Thursday, July 01, 2010

Taking a class in two months

I was thinking of how hard it would be to finish a class like statics (two hours of credit) in two months when I thought of a group of post-graduate students that finished a three hour class in two months. That meant six hours of lecture a week, projects and a comprehensive final. is a link to the class notes and other materials.

I was lucky enough that the group of mixed professionals (including M.D.s, hospital administrators and others) gave me a higher feedback rating than anyone else teaching in the program, and I survived putting the class together on about ten days notice. I was working full-time, down town in the city when I taught the class.

But the key point is that the students were also all working, 50-60 hours a week much like I was, in demanding jobs, and they all finished the class and earned As (admittedly, the projects were more important than the final, which was a test of concepts vs. application).

They read hundreds of pages of material, participated in class intelligently, completed projects and passed oral and well as written exams. Without significant prior academic exposure to the focus area of the class.

Think what they could have done if they were working fewer hours or had more preparation.

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