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Maintaining Student Discipline Linda B. Nilson, Ph.D., Director Office of Teaching Effectiveness and Innovation 445 Brackett Hall, Clemson University,

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Presentation on theme: "Maintaining Student Discipline Linda B. Nilson, Ph.D., Director Office of Teaching Effectiveness and Innovation 445 Brackett Hall, Clemson University,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Maintaining Student Discipline Linda B. Nilson, Ph.D., Director Office of Teaching Effectiveness and Innovation 445 Brackett Hall, Clemson University, USA

2 The Problem with Incivilit ies Interfere with student learning, and good students resent them Unnerve instructors

3 Key Issues about Incivility What is it? Why the increase? How to prevent/reduce it? How to respond to it?

4 Why the Increase Student diversity Anonymity in large institutions, classes Primary and secondary school culture Required large class taught often by women and young TAs. Indulgent or indifferent parents Materialism, consumption v. learning Student entitlement Everyday cultural norms less formal

5 Prevention: Command Attention Good public speaking skills = successful instructor persona = charisma –Voice (exercises) –Body, esp eye contact (exercises) –Elimination of distracting behaviors –Balance of lecture (w/stories) and student activities (payoff)

6 Prevention: Balancing Authority and Approachability For Authority 1.Have and enforce conduct rules. Instructor-generated conduct policies in syllabus OR Student-generated conduct contract OR Bills of student rights & responsibilities

7 2 ) Have tough policies on attendance, late work, missed tests, cheating, etc. laid out in syllabus (handle any exceptions privately). 3) Have tough penalties for freeloaders in group work in syllabus OR group-generated. 4) Have high expectations; refuse to accept/grade shoddy work.

8 5) Integrate assignments and activities that get students to do the readings. 6) Accept grading protests only in writing with justifications within a tight time limit (in syllabus); subtract # of points complained about w/o cause. 7) Symbolically reinforce authority if female, small, short. 8) Display class outline or objectives.

9 For Approachability 1)Practice social immediacies. 2)Reward appropriate behavior 3)Model appropriate behavior. 4)Explain why you use the readings, methods, and assignments you do. 5)Schedule activities in lectures every min. (for short attention spans).

10 Prevention: Intelligent Planning Schedule important announcements and activities at beginning and end of class. Assign student seating (learn names). Induce attendance. Manage computer use.

11 Wise Respons e Reinforce main reason for conduct rules: “for your fellow students.” Respond immediately but in calm and “cool” manner—swift but matter-of-fact. Nuisance misconduct (private talks, electronics, monopolizer, question- repeater): Single out student(s) with light touch, humor; divert attention.

12 Aggressive behavior: –Unthreatening verbal: keep private; show empathy. –Threatening: move to public area, report to others –Disorderly conduct in class: tell student to leave class. If trouble, call security/police. Report to others.

13 Understanding and Preventing Cheating Linda B. Nilson, Ph.D., Director Office of Teaching Effectiveness and Innovation 445 Brackett Hall, Clemson University, USA

14 Misrepresents Actual Student Learning Repercussions for student, institution, employers, and society. Course and major exams (entrance) –U.S.: course only –India: both

15 Key Issues about Cheating Prevalence of cheating Students motivations to cheat Ways to detect it Ways to prevent or reduce it

16 Prevalence of Cheating 75% of U.S. college students admit to cheating; 90% admit to cheating using Internet (esp. plagiarism). Fewer than 30% of these regret it. Only 7% stop after being caught. Indian students probably similar in courses, but also cheat on entrance and year-end exams. Pay $$$$ for exams; favors the wealthy.

17 Motivations to Cheat U.S.: To be $uccessful with ease –Overall moral decline in society: business, religious, and political leaders –Students see them as successful and believe few pay a price. – Also laziness, desire for better grades, and pressure to succeed India: Hyper-competition over slim chances for success

18 Student perceptions –Cheating normal and barely unethical; everybody’s doing it (varies by institution) –Easy to get away with it (large classes, multiple choice exams, online) –Small penalties for getting caught Faculty ignore or penalize lightly and don’t put case through official channels. –In India, may leak entrance exams for $$$

19 Ways to Detect Cheating Not video monitoring (Lucknow U.) Use many human eyes and ears to proctor exams. Inspect exams for cheating and assignments for plagiarism Investigate entrance exam leaks and punish perpetrators

20 Ways to Prevent or Reduce Cheating Course 35 ways for instructors (incl plagiarism) Have strict official channels and put cases through them. Honor codes? Change society to not tolerate ethical behavior! Make “winners” into losers.

21 Entrance exams Stop exam leaks in universities. OR Establish private testing companies. Admit students on multiple criteria. Long-term: –Increase supply of higher educational institutions, incl easier-admission ones. –Make jobs not needing college more attractive (other ways to success). –Reduce population.

22 End-of-year exams Too stressful, so encourage cheating Result in short-term surface learning Students need frequent low-stakes testing for feedback (many quizzes) and repetitive exposure to material.


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