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Best Practices: Assumptions We Can Make About One Another

In workshops I had often shared my syllabus “Assumptions” page—that is, until Amir Hussain improved upon mine so dramatically that now I share only his. An edited excerpt follows:

Assumptions I Make About You

  1. You have made an informed choice to be a member of this class. You have read the syllabus and know the workload required. On average, you should spend three hours on your own (reading, studying, making notes, working on assignments, etc.) for every hour that you are in class.
  2. You will do the required reading. This means that you will often have to read something more than once in order to fully understand it (remember the 3:1 ratio in the first assumption).
  3. You will share your personality, knowledge, skills, and special expertise with the rest of us throughout this semester.

Assumptions You Can Make About Me

  1. I will give you the respect that I ask you to give me and the other members of this class.
  2. I will do my best to help you, but I cannot learn the material for you.
  3. I will encourage and be receptive to constructive comments about my teaching (as an example, “You’re ugly and your mother dresses you funny” is NOT a constructive comment).

—Amir Hussain
Department of Theological Studies
Loyola Marymount University

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Published In

6-Feb-09


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