Saturday, April 21, 2018
James Buchanan on His Teaching Method
I'm not sure giving students the impression they may have something when they are in error is a good way to teach. It strikes me that it is coddling weakness and confusion.
Isn't a teacher's attempt to keep students on their toes a much better method of teaching à la John Houseman? Is a teacher supposed to impart knowledge or be just one more friend?
An acquittance of mine recently switched from gender studies to accounting. She tells me one of the major differences was how gender studies professors coddled students. She was once allowed to turn in a final paper in one class a year late.
Now, in the business class environment at the same university, she says the professors just don't coddle.
In fact, in one accounting course, she appears to have a Houseman like professor. On the first day of class, he threw a girl out of his course for being 10 minutes late.
Overall, the class started with about 40 students and is down to about 25. But those 25 will surely get a very solid grounding in accounting.
There are probably teaching methods, that don't go to Houseman extremes, that can be effective. But coddling error does not strike me as particularly useful.
(ht Peter Boettke)
at 1:08 PM