Thursday, December 15, 2005

Email Mailbag

  1. moonphase

    A student in a class that is under my supervisory umbrella has written to tell me that every other section has already received its grades from the online grade system. Grades are not due for another four days. I have talked to this student before about this class; I reiterated my promise to determine how the grades in this section compare to the grades in other sections of the course.

  2. Planning ahead for next semester, a student who plans to enroll in the course I most closely supervise has written to tell me that he will not be returning to campus until more than a week after the first day of classes. What do I advise? I advise not taking math in the spring. You know who will get in trouble if I tell him it's OK to miss more than a week of classes and then he gets a grade that he's disappointed with? Me.

  3. Last night also brought an email from the mother of one of my students from this semester who is disappointed about the grade. The mother outlines some reasons why her child would benefit from a higher grade. At no point in her argument does she suggest that her child has an excellent knowledge of the subject matter in my course.

  4. Also received last night: a student in a course that I do not supervise is concerned that the grades have not been posted yet (recall: not due yet) and that the instructor has not responded to queries about the grades. Could I intervene?

  5. One of the TAs wants to create a web-based manifesto about his philosophy about teaching and learning. Specifically about mathematics at the university level but allowing for more general content as well. He contemplated starting a blog. I told him that I could not pre-approve any inflammatory content; I outlined how complaints are handled and who in the chain of command he would have to answer to if he made people upset.