Would you agree with my idealistic enthusiasm for My Freshman Year: What a Professor Learned by Becoming a Student, the story of a professor of anthropology at a large state university who realized that she no longer understood the behavior and attitudes of her students and returned to the classroom? And my uneasiness when reading that some “Online Professors Pose as Students to Encourage Real Learning” (Chronicle of Higher Education, 5/29/09), in the class which they’re teaching? Can you offer testimonies, tips, or sources regarding what it takes to stimulate an on-line learning community? We would love to have specific suggestions regarding how to direct the conversation of the ESN Book Club: Your Mind Matters.
Note: If you don’t have a copy of John Stott’s Your Mind Matters, I’d encourage you to borrow/purchase so you’re ready to go on Tuesday. If you’d like a head start on reading but don’t have a copy of the book, visit InterVarsity Press’ website for PDFs of the Foreward and Chapter 1.
About the author:
Tom enjoys daily conversations regarding living out the Biblical Story with his wife Theresa and their four girls, around the block, at Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church (where he teaches adult electives and co-leads a small group), among healthcare professionals as the Northeast Regional Director for the Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA), and in higher ed as a volunteer with the Emerging Scholars Network (ESN). For a number of years, the Christian Medical Society / CMDA at Penn State College of Medicine was the hub of his ministry with CMDA. Note: Tom served with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship / USA for 20+ years, including 6+ years as the Associate Director of ESN. He has written for the ESN blog from its launch in August 2008. He has studied Biology (B.S.), Higher Education (M.A.), Spiritual Direction (Certificate), Spiritual Formation (M.A.R.), Ministry to Emerging Generations (D.Min.). To God be the glory!
I actually really liked “My Freshman Year” – thought it offered up an interesting perspective and gave the faculty member new insight into her students. I think the difference is that she had no real authority over the students when she was doing her study, vs. the professors who pose as students.
It’s an interesting dilemma – kind of like when my students wanted to “friend” me on Facebook. It’s an odd feeling, and the rules or status quo for that type of relationship aren’t really worked out yet in my opinion.