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Old 09-05-2013, 11:54 AM
 
Location: NoVa
18,431 posts, read 34,381,379 times
Reputation: 19814

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Well, I am back in college. I was in school for a semester a few years ago and stopped for personal reasons and here I am again, in a much bigger city with a much bigger campus.

I am having to go to three different campuses for my different classes, I will chose my classes earlier next semester.

I will be 40 in December and am surrounded by kids, 17 and up.

This is what I have noticed:

They don't take notes. Ever. I am in an Anatomy and Physiology class taking notes like crazy and they are all just sitting there. They are not vested at all. It is as though my teacher and I are the only ones there. More than half of them did not even care to get their books.

Maybe they already know all of the material. Maybe their minds store every bit of information the teacher speaks. I don't know.

In my writing class my teacher has given us a project to do. Descriptive writing. We are grouped into groups of 3-4 students and he gives each group a different thing to do. A new building has just opened starting this fall. My group is to describe the 2nd and 3rd floors of the building. I have no idea what the other groups have to do.

We are up and away and get off on the 2nd floor. I have my notebook and a pen out and I am looking around and taking notes on the things I see. There is a wonderful library on the second floor and I walk all around it, taking it all in. I ask questions. We go to the rest of the floor and I continue taking notes.

I look at the girls and ask them if they are going to take notes. "Should we?" Oh goodness. I ask if they have ever done research or descriptive writing. I am a mom so I go ahead and ask if they have ever been on an adventure. I know my kids and I have plenty of times.

I have a daughter who has just started her senior year and a son who is in his second year of college. We still go on adventures!

On to the 3rd floor which houses many of the professors offices and the Math and Science department. This was moved from another building.

I talk to the head of the department, we have met before. We had a nice little conversation and she told me the building qualifies as a LEED Building. Energy efficient, etc.

I write all of this down. I run into my math teacher and say hello. Not one word has been written by these girls.

We have to do a 3-5 minute presentation before the class. One of us can speak or all of us can speak. I got the feeling they decided early on that I was going to take in all the information as well as do the presentation.

They have another thing coming. While I know all of the info about the building, I told them that there are three of us and we can split it three ways. I will take the library and they can each take a floor.

I asked if they knew everything they needed to know about the building. Yes. They tell me they have good memories and remember everything.

The teacher wrote up these individual group assignments and assured us that he would be asking questions. If the answers sounded wrong, he would be asking more questions.

I have no idea how or even if this is going to be graded. I do not know if I am setting myself up for failure by having these girls take a part, but I do know that they need to learn that they are adults now and need to take care of themselves.

When I was in college before, the students whined and complained about why they had low test scores and would even call me out asking why mine were so high.

I get it, but I just don't get it. If there is nothing I have taught my son, I have taught him that he needs to take good notes. If he needs to go over them 50 times to get the info in his head, then go over them 50 times.

These kids are something else. Maybe they will just prove me wrong. I don't know.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:19 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, 615' Elevation, Zone 8b - originally from SF Bay Area
44,606 posts, read 81,297,702 times
Reputation: 57853
Much of it is the lack of preperation for college in high school, where they hold your hand to get you to pass. The other is the idea that "everyone has to go to college" so the parents send them whether they have the interest and aptitude for it, and many go for the "social aspects." From people I know going to college currently those that take it seriously are about 20% so you must have stumbled onto a class that's more the exception. If they grade on the curve you have it made.
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Old 09-05-2013, 10:06 PM
 
Location: in a house
3,574 posts, read 14,348,489 times
Reputation: 2400
Look in the syllabus for the grading scheme for the presentation - it will be in there if it is a graded assignment. Many courses have e-textbooks which can be viewed on tablets or the smartphones; maybe that's why you didn't see any books. Good luck to you!
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:52 AM
 
4,749 posts, read 4,326,153 times
Reputation: 4970
They don't take notes in A&P? I'm 19, and we ALL took notes in A&P (and some even tape recorded). And screw e-textbooks, I need to highlight stuff. As far as group projects go, it usually ends up with one person doing the majority of the work.

No offense; you most go to school with a bunch of stoners. I've never heard of this in my life.
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Old 09-06-2013, 01:09 AM
 
24,488 posts, read 41,163,584 times
Reputation: 12921
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinkmani View Post
They don't take notes in A&P? I'm 19, and we ALL took notes in A&P (and some even tape recorded). And screw e-textbooks, I need to highlight stuff. As far as group projects go, it usually ends up with one person doing the majority of the work.

