Tuesday, May 08, 2007

soon to be memories...

Tomorrow is my last teaching day for spring at BNCC.

This time of the year is kind of bittersweet... some favorites will be history, some doofballs will avoid my gaze in the hall next year and everyone will wonder that they did well while thinking they could have done better.

It seems like I spend more time writing and revising final exams in the spring than I do in the fall. Not sure why that is, maybe because I want them to be fair tests of student's abilities and maybe it is the fact that summer is a long time to brood about an unfair exam... One way or the other, they are written and off to be copied.

I'm also currently caught up on grading (sorry to those who are avoiding massive piles of grading by reading blogs, I don't mean to brag...). Tomorrow after class hubby and I will take a little roadtrip to the Big City that is very Windy... with a stop back in the cheese state at the Angry city on the way for some family party action.

On Monday I'll read my Intro to Philosophy final exams -- I'm doing something different this time, I'm doing short-answers with an open book exam. I'm not so sure how it will work out, but I know that EVENTUALLY they'll have to do the reading, if only during the final exam period :). While they are working on the short answer questions, I'll be reading their take-home essays and perhaps live-blogging the exam :).

On Wednesday I'll give my Logic final -- something that is the occasion of significant stress for some students. I wish there were a way to avoid that stress while still insuring that students who get an A in the course are able to do the most complex deductions. There is no non-stress inducing way to do so. In many respects, grading my logic finals is pretty satisfying. I see students who have struggled and worked hard do well while the ones who blew off the course until the last few weeks generally have to fight for a C. It is also objective, especially once the standards for a satisfactory deduction have been established -- and objectivity in grading is something that philosophers don't have much of on a regular basis.

The sad bit is that I've finally gotten to know my logic students. In my own defense, it isn't easy to get to know a group of 40 students.... but, it is finally the case that I know what their facial expressions mean and can ask them by name if they are having problems with the material. Week after next I'll meet a whole new class of logic students and have to get used to them... sigh.

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