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Wednesday, August 22, 2018

The First Day of Class: A Once-a-Semester Opportunity | Teaching Professor Blog

Maryellen Weimer, PhD says, "There’s only one first day of class. Here are some ideas for taking advantage of opportunities that are not available in the same way on any other day of the course."

Photo: iStock
    • It’s students’ first introduction to the course content. Catalog descriptions of courses may be accurate, but they aren’t all that good at conveying why the content is important, relevant, and useful; why students just may find it interesting; and why a few in the past have actually fallen in love with it. A good introduction provides a bit of background; it builds connections by identifying shared experiences and common interests. The details offered in a good introduction motivate continued conversation.
    • The first day gives you the chance to explain why this course and the content of this field matter to you. Of all the potential majors, you chose one in this field—how did that happen? Did you choose well? Why?

Source: Teaching Professor Blog