Wednesday, August 11, 2010

New Faculty Advice

I found this post from Inside Higher Ed to be very interesting.  Here's blogger Rob Weir's list of things to remember, for all new faculty:

"Below is a checklist of things you should do right now — as in yesterday. Copy it, do everything on it, and thank me later. These things won’t make the first-week chaos go away, but if you dispatch these details you’ll increase your odds of arriving to week two in possession of partial sanity.
  • Syllabus sent to department secretary for copying.
  • Parking sticker and campus ID obtained.
  • Checked with bookstore for an update on my order.
  • All necessary paperwork completed at HR.
  • My office is stocked with supplies.
  • All necessary keys are in my possession.
  • I have visited each of my classrooms and have tested the equipment in each.
  • Library specialist meetings scheduled.
  • Needed AV equipment has been reserved.
  • I have jumped through needed IT hoops."
Weir's points are excellent, particularly at a large campus like UT.  The rest of the article counters some assumptions you might have made!  Here's my two cents: if you teach using Blackboard, start the online training now.  Once you complete the exercises, it may take two days before IT can process your approval and let you into your course.  And definitely check out your rooms.  There's a wide variety of classroom situations here on campus, so be prepared!  And finally, when you visit the rooms, log your walking time between classes.  When I first arrived, I didn't realize how long it would take to walk down Volunteer or Andy Holt to get to some buildings. In fact, I still encounter building acronyms that are unfamiliar--and I've been here nearly a year.  Finally, it is worth setting up Blackboard just so you can contact your students early (emailing the entire roster at once is handy) and give them a way to contact you or your department.  If something goes wrong on the first day--such as the room gets switched at the last minute--they'll know who to call or text!  Enjoy classes next week, everyone.

1 comment:

  1. As an instructional technologist, I LOVE the check equipment in the room recomendation! This will give the professor time to find asistance and avoid first day tech frustration!