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Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:16 PM

Don't You Know Who I Am? - Professor to students who missed his lecture

Don't You Know Who I Am?

When students failed to show up for a lecture given by Guy Halsall, professor of history at the University of York, you might imagine that he suffered a flicker of self-doubt and that the empty seats bruised the confidence of a sensitive scholar.

Not a bit of it: Professor Halsall berated his students for missing a lecture from "probably the most significant historian of early medieval Europe under the age of 60."

He posted the comments within the university's virtual learning environment, which is used for online contact between students and tutors.

According to York student newspaper Nouse, Professor Halsall responded to an underattended second-year lecture by telling students they were failing to make the most of the "obscene amounts of money" that "mummy and daddy" were paying for their education.

For that money, he said, "you get the chance to hear (probably) the most significant historian of early medieval Europe under the age of 60 anywhere in the world give 16 lectures on his current research."

He added that "people pay said lecturer large sums of money and fly him around the world to talk to their students, or to give keynote lectures at conferences."

However, when students complained about his tone, Professor Halsall apologized for his "unprofessional and offensive" remarks.

"I unreservedly apologize to my students and to my departmental colleagues, who take their teaching extremely seriously and should by no means be tarred with the same brush as me. I am very sorry to have lost their respect," he said.

Halsall said that his outburst had been "born of frustration."

Read more: http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/01/03/professors-tirade-against-students-who-skip-class-draws-attention#ixzz2Gw8OGGz7
Inside Higher Ed

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Reply Don't You Know Who I Am? - Professor to students who missed his lecture (Original post)
Liberal_in_LA Jan 2013 OP
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #1
nykym Jan 2013 #5
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #7
Liberal_in_LA Jan 2013 #10
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #21
Care Acutely Jan 2013 #35
malaise Jan 2013 #14
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #18
boston bean Jan 2013 #19
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #24
boston bean Jan 2013 #26
Drahthaardogs Jan 2013 #33
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #38
woodsprite Jan 2013 #39
unblock Jan 2013 #2
kentauros Jan 2013 #20
Bucky Jan 2013 #25
kentauros Jan 2013 #32
Odin2005 Jan 2013 #3
Ikonoklast Jan 2013 #8
NJCher Jan 2013 #11
closeupready Jan 2013 #17
Bucky Jan 2013 #27
mike_c Jan 2013 #4
MADem Jan 2013 #31
Coyotl Jan 2013 #6
Liberal_in_LA Jan 2013 #9
Manifestor_of_Light Jan 2013 #12
Lydia Leftcoast Jan 2013 #13
Recovered Repug Jan 2013 #15
closeupready Jan 2013 #16
sammytko Jan 2013 #22
Bucky Jan 2013 #23
Straw Man Jan 2013 #28
Capt. Obvious Jan 2013 #29
patrice Jan 2013 #30
Scootaloo Jan 2013 #34
closeupready Jan 2013 #37
alcibiades_mystery Jan 2013 #36

Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:20 PM

1. LOL. I feel ya, man. Ask me all about skipped classes and failing grades

and wasted tuition money. I'm living it with my kid, who thought his time would be better spent sleeping in his dorm room and playing XBox.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:32 PM

5. We made a deal with my daughter when she went off to college

B or better and we will pay for that class, below a B it's yours to pay!
3.4 cum first semester!

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Response to nykym (Reply #5)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:37 PM

7. He's going to have to pay us back.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #7)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:40 PM

10. well, you can't really force him to pay you back.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Reply #10)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:57 PM

21. Well, he knows he needs to make it up, somehow.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #7)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:31 PM

35. Not if those loans are in your name. Kiss it goodbye.

We made the kids take out the loans in their names. Deal was simple - you graduate, we pay. You bomb out, that bill is yours. One child is nearing graduation, the other chose to attend more parties than classes. After a few years of watching her friends complete their degrees, get real jobs and move on with their lives while she is stuck working in shitty food service jobs she's come around and is now headed back to college. If she graduates this time, we plan to surprise her when she completes her education by assuming her loans - but she doesn't know that yet, and she won't until she gets a diploma.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:38 PM

14. Lots of students today prefer text messages to text books

It's beyond painful

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Response to malaise (Reply #14)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:53 PM

18. Yep. Painful is the word.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:53 PM

19. I had the same problem.

My son, felt he was all growned up!

After I got through with telling him what was going to happen and how fast he would really have to grow up if he didn't get things straightened out, well.. we had a bit of a turn around.

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Response to boston bean (Reply #19)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:01 PM

24. They get that taste of freedom--mom and dad hours away! No one cares

if you show up or not, or study! It was a big responsibility and maturity test, and he failed miserably. He is going to have to find some inner motivation and turn it around soon, or else find his own way to pay for school (loans), or drop out and get a job.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #24)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:07 PM

26. had the same issues just this first semester, add in some partying....

