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How to sink your ship while torpedoing another


goldendesign
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A professor in a course I am taking for my masters program is being an ass. I'm too old and not a push over kid with no real world experience. So when some ego driven Prof is being a dick, he finds out I know how to hit back. Without going into too much detail he demands 3k word essays/research papers plus bi-weekly online discussions (totaling 1k words each minimum) an yet hasn't graded a single paper in over 6 weeks and the last 8 discussion posts has had the same copy/pate response. I raised this with him asking for feed back in an email and the moron used the imperial we. 

I know the Dean of that college personally, he's a terrific disc golf player, so he is getting an interesting email from me tonight. I'll leave this snippet:

 

Quote

The work, although heavy, is not out of line for a course with a healthy and active engagement of our learning process. This course, unfortunately,  is failing in that regard rather handily. I have not received a grade on a single essay since week 6 (Feb 14th due date).
I am finding it difficult to believe any value in education is being derived here when there is no feedback on the last 6 essays written.  If the objective of this course was for me to spew words into a word processor and subsequently delete them with nothing gained, then it has succeeded beyond all measure. Congratulations, you then have spent my tuition wisely.

I know this professor is still with us, in body if not mind, since I still receive a "grade" and a thoughtful exact-same-phrase for each of my "discussion posts" as that of my classmates. That same response; "solid effort, insert student name" really does inspire the masses.

 

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So what do you want to achieve here?  Get the  course and master's despite the prof's dickness?  Plus let Dean know about 1 of his staff. Unless it's aired in the public media..probably the guy will still be teaching after you leave.   

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5 minutes ago, shootingstar said:

So what do you want to achieve here?  Get the  course and master's despite the prof's dickness?  Plus let Dean know about 1 of his staff. Unless it's aired in the public media..probably the guy will still be teaching after you leave.   

Oh I know it will probably go no where except a slap on the wrist or a minimal chastising. Just kinda prissy about the neglectful nature of the professor. I have expectations after this where I'm asking that things get graded. We're 12 weeks into the semester and haven't had a grade in 6 of them. How are we to even know if we're passing the course? 

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I got my degree in my late 20’s after my time in the military & as a cop.  I got into it with a criminal justice prof who was a career academic & no LE experience. He was spewing some BS that was flat ass wrong.  When he asked how I would like an F I told him if challenging his POV was grounds for an F then do what you gotta do but your still wrong.  He STFU and I didn’t fail.  

I liked the adjunct professors who had real jobs & taught PT.  In fact I took a lot of night classes so I could get these profs.

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19 minutes ago, Zephyr said:

Just because someone has a PhD, doesn't mean they know how to teach.

The sad thing, alot of them may not even like teaching. Research is their true calling. The tenure track forces them into this  hamster wheel. 

The profs. who win awards for teaching excellence...really are very good.

That said, I believe my BIL has gotten some good reviews from his undergrad students. If one meets  BIL, he  is genuinely calm in personality and knows how to lay out a logical picture/argument. I'm not sure if he is humble to students, but as a family member...especially  in ours, because of cross-cultural, mixed up of 2 languages going on, he is humble as a person.  I don't think he likes kids who fool around with their studies/not paying much attention at all and expect to be cossetted.

After all, one is dealing with cocky first year students who were ripping off 90-95% grades in high school, then in lst yr. it's a serious crash course of humble pie to survive.

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53 minutes ago, shootingstar said:

The sad thing, alot of them may not even like teaching. Research is their true calling. The tenure track forces them into this  hamster wheel. 

The profs. who win awards for teaching excellence...really are very good.

That said, I believe my BIL has gotten some good reviews from his undergrad students. If one meets  BIL, he  is genuinely calm in personality and knows how to lay out a logical picture/argument. I'm not sure if he is humble to students, but as a family member...especially  in ours, because of cross-cultural, mixed up of 2 languages going on, he is humble as a person.  I don't think he likes kids who fool around with their studies/not paying much attention at all and expect to be cossetted.