No offense; you most go to school with a bunch of stoners. I've never heard of this in my life.
You can highlight in e-textbooks as well. What I like about e-textbooks is that you can see what other people are highlighting as well.
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Old 09-06-2013, 04:01 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 61,338,491 times
Reputation: 10695
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pikantari View Post
Well, I am back in college. I was in school for a semester a few years ago and stopped for personal reasons and here I am again, in a much bigger city with a much bigger campus.

I am having to go to three different campuses for my different classes, I will chose my classes earlier next semester.

I will be 40 in December and am surrounded by kids, 17 and up.

This is what I have noticed:

They don't take notes. Ever. I am in an Anatomy and Physiology class taking notes like crazy and they are all just sitting there. They are not vested at all. It is as though my teacher and I are the only ones there. More than half of them did not even care to get their books.

Maybe they already know all of the material. Maybe their minds store every bit of information the teacher speaks. I don't know.

In my writing class my teacher has given us a project to do. Descriptive writing. We are grouped into groups of 3-4 students and he gives each group a different thing to do. A new building has just opened starting this fall. My group is to describe the 2nd and 3rd floors of the building. I have no idea what the other groups have to do.

We are up and away and get off on the 2nd floor. I have my notebook and a pen out and I am looking around and taking notes on the things I see. There is a wonderful library on the second floor and I walk all around it, taking it all in. I ask questions. We go to the rest of the floor and I continue taking notes.

I look at the girls and ask them if they are going to take notes. "Should we?" Oh goodness. I ask if they have ever done research or descriptive writing. I am a mom so I go ahead and ask if they have ever been on an adventure. I know my kids and I have plenty of times.

I have a daughter who has just started her senior year and a son who is in his second year of college. We still go on adventures!

On to the 3rd floor which houses many of the professors offices and the Math and Science department. This was moved from another building.

I talk to the head of the department, we have met before. We had a nice little conversation and she told me the building qualifies as a LEED Building. Energy efficient, etc.

I write all of this down. I run into my math teacher and say hello. Not one word has been written by these girls.

We have to do a 3-5 minute presentation before the class. One of us can speak or all of us can speak. I got the feeling they decided early on that I was going to take in all the information as well as do the presentation.

They have another thing coming. While I know all of the info about the building, I told them that there are three of us and we can split it three ways. I will take the library and they can each take a floor.

I asked if they knew everything they needed to know about the building. Yes. They tell me they have good memories and remember everything.

The teacher wrote up these individual group assignments and assured us that he would be asking questions. If the answers sounded wrong, he would be asking more questions.

I have no idea how or even if this is going to be graded. I do not know if I am setting myself up for failure by having these girls take a part, but I do know that they need to learn that they are adults now and need to take care of themselves.

When I was in college before, the students whined and complained about why they had low test scores and would even call me out asking why mine were so high.

I get it, but I just don't get it. If there is nothing I have taught my son, I have taught him that he needs to take good notes. If he needs to go over them 50 times to get the info in his head, then go over them 50 times.

These kids are something else. Maybe they will just prove me wrong. I don't know.
Just because they don't do things your way doesn't mean they are lazy or doing things wrong. They are probably tweeting about this old lady in their classes that actually writes things on paper when she can take photos and record notes with her IPhone....

As the parent of college students, I would say your observations are not the norm...
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Old 09-06-2013, 06:24 AM
 
Location: NoVa
18,431 posts, read 34,381,379 times
Reputation: 19814
Quote:
Originally Posted by mm_mary73 View Post
Look in the syllabus for the grading scheme for the presentation - it will be in there if it is a graded assignment. Many courses have e-textbooks which can be viewed on tablets or the smartphones; maybe that's why you didn't see any books. Good luck to you!
No, they are actually required textbooks.

Thank you! =)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinkmani View Post
They don't take notes in A&P? I'm 19, and we ALL took notes in A&P (and some even tape recorded). And screw e-textbooks, I need to highlight stuff. As far as group projects go, it usually ends up with one person doing the majority of the work.

No offense; you most go to school with a bunch of stoners. I've never heard of this in my life.
Nope, but a few note takers last night. I like to highlight as well. I really haven't noticed and real stoner types. I think it is more of a you need to go to school or get a job and they pick school and don't really care how they do. If their friends are there, it is just an extension of the socialization of high school
Quote:
Originally Posted by golfgal View Post
Just because they don't do things your way doesn't mean they are lazy or doing things wrong. They are probably tweeting about this old lady in their classes that actually writes things on paper when she can take photos and record notes with her IPhone....