He knew, the minute we knew there was trouble brewing, that he wasn't going to attend after the first semester if he didn't turn it around and real quick.

He did, but his GPA will suffer. He ended up with C's. But atleast he didn't fail.

So, he has a reprieve. Of course, he was told he would have to get a job, pay for his own car, car insurance and if he was going to live with us pay some rent and live by our rules. The kid has no idea how good he has it. But just the thought of it, did scare him a bit... But really having to leave the school and face all his high school buddies who were off in college making it, that I think really did the trick, too.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #24)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:17 PM

33. You know a year or two of living at home and going to a Community College

might be exactly what he needs. Some kids need an extra year or two at home to grow up and Community Colleges are a great place to ease into college life. It is also a lot cheaper on Mom and Dad.

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Response to Drahthaardogs (Reply #33)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:39 PM

38. Yes, good idea--and we are looking into that.

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Response to Drahthaardogs (Reply #33)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 04:37 PM

39. We are constantly getting ragged on about our daughter still living at home

while she attends college and the fact that she's not living on campus. We think it's nonsense since we only live 5 min. away from campus, there's bus service from our corner, and we are on campus every day. There are better ways to spend $8K or more per year than shelling it out for room/board. I told her if she WANTED to live on campus - fine, but then she would be on her own for any study abroad, etc. and she'd need to get a part time job to pay for her insurance/car payment and miscellaneous expenses.

IMO, her "job" right now is getting good grades in college so she can prep for her career and meet her major's internship requirements for 3000 hours before she graduates.

I was also getting ragged on by my SIL over xmas because I go down the hill to the bus stop with our 12yo son every morning. Sometimes he's the only kid down there waiting in the dark at 6am, so I go down with him. I told hubby I wouldn't change it for anything. It gives me 20 or so quiet minutes with him just to talk about stuff every morning - music, school, family, etc. - without any interruptions. When it comes to college for him, I hope to be able to offer him the same opportunities as his sister.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:27 PM

2. in my experience, underattendance is a sign of a poor lecturer.

usually an overly dull style and/or failure to add information beyond the already assigned reading.

although fridays and 8am are never good for attendance....

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Response to unblock (Reply #2)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:55 PM

20. There ya go.

He seems rather full of himself, too. The only thing I ever learned from assholes was how to be an asshole as well. My best teachers made me want to learn more, beyond the coursework.

I noticed this part of his "apology" :

"...and to my departmental colleagues, who take their teaching extremely seriously and should by no means be tarred with the same brush as me. I am very sorry to have lost their respect."

Sounds more like the standard apologetic non-apology we know all too well.

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Response to kentauros (Reply #20)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:06 PM

25. No, that doesn't undo the genuine mea culpa in his statement.

He's acknowledging a fact, a hard ugly fact. But then again, as far back as cavemen telling legends to their kids around the fire, educators have had to be entertainers as well and win over their audience. The best of them do that. He didn't, at least not with this one class.

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Response to Bucky (Reply #25)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:17 PM

32. I still interpret it the way I did.

He comes across as an asshole instructor, and his apology was weak at best.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:30 PM

3. This guy has an ego problem.

Anyone who does the "DON'T YOU KNOW WHO I AM?????" stunt is a self-centered dick with a giant ego.

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Response to Odin2005 (Reply #3)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:38 PM

8. Agree. If you have to go there, you aren't anyone.

If I have to tell you how smart and famous I am because no one knows how smart and famous I am, I am probably neither.

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #8)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:19 PM

11. Excuse me?

That's what they're in school to learn--who the experts are, and who has achieved recognition for their work.

To expect them to know this is unrealistic.


Cher

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #8)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:49 PM

17. Right, because anyone can be a university professor.

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #8)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:08 PM

27. It reminds me of that JC Watts incident at the Tulsa Airport a few years back.

He thought he didn't have to go thru security cause he was the number three Republican in the House. Apparently that means dick when you live in the land of All Men are Created Equal.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:30 PM

4. it ALWAYS amazes me how full the room is whenever I give an exam....

After twenty years it still amazes me. On an average class lecture day, one third to a half of the seats are filled, but on exam day every seat is filled and students are sitting on the floor. People show up for exams that I don't see otherwise all semester.

Of course, I did the same thing when I was in school thirty years ago. For several years I took part time night and weekend classes at a community college in northern Virginia while living in Harper's Ferry WV. I'd get the syllabus, the text, and any other books on the subject I could find at the library and just show up for exams, mostly. It was a long drive, with little chance of actually arriving on time unless I got off work early, and I couldn't afford the gas money to attend classes three nights a week anyway. Led to a LOT of self directed learning, LOL.

