After working manically on research and writing over Winter Break (more on that in a later post), the start of the spring semester really took me by surprise. I was originally assigned 3 sections of English 102, our research- & argument-orientated class in the sequence, but ended up accepting another English 101 because of some unexpected student demand.
Have to say that, while the extra income will certainly be useful (and I still think of money in impoverished "grad student" terms), I was looking forward to the reduced workload, especially with all my writing projects in the pipeline. Still, given the general insecurity of living year-to-year on one-year contracts, I couldn't in good conscience refuse. Plus, I still do have an ideal schedule -- all four of my classes are back-to-back on a MWF.
So anyway, given that the semester snuck up on me -- and that I got that 4th class two days before the semester started -- you could imagine how I've been scrambling. So far, although I still need to tweak my major assignments for that 4th class I accepted last minute, I'm caught up.
I'm more than a little sad, though -- my students from last semester were really memorable, and part of me wishes they were still around. C'est la vie.
Incidentally, got my Student Course Evaluations from last semester. Pretty good, overall. Really good, actually, or at least so I think -- strangely enough, I don't think U of A does departmental- or university-wide comparisons like MTSU, so my data is somewhat de-contextualized. Nonetheless, judging from the quantitative and qualitative parts of the evaluations, most of my students seemed really happy. One of the skills I've especially worked on last semester was giving bad news, usually in terms of a grade, and that seems to have paid off -- I almost entirely avoided those grade-embittered students who have tended to drag my evaluation scores down in the past..