No more pencils, no more books…

Hooray!  I’ve finished my four-week summer presession class.   Of course, I am teaching the first four weeks of an online course now, but this does mean that I don’t have to be at work at 8 AM every day.

In my online course there are 18 people enrolled, and all 18 have logged on to the web site already, before the first assignments are due.  This is a first.  Every other time I’ve taught it, there have been from 2 to 5 people who just never got around to doing anything, including dropping the course, despite repeated emails.  I know, some people don’t read their email very often.  But you would think (if, unlike me, you didn’t know better) that a person who signs up for an online course would, particularly around the time the course is supposed to start, read his or her email.

So this time, big improvement on that score.  Now if I could just break people of the habit of writing for an online course as if they were text-messaging.  I give clear instructions about using standard punctuation, capitalization, and spelling, but some people just can’t manage it.  One semester I had a student whose first several assignments were written ALL IN CAPITAL LETTERS BECAUSE I GUESS WRITING FOR THE WEB IS KIND OF LIKE SENDING A TELEGRAM.  I explained to this person that this is the equivalent of shouting.

One thing that always annoys me is people who won’t capitalize the word “I”.  It always feels like false modesty to me.

Okay, enough bitching.  Like I say, this group has managed an historic first by all actually logging in.  Maybe they’ll all turn in the first two assignments, too.  Stay tuned.

9 Responses to “No more pencils, no more books…”

  1. Erin says:

    yeah “i” fall into that habit quite a bit. :)

  2. Allen says:

    There’s this key that says “shift” on it…

  3. Erin says:

    there’s this idea i have about personal style…my personal style is to write in all lowercase and use excessive punctuation. i only use this in blog and IM.
    it’s just me.

  4. Erin says:

    but i guess it’s just you to hate it. :) to each their own.

  5. Allen says:

    Well, I can’t say I’m enamored of that personal style, but it is up to you. However, as I recall, when you write formally you are able to break away from the personal style and slavishly follow the conventions of the oppressor. As the oppressor, I appreciate that.

  6. Cabell says:

    People who won’t capitalize in their online writing come across to me as self-impressed teenage Compuserve users. I cannot shake this impression.

  7. Reno says:

    Happy semi-vacation!

  8. K says:

    I just can’t write without doing proper capitalisation and punctuation. It comes out of my hand without thinking about it.

    Maybe it’s because my mother is an English teacher. I have also been mocked for my perfectly punctuated SMS. (The semi-colons are right there! They are not hidden!)

  9. Cabell says:

    K: I want to be SMS buddies with you. I almost went spare when I couldn’t find the APOSTROPHE on my cell (it was hidden, but I finally got it).

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