Economics, Literature and Scepticism

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I am a PhD student in Economics. I am originally from South Africa and plan to return there after my PhD. I completed my M. Comm in Economics and my MA In Creative Writing (Poetry) at the University of Cape Town, where I worked as a lecturer before starting my PhD.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Teaching

Posted by Simon Halliday | Thursday, May 04, 2006 | Category: |

I had always thought that I would be a good teacher, that I am a good teacher. I have been challenging this recently. Wow! It has been difficult teaching 1200 students, good difficult though. I am learning about my own capabilities. I teach 4 classes a day – the expectation being that on average 300 students will come to each lecture. The variety of the students is fascinating, frustrating and daunting. I have to cover 6 chapters in 4 weeks worth of lectures (15 lectures), this means that I have less than three lectures per chapter. The students don't seem to grasp the gravity of this, at least those who don't understand what is going on. We operate under the assumption that they understand their first year work, as well as the work that they have covered in previous sections, but I keep on coming across gaps in their knowledge that I must bridge in order for them to understand what I am lecturing on, else they will fail. That is not necessarily a bad thing for some of them. It becomes worrying, more and more so. I want them all to pass, but I know that many of them won't. I have to do my best to ensure that they do, but I am fearful of their inability to deal with the pressure. My expectations have been sullied. I know that I can teach well, that I do teach well, but I had not catered to the preferences that are so variable among such a large group of individuals. It is daunting. I deal with it.

Currently have 1 comments:

  1. Simon, you're so angsty. let the little bastards fail, they pay your salary! Let them continue to pay it over and over again :)