Monday, December 5, 2016

monday

Open forum

13 comments:

  1. There was a little lass
    Who had a little class
    Of freshpersons who meet in the morning,
    And when they are good, they are very, very good
    And when the immature, pre-frat-bro gentlemen in the back can't keep it together, they are horrid

    With apologies to Longfellow, but, you guys, a couple of them were throwing little pieces of paper at each other in class the other day. In college. My Ph.D. did not cover this kind of classroom management.

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    Replies
    1. I've had spitballs thrown at me, but the students were junior-high-aged (and English, at a supposedly very selective, civilized girls school. They were pretty awful. See earlier discussion about 11-13-year old girls.)

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    2. What a shame you can't respond with a good, swift, solid smack in the head. Don't hurt your hand.

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  2. Maybe the paper was a confetti substitute and they were celebrating their marriage?

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  3. I need to have a come-to-Jesus talk with my graduate student who has been funded by my federal grants for over two years and is showing no signs of writing a paper. I'he had it up to HERE because this student is actively resisting guidance, even to the point of telling me that a comparison with previous results would not be "logically accepted." I want to tell it straight: I've learned a few things about how to do science in over 15 years of professional practice, and oh yeah, stop wasting taxpayer money or I'll make you TA for the rest of your Ph.D. What with the murders at USC and UCLA I'm afraid to do it. I don't think this student would turn violent but I understand that grad school is stressful, sometimes the stress is not visible to the adviser, and the student may be resisting verifying calculations and writing up because he or she is subconsciously scared of publishing. Yet the compassionate approach hasn't worked in the past. I'm at a loss.

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    1. I am not wise in the ways of grant-funded science, but is there any way to phrase the deadline in a way that's more "we need to meet this deadline, or we'll be forced to change our current arrangement -- i.e. the student will become a TA rather than an RA" rather than "I'm laying down the law"? I can see major arguments against doing that (after all, you are the boss, and the person responsible for fulfilling the promises with which you got the grant, and it's perfectly reasonable to demand work by a certain deadline), but it might get around the dynamics you fear might produce an explosion (which, yes, is unlikely, but it also does happen, as we've been reminded lately, sadly).

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    2. I like the idea of setting a deadline based on the grant administration. Perhaps I can say that the program officer wants to see a published paper by the time I turn in my annual report. It's probably not a lie--all program officers want to see published papers. Thanks for the tip.

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  4. I've taught APA documentation for a final research paper for 6 weeks in a sophomore level major class.

    Just got a rough draft with ZERO citations, ZERO sources, and a 80% score (bad!) from Turnitin.com. This is a major who's been through an intro course that also teaches documentation.

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  5. My student loan payments are more than my monthly salary. I dread telling people what I do for a living, because then I have to explain that I am an adjunct. I'm stuck--and may forever be stuck--teaching composition. I have severe ADD and never finished the Ph.D., so am utterly useless. FML X 6.

    Still, two students came to see me at office hours today. They brought with them essays that truly impressed me. We had lovely conversations. For 45 minutes, it was worth it. :)

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    Replies
    1. So many like Potter. Shame on our profession.

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  6. So help me, RGM, if you don't stop nagging us to produce more content, or that hits are down, I am going to resort to that old tried-and-true standby, taunting humanities proffies! It never fails to get a rise out of them!

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    Replies
    1. Who are you going to taunt. There's nobody here.

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    2. I hear you, Frod. A number of folks have written to me to say they like the open forums because it's a place for short bits of misery that can't be turned in to full posts. But you are not alone in your thoughts.

      The "stat porn" postings are an old trope of the site, and so I asked Cal to make me the recent graphic.

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