pressed for time, ...
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  • 3,300
57 votes
Accepted

How can I deal with students who try to steer a course (in the online setting)?

The game is: you listen, but then, you decide. Just because students don't like something, you do not have to do what they ask. Check whether what they say has merit, if so, you can promise to change ...
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48 votes
Accepted

Is it common to have exam questions 'peer reviewed'?

Yes; as mentioned in the UK it is expected that assignments (usually those greater than a certain proportion of the overall mark) is both internally checked and externally checked before being sat by ...
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45 votes

Best day of the week to hold an exam?

I'm an undergrad, and I do have a preference, so I will answer based on the information you have given in the question. But note that there are many other external factors, such as your students' ...
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  • 1,224
43 votes

My professor is not teaching his online course himself, but uses publicly available videos instead. Is this appropriate?

Your question is stated as "is it an issue". In this form I believe the right answer is "no, there are no issues". In some fundamental subjects like calculus or linear algebra I don't even expect for ...
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  • 2,866
41 votes

How does the college course 101 numbering system work?

A common system works roughly as Najib Idrissi describes: courses numbered 100-199 are first-year courses, which either have no prerequisites or only high school-level prerequisites. Courses numbered ...
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  • 2,876
38 votes

Why does a university course become defunct?

Some reasons we've eliminated courses in my department: The professor who created the course is no longer at the college or is no longer interested in the material. College-wide requirements have ...
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34 votes

Is it rude to ask the lecturer whether there is any “effective prerequisite”?

Think about this from the lecturer's point of view. If you are the lecturer, would you rather: Have a student email you about what the prerequisites are and whether she meets them, or Have a student ...
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  • 102k
32 votes

Is it common to have exam questions 'peer reviewed'?

This seems to be very dependent on location. I think it is a good idea, but in the US, at least, it seems to be very uncommon. Lecturers might need to have exams looked at by a more senior faculty ...
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  • 258k
31 votes
Accepted

Should I include non-English textbooks in the course?

I think you can distinguish between required and optional materials For required materials (students will be expected to read regularly, have exams on the content, solve exercises from the book, etc),...
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28 votes

Can I learn the course material for the first time while I'm teaching it?

TL;DR: You owe your students to familiarize yourself well enough with the subject matter before teaching it. Should I have full understanding of the subject before I teach them or can I learn about ...
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  • 37.2k
27 votes

Can I learn the course material for the first time while I'm teaching it?

A real scholar is a lifelong student. But you should know the material that you are teaching sufficiently broad (like you won't be caught ignorant of some relevant factoids) and sufficiently deep (...
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25 votes

Course development: can I pay someone to make slides for the course?

Theoretically you can, but practically I doubt you will find someone qualified who is willing to do it for a reasonable price. Designing a course is hard work and pretty individualized. Look at how ...
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  • 103k
24 votes
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What does one call a group of similar courses where only one can be taken for credit?

A couple of universities that I've worked and/or studied that described the courses as having equivalent content. So, the prerequisites for an upper-level course might be listed as "MATH 344 or ...
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  • 19k
20 votes

My professor is not teaching his online course himself, but uses publicly available videos instead. Is this appropriate?

What you've described sounds like a very standard online class. The only thing missing is some kind of method for direct communication with the professor. Usually this would be accomplished through ...
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  • 967
17 votes

Best day of the week to hold an exam?

For my experience, the biggest factor that students will care about is what days do they have exams in their other classes. If the students have two exams the same day, they won't be able to properly ...
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  • 4,527
16 votes

How does the college course 101 numbering system work?

The numbering system isn't nearly that consistent across American universities. "Subject 101" isn't really the introductory course in Subject at most schools. Based on my experiences on a few ...
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  • 19.9k
16 votes

Why lab sessions are handled by TAs?

I think your question extends beyond programming-related courses and also applies to virtually any course with a significant hands-on laboratory component (think chemistry labs, biology labs, physics ...
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  • 702
15 votes

What does one call a group of similar courses where only one can be taken for credit?

I think anti-requisites might be a good choice, since it would fit with other necessary concepts in the context (pre-requisites and co-requisites). Moreover, it seems to me to have a reasonably ...
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  • 15.7k
13 votes

What unforeseen dangers might exist when choosing an open access textbook for a new subject?

It's important to check the license used by the author to make sure that it's compatible with your use of the open access textbook. Issues to check include: Does the license allows you to ...
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13 votes
Accepted

What do the abbreviations 2:2, 2:1, or 3:2:3 mean in terms of teaching loads?

They refer to the number of classes you teach in each semester. ie 2:1 would mean two classes one semester and one the other. Three numbers (like 3:2:3) refer to the number of classes in each quarter ...
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  • 15.7k
13 votes

How to implement flipped classroom for 18 year olds?

The underlying idea of a flipped classroom is that you use face to face time for things that require it and nothing else. You don't "present" or "cover" material when face to face. This requires a ...
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  • 258k
13 votes

Is it common to have exam questions 'peer reviewed'?

Very common in my experience. just to note I am in Switzerland... And even if it is not prescribed by the university, common sense does seem to get most of my colleagues in the past to ask one to "...
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  • 27.9k
12 votes

Is it rude to ask the lecturer whether there is any “effective prerequisite”?

Its worth noting that some universities attempt to automatically enforce pre-requisites either by machine or by administrative review at the time of enrollment. Some professors may not want formal ...
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11 votes

Does the course number matter?

Anyone who cares what these courses are will know what a Special Topics course is, i.e. that it's a course placeholder in the scheduling and reservation system for courses that may be taught ...
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11 votes

How does the college course 101 numbering system work?

When people in the U.S. talk about a generic introductory course, say "Underwater Basket Weaving 101", we often give it the number 101. This is just a linguistic shorthand; introductory courses are ...
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11 votes
Accepted

My professor is not teaching his online course himself, but uses publicly available videos instead. Is this appropriate?

My personal opinion, which is nothing more than that, is that yes, this professor's behavior is possibly inappropriate. Flipped classrooms can be a wonderful thing, but then instructors can hold ...
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  • 10.1k

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