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Uh, yes, UD?

Legitimate!!

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4 Responses to “‘[The University of North Carolina] has bet the ranch on arguing that [lawsuits against it by athletes charging they were cheated of an education are] all about “easy” courses. But do courses with no faculty involvement; no class attendance; no compliance with independent study requirements; high grades awarded by a staffer and in some cases forged grade rolls add up to legitimate courses as opposed to easy courses?’”

  1. dmf Says:

    could (in different circumstances) raise the wider question of academic standards, does anyone (faculty/admin/accreditors) know what/how other people are teaching, does anyone visits classrooms to see what is being offered to students?

  2. David Foster Says:

    I wonder if the concept of ‘implied warranty of merchantability’ might be relevant here:

    http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Warranty+of+merchantability

  3. theprofessor Says:

    After a faculty committee here issued a report about student evaluations that concluded with a giant tantrum about privileged white cisgendered male devils who are automatically rated as the coolest of the cool kids by even the most diverse of the oppressed youth, we are abandoning anything that smacks of a rating. Students will be invited in evaluations to reflect deeply about how the course aided their learning. Chairs, deanlets, deans, provosts, etc are not to use anything negative in these comments against a faculty member. If Jack the student says, “I didn’t learn nuttin’ in this course, and the crack the proffie sells in class is weak,” we are not to draw any conclusions. Since these comments are optional and at the end of the semester, I am sure they will generate an avalanche of thoughtful insights.

    This leads into the Brave New World of peer visits, which have been rarely used by most departments here (as a dept. chair, I was an exception), but are now supposed to become important for probationary tenure-track faculty. The evaluator will take his or her standardized 4-page rubric thingie and check little boxes while observing the class. When it was objected that many of the rows on the rubric thingie don’t apply to many classes, there was murmuring about letting the evaluators pick the rows they felt comfortable about assessing. It is not clear what happens to the tenured faculty, but it appears that as hothouse flowers, we are not to be molested by the chill breeze of a mandated peer visit.

    The most important part of the course teaching evaluation will be the self-evaluation offered by the instructor. We all know that people can be relied on to offer candid, clear-eyed assessments of their own performance, after all.

    The short answer to dmf is that I have had a standing offer to whoever my superiors were (dean/provost when I was a chair, chair now that I am not) to visit any class they want to, any time, and it is something like 24 years since one has. The great majority of tenured faculty here are never visited, and even some probationary faculty are never visited.

  4. Margaret Soltan Says:

    tp: The only serious classroom visits I ever read about happened at UNC Chapel Hill right after the whole Julius Nyang’oro thing broke. But that was about making sure that faculty were actually meeting their classes.. Or that classes actually existed.. It was existential, not evaluative.

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