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"Piled Higher and Deeper" by Jorge Cham www.phdcomics.com

“Piled Higher and Deeper” by Jorge Cham http://www.phdcomics.com

 

It’s syllabus-writing season! Here’s an exercise I devised several years ago that I’m still using to promote students’ active thinking about course policies — and faculty understanding of how students perceive course requirements and regulations. The article explaining my exercise was published in the Atlantic Universities’ Teaching Showcase Proceedings 2010, pages 55-59.

The abstract follows, and a link to the full article is given below.

Abstract
“Think Like A Professor!: Student and Faculty Perceptions of Course Policies”

The “Think Like a Professor!” exercise is designed to enliven introductory classes while presenting course policies and regulations to students. The exercise pulls students out of their passive role as receptacles of course information, puts them in the instructor’s place, and asks them to apply the instructor’s course policies in various scenarios based on real incidents. The exercise accomplishes several goals, including establishing appropriate modes of interaction among students, asking students to read and extract information, requiring students to apply, analyze, and synthesize facts and ideas, giving students insight into how their actions are perceived by faculty and others, and giving faculty feedback on their regulations and a view of student attitudes and values. Students are encouraged to see that course policies and regulations have a purpose that is applicable to both students and instructors.

Think Like a Professor! Student & Faculty Perceptions of Course Policies [pdf]