Thursday, December 18, 2008

Topic: Teaching Across the Curriculum

10-second review: Project in which college teachers observed college teachers in many subjects and summarized each teacher’s style and the effects of that style on the students.

Title: “Cross-Curricular Underlife: A Collaborative Report on Ways with Academic Words.” Worth Anderson, et al. College Composition and Communication (February 1990), 11-36. A publication of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

Summary: Among the observers’ notes: Confusing textbook. Students’ lack of interest in the content. No personal relationship with the teacher. Lectures. Professor talks too fast; can’t take notes. Professor reads passages from the text. No concern for students even when the class was small. The back of the room is “uncontrolled.” Skipped over detail that instructor knew but the students didn’t. (Classes included anthropology, Common Medicines, Intellectual Traditions of the West, and chemistry.)

Comment: Insights into what happens in college teachers’ classrooms. Too bad students can’t collect their insights into a guide for instructors on what works and doesn’t work in teaching at the college level. RayS.

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