After all, one is dealing with cocky first year students who were ripping off 90-95% grades in high school, then in lst yr. it's a serious crash course of humble pie to survive.

I did them both and very much favored research. Many PhDs never take an education course.

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When I was first discharged from the Navy I lived briefly in the dorms at UCONN before getting married and moving out.  As an adult returning to school I discovered many professors with a lot of experience dealing with students in their teens and early 20's and little experience with the real world.  Later when I returned to college in my 40's I got the impression that things hadn't gotten any better.  I would have hoped that grad students might have gotten some better results but your story just reinforces my early opinion.

This is probably not universally true, but our public education systems could use some improvement.  Students spend a great deal of time and money in college and deserve better than super high school.

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8 hours ago, shootingstar said:

After all, one is dealing with cocky first year students who were ripping off 90-95% grades in high school, then in lst yr. it's a serious crash course of humble pie to survive.

This isn't a fresher course though. I can understand the mentality of "weed out the lazy ones" type of teaching. I don't agree with it but I get it is used as a wake up call. 

But this course is a 5th year course you need a 3.5 GPA or greater to attend and is a mandatory credit for graduation. 

The prerequisites are there, the content is there, the opportunity is there. Despite the fact that there has been no contact from the professor for 2/3 of the semester the students are committed to the work. But when the professor just checks out mid semester its not "boo fucking hoo, maybe he likes research more", it's much more of a slap in the face to the students.

Sorry for this type of class at this level you cannot commiserate with the professor for his lack of professionalism and say it's because teaching is hard. 

 

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10 hours ago, goldendesign said:

yet hasn't graded a single paper in over 6 weeks and the last 8 discussion posts has had the same copy/pate response.

Recycle one of the papers or on-line responses that he probably didn't read (because he gave you a copy/paste response) and see if he notices.

If he does, you can plead that you accidentally submitted/attached a previous one by mistake, and submit the one you've already prepared.

If he doesn't, you can forward the recycled work with his copy/paste response to the dean as written proof that the professor has checked out.  (And include your real essay as proof that you are still holding up your end of the work.)

 

Also, other students are surely noticing what you are.  I would suggest you quietly start talking to others in the class and see if that is true.  If so, then expand your communication to as many of the class as you can.  Organize that at the end of the class, the students en masse write honest reviews regarding the professor's poor performance and warning others to stay away from him and his class.  It would add a nice touch if they all copy/pasted into their reviews the copy/paste response they received from the professor as proof of his laziness.  That, I think, will do more than anything to get the college to take action, and perhaps, get the professor to change his ways even - if only to the time when he feels he's no longer being monitored by the college.

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10 hours ago, goldendesign said:

How are we to even know if we're passing the course? 

Especially after sending that email. :default_sissy-fight-smiley:

I kid, kind of. I assume you trust the Dean to be discrete in his handling of the situation. But you don’t want a be relying on an angry, vindictive professor to pass you in a needed course to graduate. Now, he probably can’t fail you out of spite, but he can make the rest of the class much more miserable for you and your grade. :dontknow:

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10 hours ago, Zephyr said:

Just because someone has a PhD, doesn't mean they know how to teach.

Yep. My neighbor has a PhD in math and is a horrible teacher. She's had entire classes walk out on her en masse. She's been blacklisted from at least 2 colleges. Fortunately she's retired now.

I had one college class where I knew the subject matter very well. I don't know what the guy was teaching, but it had nothing to do with the syllabus. He actively belittled students who asked questions basically saying they were dumb. He and his wife lasted only two semesters at that college.

I was an adjunct instructor for over 10 years at a local college. At first the quality of instructors was very variable. I was given a lesson plan and sent to teach. No orientation or training. Fortunately I had a degree in education plus had been teaching in the US Air Force for a dozen years. Many of the other instructors were at a loss as to how to teach. Finally they started doing instructor evaluations once a semester and other things to bring up the quality of education. They started taking class evaluations seriously.

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