As the parent of college students, I would say your observations are not the norm...
They can do it however they want. I am hardly an old lady but I do retain the info much better by writing it. Somehow it connects where as just listening or reading does not. I am not sure if this has something to do with my epilepsy, but I think it may. One of my medications causes an issue with short term memory problems.

I am a parent of a college student as well and I am also a person who has the burden of seeing everything and hearing everything that goes on in a room even if I don't want to. Are you sitting in class with your kids when they go to college? Is that how you know what the norm is?

Like last night when I was trying to listen to the teacher talk and give instructions on what we were to do in the lab I also heard 4-5 girls chattering the whole time just to my right.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:03 AM
 
Location: A coal patch in Pennsyltucky
10,379 posts, read 10,680,222 times
Reputation: 12710
Quote:
Originally Posted by golfgal View Post
Just because they don't do things your way doesn't mean they are lazy or doing things wrong. They are probably tweeting about this old lady in their classes that actually writes things on paper when she can take photos and record notes with her IPhone....

As the parent of college students, I would say your observations are not the norm...
I have had a similar experience. The difference is I am older than the OP and I took classes at four different colleges for a second undergrad degree. Taking classes at four different schools (once in the same term) gave me an interesting perspective. There can be a huge difference in the intellectual ability and motivation of students between different schools. The same probably also applies to different majors. I took introductory and general ed. classes where I thought the students should not be wasting their time in college. At most of the schools, I felt like I was in the top 3%; at one of the schools I felt like 75% were smarter than me.

The comment about note taking is interesting. I'm not a good note taker. Most of the students in my classes took more notes than me. The ones who didn't take notes were usually the ones who didn't want to be there, had no interest in the subject and were struggling with the class.

BTW, in some of my classes the instructors did not permit electronic devices. Most tolerated them but some would tell students to put them away.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:13 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 61,338,491 times
Reputation: 10695
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pikantari View Post
No, they are actually required textbooks.

Thank you! =)


Nope, but a few note takers last night. I like to highlight as well. I really haven't noticed and real stoner types. I think it is more of a you need to go to school or get a job and they pick school and don't really care how they do. If their friends are there, it is just an extension of the socialization of high school


They can do it however they want. I am hardly an old lady but I do retain the info much better by writing it. Somehow it connects where as just listening or reading does not. I am not sure if this has something to do with my epilepsy, but I think it may. One of my medications causes an issue with short term memory problems.

I am a parent of a college student as well and I am also a person who has the burden of seeing everything and hearing everything that goes on in a room even if I don't want to. Are you sitting in class with your kids when they go to college? Is that how you know what the norm is?

Like last night when I was trying to listen to the teacher talk and give instructions on what we were to do in the lab I also heard 4-5 girls chattering the whole time just to my right.
No, I don't sit in on classes but I know a lot of college kids and none of them are like what you are describing. Maybe it's the school you are attending, the kids we know are going to better schools so that might make a difference. They were top kids in high school too. So far our kids have a 4.0 so whatever they are doing works for them...

Sit in the front of the class and ask people to quiet down when the prof is talking...

you are old in the eyes of a bunch of 18 year olds
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:46 AM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,840 posts, read 9,209,134 times
Reputation: 13779
I'm significantly older than the OP, and a few years ago, I took a class at the college where I work. What I noticed is that my commitment to the class was far more than most of the "kids". I was surprised at how many of my younger classmates missed classes, came to class unprepared, and failed to hand in assignments. They certainly didn't seem to take it as seriously as I did.

However, looking back on my original college career in the late 1960s and early 1970s, I have to admit that I wasn't exactly Ms Diligent myself in those days. I blew off numerous class meetings for pinochle games in the student lounge or to listen to some rabble-rousing speaker in the quad or just to hang out with friends at one of the local bars. I did well academically because I was a smart kid with an excellent memory (ie, I can hear/read something once and remember it long afterward) and a good work ethic, but I could have done much better if I hadn't been so busy having fun in college.

I'm not going to chastise today's college students because they don't have their noses to the grindstone every minute. This is their "last hurrah" to be "free" from real responsibility. I'm also not a hypocrite. OTOH, I'm also not going to have a lot of sympathy for those who party too hearty and find themselves on academic probation or out the door. One of the first lessons on the way to real adulthood that kids have to learn is that there really are consequences for their actions.
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