It seems to me that school has become the extracurricular activity as of late. I know that doesn’t make sense, but let me explain myself. In the past, school came first and then other activities were scheduled if they could be fit in around the demands of school. These other activities were called extracurricular activities.
Anymore, students seem to be trying to fit school in around too many other demands. It seems that students do not realize that being a full-time student is a full-time job. Instead, they appear to think that full-time school and its related course work can be fit in around a full-time job, two preschoolers, a trip to Disney World, and their favorite television programs.
Many of my students this semester are very put out that they must work outside of class time to be successful in the course. After talking to colleagues, I get the feeling the same thing is happening with their students. Class attendance and course work take a back burner to the other activities in our students’ lives and they expect our courses to accommodate them.
I think we instructors bear some of the blame by allowing students to turn in late work for no reason, make up missed tests, again, missed for no good reason. We record our lectures so students do not have to come to class, as if the lecture is the important part of class. Students are put out when we ask a question on a test about a class discussion because it wasn’t in the book, so we stop asking those questions.
I think we instructors feel pressure from administration to do whatever it takes to get students through our courses and as a result have enabled our students’ behavior. I am wondering if it is possible to correct this course and if it is, how I will go about making the correction in my own classes.