Y a-t’il un cours dans ce texte?

So my course is designed for senior majors, honors students, and M.A. students in our program as well as some other disciplines where it can count as an elective. Therefore, it is given in English, although the ideal audience will also have Spanish. It needs 10 students to make and this is the census:

2 – High school English teachers taking graduate hours for the M.A. + 30. They are cultured people who have read some Latin American literature in translation, but speak no Spanish.
1 – M.A. student in French who speaks somewhat reasonable Spanish.
1 – STEM student. Emigrated from Cuba five years ago and speaks very good English. Is in the course to fulfill a required Humanities elective.
4 – Senior majors in Spanish, originally from Caribbean coasts of Colombia, Venezuela, and Mexico. All of these students speak English and some speak it very well.
1 – Senior major in Spanish whose native language is English, but who has taken other courses at this level already.
1 – Sophomore major in Spanish with other major in a technical field; is taking this course now despite the fact that its content is too advanced for hir because it is being given in English and we do not have a lot of other options toward the major; it will count and ze has space in hir schedule now, so ze is taking it.
1 – Student in a social sciences field, on exchange from a grande école in Paris. Is in the course to improve skills in English and Spanish. Speaks more Spanish than English. Has been in this country 10 days so far. Is concerned that the intellectual level of the course, the amount of background assumed, and the level of expertise required to pass might be beyond hir capacities, since our topic is out of field for hir.

How truly good do the papers have to be, the Parisian asked with great concern, which I found picturesque in anyone coming from hir university. I am far more concerned about hir simply following what is said in semi-colloquial, Gulf and Caribbean coast English and Spanish than hir ability to comprehend the course material and write.

In addition, this course is new to me and not quite in field. I am both overprepared — I have too much material —  and underprepared, as I am not in full control of this material. Altogether, we are a motley crew. And that, señores, is my fifth course this semester. I met four classes yesterday and this one today; I will meet four tomorrow.


9 thoughts on “Y a-t’il un cours dans ce texte?

  1. Your description of being both over- and underprepared is beautifully put. I feel that way pretty much all the time.

  2. Moi, je suis en train de me coucher maintenant. Très fatigué.

    [Moi aussi, je suis fatiguée. — N. Ed.

      1. I’m running Linux and it’s keystrokes across all platforms. The same keystrokes as work in word processors, work on blogs, Facebook, everywhere.

  3. How can anybody teach 5 courses per semester?? This sounds very brutal.

    When I have 3 courses, I feel like I just phone one of them in. Anything more than two I cannot do well.

  4. I am just phoning it in on one of them, basically. The instructors have between 6-8. We’ve all been upped due to budget cuts / short staffing.

    I don’t do well with more than 2 courses, either – I am not social enough in the right way.

    How I do 5: not easily. I think it may have been a panic attack I was having when I wrote this post.

  5. 5 courses is draining for anybody, social or not social. The only piece of advice I can give you (besides you are always welcome to ask me question in things related to my expertise, obviously), is to remember the excitement that you have when you comment on my post that are related to teaching and how to teach material. If you could find that joy while teaching, I think it would improve things.

    1. I’m sitting in office whispering about it with across the hall neighbor. From our POV the problem here is that if you any excitement show before the senior level, you just get slapped down. We are struggling for the right to show videoclips and not to be shamed for wanting to!

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