179

If you want a non-confrontation approach, simply repeat the question in English before answering it. Hearing the translation may help the student in question see how to phrase their questions in English. It also give a polite hint that the question should have been asked in English.


156

Is it reasonable for them to ask me to teach everything from scratch because they couldn't attend the class? No, it's not. If a student wants to engage in extra-curricular activities during lecture hours, they had better be able to keep up with the course material independently.


128

Reasons why I do not use textbooks: Most textbooks in my experience are bad. Most students do not read them (probably because they are bad). They are expensive. They do not align with how I want to teach the course. I can provide the relevant subset of content myself. I can't see a reason to use a textbook in my courses other than for supplemental ...


126

Could I get some suggestion on how do I manage in such time? Is it normal for a early-age academia? No, this is common for academics of any age. Anonymous evaluations are notoriously a valve for students to express their dissatisfaction without having to be reflective, fair, or even truthful about it. If you ask for anonymous feedback, you will need to be ...


107

This is a subjective question, but common reasons I have heard (and reasons I would have) include: Fear of students editing records to manipulate what you said Fear of having a mistake you made taken out of context and spread widely Concern that it encourages students to not pay as close of attention Concern that students will not feel they need to attend ...


93

Have you considered recording your lectures? Doing so and giving free access to your students allows them maximum agency in trading off attending lectures with other social/academic activities, and obviates the concern of having to repeat yourself -- simply refer students to the video/audio and move on. (Moreover, personally, I've been through courses ...


86

It depends on the type of mistake. All mistakes must get fixed to make sure the students don't learn anything wrong. However, how to best fix the mistake depends on the situation. If it is a small mistake that can be fixed easily (e.g. a missing minus sign) I would recommend bringing it up on the spot. The 'cost' to the teacher and impact on the lecture is ...


83

Opinion, of course, but I think it is fine. It is often quoted in fact. While your students probably still think of themselves as immortal, they almost certainly aren't. No one should really take offense at basic biological certainties. It is, in fact, a corrective on much illogical thinking, which is why it has lasted.


71

I think the best way to deal with this as an instructor is to set the tone right from the first day. Make it clear you want an interactive class room, and that includes the students asking questions and even challenging you as well as having the students answer your questions. Make sure your questions are worth answering. No one wants to answer an obvious ...


67

I have a different view on such feedback and here is how I deal with it. First of all, the anonymous comments are a great feedback and they are generally true. Second, students, especially younger ones, are pretty bad at wording their thoughts on paper. They tend to exaggerate, be offensive or aggressive, focus on seemingly irrelevant things, draw wrong ...


66

The answer may depend on what type of course we are talking about, here I'll focus on STEM. The most obvious answer would be "because it would be a false assumption". Many students don't read the books. But then you get to the question: why don't the students read the books? I'm an engineering student, and here's my perspective: in STEM courses it's quite ...


60

My suggestion is that you either let it go, if everyone understands what the student has said, or that you explore the situation with the student during office hours. Perhaps it is just easier for this student to say subtle things as needed in his/her native language than in English. It is fine if you make an explicit request, but be prepared to yield if the ...


59

One more to NMJD's list: privacy of other students. Enrollment and participation in a class is FERPA-protected in the United States. Students may share comments or information that they do not want shared outside the classroom. For example, a religious student may share doubts about their faith or LGBT status. A student may not want others to know that ...


55

I have observed a class which was taught alternately by two different instructors. One of the instructors (G) almost always immediately got interaction and involvement from many members of the class. The other instructor (B) would often be faced with silence. Same students, same time of day, similar subject material, very different behaviour. I think the ...


53

In the examples you gave, one stood out as maybe actually useful; I hope to use it as an example for my suggested approach: You do not teach what is in the book. Plus, you ask very difficult questions in the test. What do you want to prove? This isn't the most well-constructed feedback, and certainly isn't polite, but I think there is a useful criticism ...


