Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Elephant Not in the Room

Original Article - student attendance

Isn’t outcome more important?
I really think the outcome should be the emphases and not the attendance.

I am in science and engineer fields and I did not require my students to show-up just for the reason of showing-up. If they can learn what is required what’s the point of restricting them in classes? There are courses that need interactions to demonstrate points. Instructors should do so and integrated the demonstration into the evaluation — if you think there are things to learn, shouldn’t you construct a way to evaluate the learning?

As for the point of accountability, I happen to think this is exactly why we need the accountability standard. Require attendance is a wrong requirement. Like demonstrated in the article, I don’t see how some professors could have given the same grade for the same outcome.

Personally, I do believe if students had follow their reading assignments and catching-up with material, they will actually saving time to come to a well thought lectures. But, of cause, as people pointed out, this is part of the culture — which we have failed in teaching our youth. So. Back to the ethic education — which we can do well only if we are reasonable — we should not feel hurt because students not coming to class. The highest priority is how we help students learn and really show them reasons to come to class instead of insisting that come to class is the thing they have to do.

I woke up on my senior year and decided that there are things that are more important than just go to classes and as long as I didn’t waste my time, I am doing the right thing.

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