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Response to mike_c (Reply #4)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:14 PM

31. I worked my way through my undergrad education.

I sometimes had work that conflicted with class--work won. If I didn't work, I couldn't pay to go to school.

I did the same thing; learned the material on my own, asked a few fellow students what the main bits were that were covered, and showed up for the tests.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:35 PM

6. Eight years of college and i missed three classes.

I never understood how students could think they were in college when they did not show up.

When I started teaching, I made attendance part of the grade. If you wanted an A, you had to be there unless excused in advance.

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Response to Coyotl (Reply #6)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 01:40 PM

9. I rarely missed classes also. Returned to college as an adult - watched how the young

handle classes these days.

In one class, a student walked in at the beginning of class, walked up to the professor's desk, grabbed a handout from the pile the professor was going to distribute that class and walked out. The professor was angry enough to discuss it with us.

and classes would double in size on exam day. Often people would show up who I'd never seen before.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:29 PM

12. I always went to class, unless I was sick.

I knew I had to go to class but didn't know why.
Later, my kid brought home material about modalities of learning, from her Montessori school.

Turns out that I am very auditory and kinesthetic. I learn by hearing and doing.

I had to HEAR the professor and WRITE notes down to learn.

Had I only read the book, it would not have been retained.



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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:36 PM

13. Foreign language classes are skills classes

You can no more skip class and expect to learn a language well than you can skip your swimming lessons and expect to learn to swim properly.

My students had daily homework and spoken exercises, all of which counted for their grades, but in recognition of the annual epidemics of flu and colds and the unpredictable family emergency, I gave them a day of "sick leave" for each credit hour. That is, five-credit classes had five days of sick leave, and three-credit classes had three days. I reminded them that this was more generous than the sick leave that most of their parents received.

I instituted this policy after I had students skip class for weeks at a time and then expect to make up the work at the end of the semester. That just doesn't work in a language class.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:43 PM

15. That reminds me of a joke.

An economics professor at school had a strict policy that the hourly examinations were to be completed at the bell and anyone who kept writing on their exam after the bell would take a zero on the exam.

Well, one guy kept writing on his exam for a while after the bell and then confidently strode up to turn it in. The professor looked at him and said, "Don't bother to hand that paper in... you get a zero for continuing after the bell."

The guy looked at him and said, "Professor, do you know who I am!"

The professor replied, "No, and I don't care if your dad is president of the United States...you get a zero on this exam"

The guy, with a enraged look on his face, shouted, "You mean you have no idea who I am?"

The professor responded, "No, I've no idea who you think you are."

With that, the guy said "Good!" plunged his exam into the middle of the stack of other student's exams, and did a hasty retreat from the examination room!


I guess the "Do you know who I am"? works both ways.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:47 PM

16. Well, as he has witnessed, young students know everthing.

So it's not that they don't know who he is.

It's that what he thinks doesn't really matter.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 02:59 PM

22. wow - we would be dropped if we missed too many classes - Happened to me in 1979 and

same rules apply in 2012. You can drop but you won't get all your money back. It's pro-rated depending on how long you attened and after a certain date - nothing.

This is and was in Texas public universites and community college

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:00 PM

23. If he only could've boiled it down to 140 characters & Twittered it out to them...

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:08 PM

28. A bad professor can lose a good class ...

... but a good professor can lose a bad class. And a bad professor with a bad class is doomed.

By "lose" I mean "fail to engage." It cuts both ways. Some students will use "he/she is boring" as their excuse for staying home and sleeping off a hangover.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:09 PM

29. He's also the world's most esteemed collector of anime

and My Little Pony action figures.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:11 PM

30. Common problem: Too many people don't know the difference between "could" and "did". nt

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:26 PM

34. Hey, I'd be happy to attend on their dime!

If they're empty seats paid for, sure, I'll be there!

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #34)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:34 PM

37. You'd be surprised -

I knew someone who attended classes at a college for free, all because the professor knew the individual, knew what an eager student he was, and enjoyed having appreciative students like him in class.

Not suggesting that this is commonplace, and I doubt you could do it at Harvard, but pointing it out to say, professors enjoy human respect just like their students do. But somehow, many students today think they have no time for classes while attending college.

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Response to Liberal_in_LA (Original post)

Thu Jan 3, 2013, 03:34 PM

36. I have graduate students who miss two meetings of a class from time to time

I usually tell the story of how I missed two class meetings...the entire six years I was in graduate school! To be fair, there were only three and a half years of actual coursework, but still, the point is made.

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