Professors Give Up On Classroom Smartphone Regulation – “In a meeting with a senior administrator, I was advised to drop the no-electronic devises in class policy”

climate_change adwh2833 • 19 days ago
You know, if I could keep students awake in class, or get them to spare me a minute from looking at their cell phones, I might actually worry about how I am influencing them. I think young people are a lot less fragile than everyone thinks.

professornot climate_change • 19 days ago
The second a student pulls out a phone in class, they’re counted absent. Fall asleep? You’re counted absent. 3 absences, 1/2 a letter grade lost. Tough but it works.

withnailandi professornot • 19 days ago
… I tried that with my classes, and one of my students screamed and complained from my chair to the dean to the provost and back. I got strictly forbidden to do that stuff.
Our hands are tied about the iPhone issue. It really stinks.

dgoss withnailandi • 14 days ago
… When I started teaching at university 20 years ago, I was told by the department head that he had my back. If it came to a dispute with students, he would go to bat for me in such cases as the one withnailandi mentioned. But about 10 years ago all of that changed. Since then, my department has had 3 different department heads, and all of them have made it clear that students are not to be confronted about anything. They must be kept happy.
I adopted the same policy of no electronics in class as professornot did a few years ago, counting as absent anyone who raised the screen on their laptop or pulled out a cell phone during discussions. The result was the lowest course evaluations in years, and a department that hauled me in and basically (politely) threatened me with being fired if it happened again. In a meeting with a senior administrator, I was advised to drop the no-electronic devises in class policy, even though I had made it plain to students that it only applied to discussion group sessions, not during lectures or any other part of the course.
But in this day of corporate universities, students must be appeased at every turn, including never raising a discouraging word in the classroom, or making them uncomfortable in any way.

raym5888 withnailandi • 15 days ago
Depressing but true. What I resent is students playing with their iphones when you are giving them safety instructions in the lab. If they swallow an earthworm or swallow the cane toad eggs or put one tube in the centrifuge or pour water into the conc H2SO4 what is your legal position?

– excerpts from exchanges in the comments section of ‘Higher Education Is Drowning in BS’, Christian Smith, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 9 Jan 2018

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