Last year I wrote a few things about my experience of being a professor taking an undergraduate language course. This year I am taking the next level course of this language, with the same instructor and most of the same students, all women. The class meets 5 times per week, and a few times each semester we get together for social events, so by this time we all know each other fairly well. It is a harmonious group and we all feel comfortable speaking out in class, making mistakes, correcting each other, and asking a lot of stupid questions. [editorial opinion of a professor-student: yes, there are such things as stupid questions]
It is lucky for me that the other students are so nice, as the instructor persists in holding me up as an example of a 'model student'. If this were a less nice group of people, I would be loathed. Last year the instructor told the class that she was basing the class grading curve on my quiz scores because they were the highest in the class -- that is, she assigned each of my quizzes a grade of 100% and calculated the other grades based on that. It was therefore in the interests of the other students that I get more answers wrong. I felt that if I did really well on a quiz, I was harming my fellow students, and that's a terrible feeling.
I do not think it is very good professorial practice on the part of the instructor, but it must be strange for her to have a senior professor in her class of undergraduates.
Yesterday the instructor held up my homework assignments as the example of the way she wants them done. I know what it's like to grade a pile of disorganized or messy homework, and I do have that in mind as I do my homework. Even so, I would have preferred it if the instructor just described how she wanted the assignments done rather than using me as an example.
Aside from being embarrassing, the incident yesterday made me think about how being a teacher might help me to be a better student and how being a student now might help me to be a better teacher. That said, I really wish I didn't have a quiz tomorrow.
12 years ago