Tuesday, December 9, 2008

When did undergrads become so dumb??

I am marking the finals exams for Work and Exercise Physiology. Not a terribly demanding course. Its third year course and is taught by the guy who TA'd me during my first undergrad physiology course (He's cute so I totally went to 5pm lectures). My point in telling you this, is that I've had him for a teacher, he's a good teacher. Thorough, encourages questions, easy to approach etc.
The students are not getting the material. On Q1, I was consistently giving 1/4 or 0.5/4. I am almost done Q2, the average being .5/3.
How did these people get to 3rd year???!!!!

13 comments:

Mrs. Spit said...

Umm, about the same time as the bank tellers that work for me decided they couldn't tell the differnce between gross and net withdrawals, and about the same time that they couldn't comprehend why a bank wouldn't facilitate transfers to Iran, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan. . . .

(banging head on wall)

Juniper Shoemaker said...

He's cute so I totally went to 5pm lectures

LOL

How did these people get to 3rd year???!!!!

So much for forty-somethings winning the Dumb Championship.

P.S. Word verification: "pounts". Almost like the expressions you'll see on your students' faces tomorrow.

Melanie said...

LOL! I've had classes where I attended regularly purely because the prof was attractive.

When did they get so dumb? Man. I remember a first year student I TAed who couldn't tell time on a regular analog clock. The third year genetics lab students -- supposedly the hottest of the hot stuff at the school? Seriously dismal for the most part. Plagiarizing, unable to put together a comprehensive thought in writing, couldn't handle a simple hypothesis statement.

I feel for you.

Mimi said...

That is part of the reason I have taken so long to finish school. I am tired of all the idiots around me. I mean really! Some of the questions out of their mouths during lecture straight up hurt my head.

Amanda@Lady Scientist said...

I'm not sure. It was probably about the same time that they decided it was no longer necessary to go to class or look things up by themselves. (Yes, I've recently had a frustrating bunch of office hours. Why do you ask?)

Professor in Training said...

Our faculty have been struggling with the same question this week as a third of our juniors are about to fail a foundation course that is a mandatory pre-requisite for several of the spring semester courses. Some of the faculty are insisting that the course needs to be dumbed down to accommodate all of the students' abilities. Hmmmm. I'm more of the opinion that the students should study more instead of partying all weekend or using their employment/families as an excuse.

okham said...

Hehehe, we need to swap horror stories at some point...

ScientistMother said...

Mrs.Spit - I resorted to beer instead

Juniper - I like that word verification.

Mel - that other cute one was the chair at my MSc defense, a geeky jude law. Hmmm.

Mimi - As one who asks many many dumb questions, I will not hate on someone for that. Its how they don't actually answer the question being asked.

Amanda - hehe, i've been guilty of that, its so much easier to ask :)

PiT - seriously?! They want to dumb it down! What is the point of university if not to challenge students to go beyond what they think they can?!!!

Okham - don't laugh, it so bad!!!

okham said...

Scientistmother -- OK, this is the text of an e-mail I got this morning:

"I know you said in class that the exam is open book, but does that mean the textbook ?"

okham said...

I just got another one. This one says:
"Hi, since we are having the final on Wednesday, do you think it's a good idea to read the textbook .. so that we know our theory and what not..." ...

I am not making stuff up, I swear...

Eugenie said...

:-(

Not all of us are dumb.. really...


(I think...)

ScientistMother said...

Okham - beer, thats all I can say. beer and lots of it..

Eugene - I hope they're not all dumb, maybe its just this class. I know I messed up / misread questions as well. But every single question? every single person???

pumpkinesque said...

To be fair, it could be the schooling they have before undergrad that has changed and so they start with less knowledge and less skills in being able to find things out for themselves. It is also really easy to not be able to see how someone can misunderstand a concept or a skill that you have known for a long time. This is maybe why there is a school of thought that the more recently you have learned the subject the better teacher you will be as you are in-tune with where people have difficulty. I'm in no way saying this is you or whats happening in the course you TA - just trying to paint the picture a little from the other side!