53

Do not assume that facing the audience is actually better. It depends on the type of content. For example, if you are explaining a diagram (detailed hydraulic system for instance), you want the audience to concentrate on that, not the presenter. The audience is still getting plenty of stimulation by having a live human voice along with visual content. ...


51

As a British person, I don't understand why you'd even consider that this quote might be inappropriate. If you feel that it's a good way to get your message across, there's no reason not to use it. However, if you're uncomfortable with it, for whatever reason, don't use it.


46

I am assuming that learning how to discuss statistics in English is not specifically part of the course syllabus. If it is, you should simply tell the student to speak English. If the students' questions are otherwise good, assume the best - that the student simply does not feel confident asking in English. I have had similar situations in courses before. ...


43

Regardless of any perceived advantages of textbooks, they usually have many disadvantages for the student. By some decision-making process, your professor has decided that no combination of textbooks has enough advantages to outweigh the disadvantages. They're expensive. They take a kitchen sink approach to have a wider market. They're difficult to read. ...


38

It may work very differently depending on the group size, their skills and engagement. My only experience (when it comes to lecturing, not - giving a talk) is with teaching gifted high-school students, for other cases (less skilled or less motivated students, or stricter plan) it may not hold. Never assume that students follow you, just because they are ...


36

The way I learned how to lecture was just drawing on things other professors did that were beneficial to me. If you are going to get a PhD however, teaching will be secondary. The focus on the program you go in will be teaching you how to conduct research and write papers for publications. That being said the best way to improve, in my opinion, is to ...


36

Unless you put a lot of thought into your lectures, it's hard to adopt the mindset of a student who knows much less than you. You may take certain concepts for granted, and you've long forgotten how you learned them, or what originally confused you. At the time you learned them you were probably much more well-prepared than the average student, so common ...


36

As a student who has experienced a flipped learning method and especially one which was done horribly, I'll throw my two cents in. The way the flipped classroom was executed at my school was to have the students read an interactive textbook online before classes (this course was finance 1) and come to class to do some practice problems. The strategy that my ...


32

Absolutely, a person who's not naturally inclined to be a speaker can become a good lecturer and scientist. One of my best professors, actually, was a person with such inclinations. Finding that speaking was not something that he was good at, he turned it into an object of study and began collecting heuristics about what made a good and effective talk. By ...


31

Inertia/tradition accounts for many things. "Doing things they way they've always been done" [sic] is usually considered defensible, too. Also, people have already-existing mental models for what a lecture should be like, often including specifics about the subject matter. The fact that information is available on-line is not wildly different from the fact ...


30

Is it reasonable for them to ask me to teach everything from scratch because they couldn't attend the class? In most cases, the answer is NO. Furthermore, it would be good if you can find official university policy on this issue, stating something like that students should not participate in too many extra-curricular activities unless they are also able to ...


30

Would preaching at a church help you to become a better lecturer? Almost certainly, as would any similar experience. During the later stages of my PhD I worked in a very popular small museum giving tours and answering questions from the public. I always tell my students that it was the best way for me to hone my speaking abilities: I really learned how to ...


29

Here are some ideas from Linda Kober, author of a publication by the National Research Council's Board on Science Education, Reaching Students: What Research Says About Effective Instruction in Undergraduate Science and Engineering. This comes from Chapter 6, "Overcoming Challenges", in the section "Helping Students Embrace New Ways of Learning and Teaching":...


28

I want to leave an answer that points in a different direction. You are a math graduate student (your profile says you are studying analytic number theory). Your teaching assignment provides you with an opportunity to improve your own understanding of a basic and important area of mathematics. I'd like to recommend that you take that opportunity and allow ...


28

You know your professor better than we do, but I have only experienced professors who were thankful when their mistakes were pointed out (also by TAs). It's not bad etiquette: it helps everyone involved to learn something new. you point out the mistake in a friendly and factual manner, so they can save their face. Everyone makes mistakes and can err, ...


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