Podcasting and Cutting Classes
Professors who post their notes online are facing increasingly empty classrooms.
In Stuart Silverstein's More undergrads playing hooky when class notes go online (link via RealTechNews), you'll read about teachers who plan to remove their online notes in order to dissuade students from cutting class.
Afterall, why would students go to their classrooms if the notes are all online, right? Why listen to some lecture when you can simply listen to the podcast?
This tells me that some teachers are just a set of notes/lectures. Give the notes away (whether in the form of a handout, podcast, or web site), and the students forget the teacher exists. Don't distribute the notes, and the students flock to your classroom?
Here are some suggestions (aside from holding pop quizzes):
1. Make attendance part of the grade (i.e., you may not be absent more than X times).
2. Make classroom discussion part of the grade.
3. Assign different students to "take the notes" for those who are absent. It's like taking the minutes of the meeting, so to speak. (Everyone has to do this task; it's part of their grade). The teacher and the classmates will give a grade to the one who wrote the notes.
Please, educators and teachers, don't pull your notes away from the web. There are other ways to get your students back into your classrooms.
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