Month: November 2013

no longer a virgin

Posted on

So I had my first time recently and actually I did it three times in a row. I held my first lectures and seminars in front of students!!!

The story goes like this: My supervisor and the module leader of this lovely heterodox economics course left, for whatever reason, and won’t return for the rest of the semester. That meant that me and my Swedish PhD colleague had to take over her course, because apparently there aren’t any other heterodox economists at our university able to teach. Since my colleague was away for a conference three weeks ago, I had to plan the lecture and seminars on my own. The funny thing about it was, that I was asked to do that a day before. So on a Wednesday, noon, I was told to do the lectures without any materials. so I had to make a powerpoint for that and came up with an idea for the seminars the following day. HURRAY!!

But the task was not to bad and I managed to pull of some lovely slides for the next day. What followed were two sessions on institutional economics and luckily I am quite good at that so preparing for these lectures actually allowed me to play a bit with prezi because getting context into the slides wasn’t that hard at all. 

However, I thought I made a quite good job but still, the students seemed a bit unmotivated. I don’t know whether they don’t understand the stuff I was talking about or if they just don’t care. At the end is was hard and disappointing to sit in the seminars without them participating in any kind of conversation. At least the one seminar has two bright students who talk, which make the whole thing somewhat nice but the others are just… so seemingly lazy. All they want is a pass in their essays they have to write, not more. No ambition or so, just pass, graduate, diploma, no thanks? One of the students sent me his first essay and I thought the structure was good but he need to put more effort in his arguments. Hope he takes my comments serious. 

Anyway, despite the lack of participation of my students I think this was quite a good experience. The next few weeks I won’t have to teach but to attend the lectures and seminars to support the guest speaker and my colleague who will tell the kids about post-Keynesian economics. In the light of the recent developments in Manchester, the Guardian did a piece on a post-crisis student group demanding a more pluralistic curriculum and the initiatives from INET, these students… our students are in a luxury position; the already got the education what others demand for. 

Now, I am no longer a teaching virgin… I hope the students will give me some good comments in the final evaluation of the course. Or better not? At the end I have to do more teaching which steals time to work on my PhD and the papers I am working on.