“May I be excused…”

Gary Larson always strikes a chord on various levels with his Far Side cartoons, but this one grows more poignant for me the more I work with students and faculty.  (Besides, how can you go wrong with such an aptly named teacher – though misspelled??)

Certainly not because all, maybe not even most, faculty approach teaching this way – the dreaded “data dump” or “covering content”.  I always hope faculty don’t approach teaching from the perspective of filling the empty heads of students.  But based on what I see at many institutions and in the research coming from T&L, the majority of classes taught in higher ed begin with this perspective at the fore front of the course design process.  And, of course, this cartoon articulates the learner’s perspective from a “data dump” class environment.


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