The Office of Faculty Development

August 2015 Tuesday Tips

25 August 2015:

Today’s tip is “Get to know your students.”

During New Faculty Orientation an accomplished professor from Business told a powerful story of a dedicated instructor who poured hundreds of hours of time into course design, but did not know the name of a single student. Evaluations revealed the students had a disappointing experience in the class despite the extensive planning.

Names are one way we can get to know our students, but there are others, too. Every year, Beloit College publishes their “Mindset List(opens in new window)” detailing the life experiences of incoming students. Here are a few highlights that might help you get to know your students:

  • They have grown up treating Wi-Fi as an entitlement.
  • The therapeutic use of marijuana has always been legal in a growing number of American states.
  • The Lion Kinghas always been on Broadway.
  • Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic have always been members of NATO.

The time we take to get to know a little about our students as a group and as individuals tends to pay off in the form of a more dynamic classroom and a better learning environment for all of our students.