Sunday, April 22, 2007

English Class

Dear ENGL 2111 Students,
A word about the presence (or otherwise) of lecture notes on FLO: Lecture notes have been posted as a matter of course in recent years because the quality of the cassettes was so poor. In short, now that the digital downloads are available, it is expected that students will take their lecture notes from these alone. Listening to lectures (or better still, attending them), processing information and taking down notes, is deemed an essential learning skill in the tertiary learning environment. So, why am I having this rant? To stress that you are the first group of university students ever to go through with unlimited access to lecture content in this form, and to offer my view that access to lecture notes as well as digital recordings is tantamount to spoon-feeding. Why do we give lectures at all if students can download us and watch slides at the same time; This is how the topic would be offered if you were doing it externally, which you are not. No doubt this will annoy many, but so be it. And worry not: I will post lecture notes when I believe the content warrants it such as when there is a strong pictorial element.

This is an abbreviated form of the announcement posted for us by our lecturer. I do not attend the lectures for this class. I have a tut at the same time and as tut's require attendence and are not taped, I choose that over a lecture that I can access later.

I understand where she's coming from in that a lot of people don't go to lectures, and not because they have a clash, and that printing out powerpoints is easier than taking your own notes. However, if I attended a lecture, I would have the powerpoints to look at, as well as whatever random film they decide to show, while I listen to the lecturer and take notes. Obviously, they're going to put up every film clip or whatever that they show but I really wish they'd put the powerpoints back up so that when they say, "And you can see this image clearly demonstrates, well, you can see," I could actually see.


English Lecturer: [The filmmaker puts all this stuff in that we can now call a motif] which I would argue is totally premeditated.

It must be so nice for filmmakers that english lecturers come along and put all this meaning into their editors' choices when really it was just cos it was a pretty shot, or they were running out of time on location, or they needed to fill in space between this scene and the next.

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