I am not a professional teacher but I have students that seek me for clarification and knowledge. At times I use their personal real life experiences like how they relate to others to simplify the answer. Is it right professionally?
In the case of programming, when teaching of classes, using their families to signify inheritance. For example your father was tall so will you be… your mother is intelligent so will you be… with no interest of motivate them but educate them.

I teach at a top undergraduate college of a highly ranked university in India. We have a centralized system where the syllabus is designed at the Central level (with some input from teachers) and exams are set and evaluated centrally as well. We have an attendance policy, wherein students are required to attend at least two-thirds of the classes to sit for the exam (for all courses).

Some students are engaged in extra-curricular activities and miss a lot of lectures. While a lot of students don’t bother, some want me to “teach” the portion they missed, by meeting them separately. Is it reasonable for them to ask me to teach everything from scratch because they couldn’t attend the class? I teach a rigorous microeconomics course.

I forgot to explicitly mention: since it is a centralized system, teachers can’t specify their own attendance policies for a course. Moreover, I teach a compulsory course, and it can’t be dropped/taken in any other semester. Further, students go for competitions scheduled outside college during lecture hours, and I have no control over that. We are not a residential University, so extra-curricular activities can’t be held after class hours.

I was wondering if it is appropriate to have my phone out on my desk face down during class. I have done this for some time and have never been told to put it away.

On the one hand, putting it out shows the teacher, Here is my phone, I’m not using it.

On the other hand, putting it out might imply, I am waiting for something more important than your class.

Is it generally inappropriate or acceptable to have my phone out during class?

We are from Kuwait. Our university often has many foreign professors visiting for extended periods.

In my particular department, the head has now begun rejecting professors from the US, and starting to send those back who are here already, the reason being that this is in response to the immigration ban imposed on Muslims from certain countries (however not Kuwait) by the US.

How should one deal with this as a student in this department? My first reaction was that this is obviously wrong and unfair, but I know from my advisor that the department head also feels that it is unfair to the rest of the world’s professors that Americans can ban others from entering their country, but in turn can themselves go almost anywhere they want. So it is according to him a fair policy.

Disclaimer: I know there are some similar questions around. However, I don’t feel like the answers there suit this situation completely. This is why I am asking.

Some backstory (not necessarily important, but maybe of interest, just to give the complete picture): A student of mine was talking about a thesis (undergrad, so a relatively informal project of 1-3 months) at an external research facility. The professor there answered her first few emails in a positive way, they started discussing timetable. Professor says, he’s away for some time next year. Student makes suggestion for time to work on the project. Professor answers, says he forgot to think of some traveling he had to do during that time.
Now, student proposes another time for the project, later in the year, when the professor said he was at the institute.

Now the problem: Professor doesn’t answer anymore. Student waits 2-3 weeks, sends a friendly reminder, just as recommended in a lot of the answers on here. Waits another 2-3 weeks – no answer. Student seems to be a bit insecure now, emails the secretary of the professor saying she might have missed the professor, maybe he was absent, asks when he’s in office. Gets an answer, saying he is back in office at date XY, not really clear about whether the professor was absent before or not.

Now she came to me, asking whether I had any experience with this. She tells me the story I told you here and says that he feels it is rude to remind a second time but she a) might have missed the professor, he travels a lot, so there’s that possibility and b) she also feels like the professor would send at least a short notice if he decided to cancel the project. On the same time there is a time problem because she has to find another thesis at some point if this one doesn’t work out. However, contacting someone else might result in an awkward situation of having to cancel on of the projects in a late stage of preparation. She also really wants to work with the professor, he was no. 1 on her list.

I – sadly or luckily – have experienced no situation like this. But maybe there is a higher ranked academic (I am only a grad student myself, her tutor) or someone who had a similar experience here who can give his opinion on that. I genuinely feel bad for her and want to give her some good advice.
Thanks a lot!

I teach at a U.S. community college, and commonly write letters of recommendation for students applying subsequently to either bachelor’s programs or graduate school. I am accustomed to sending such letters directly to the school/program in question. Looking at other Academia SE questions, this seems to be the general practice.

However, once in a while I get a student who says something like, “No, this school requires that I include the recommendation with my application packet; give it directly to me.” I may or may not be informed as to the school or program in question. Should I comply with such a request, or decline?

Me with my two students got a paper accepted at a high-ranked CS conference. We have to register for the conference along with travel for presentation and other formalities.

I instructed my students to finish the formalities such as register, book for air tickets etc.

However, I find that I don’t have fund presently to book for air tickets and do the registration. Although, they agreed for the process, I am not feeling relaxed on this situation.

Did I do justice for this situation?

However, I told them that we can look for some travel grants after the tickets are booked.

A kind of a PhD Conference is going to take place in my university, and I’m currently one of the volunteers that should organize it. I have though about organizing a competition among PhD students that belong to different research teams. Each team have to answer different questions, like the well-known ‘Trivial Pursuit’ board game.

Why I am talking about this here? Because I need your help! I would appreciate a lot if you can suggest me more questions, in order to enrich the game and get rid of my research field bias. Also, it would be helpful if you suggest me 4 possible answers (of which only 1 must be the correct one).

The PhD students that are going to attend the conference mainly work with the following research lines:

  • ICT (Information and Communications Technologies)
  • Informatics
  • Machine Learning
  • Gamification
  • Image processing
  • Telematics and networks
  • Optical Communications

However, the questions can also be focused on the PhD life cycle too.

Could you help me? Thanks in advance!

P.S. This would be an example of question:

“You have to evaluate the performance of 5 methods when applied for
helping the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease. Regarding your dataset,
what methodology should you follow?”

  1. I’d divide my dataset in 5 subsets. Later, I’d train and test
    each method with each subset.
  2. I’d divide my datase into 2 subsets, train all the methods
    methods to one subset and test their performance with the other
  3. I’d train and test all the methods with the entire dataset.
  4. I’d divide my dataset in 10 subsets. I’d train the methods with half of the subsets and later I’d test them with the other 5.

I as a student have done various courses at my university and for each of these courses a textbook was prescribed. On the other hand, the instructor provided his notes as well. The textbook was huge (approximately 500 pages) whereas the lecture notes were only 100 pages and really short and clean. During my studies, I rarely used the textbook but relied on the notes and I think that I just did fine. I am not the only student who rarely uses prescribed textbook but other students also think the same in my classes. The students that I talked to prefer notes mainly because

  • textbooks are expensive so not everyone can afford buying 5 textbooks each academic session (5 subjects per session) which makes it 10 textbooks per year and the average price for each textbook is $150;
  • textbooks are huge (about 500 pages) so students prefer to use notes which is clean, short, and summarized;
  • It is true that during an academic session, a student studies for a particular subject, but he may forget some of the material so he needs to study it again few days before the exam. Studying a 500 pages textbook few days before the exams is practically impossible given the stress and pressure that students face when they get near the exam.

The only benefit of the textbooks that I can tell is that if you find a particular concept unclear, you can look at the textbook for clarification but most students really do not do this. If they struggle with a particular concept, they go to the office hours of the instructor and ask for clarification. The textbooks also have many exercises so if any student needs to do more exercises, they can uses the prescribed textbook but I have not seen any student who does this.

What is the purpose of a prescribed textbook in a course taught by instructor and why do instructors emphasize reading it?