Sunday, 24 November 2013

The Confessions Of Lecture Dynamics...

You get 3 types of students.
1. The student that attends every lecture (The Full Timer)
2. The student that attends most lectures until it slowly gets to the end of term or an upcoming deadline, in which they then take a optional approach (The Part Timer)
3. That Student you don't see until finals in your third year. (The Absentee)



From the perspective of the lecturer, they most likely look across the lecture hall for an hour, book bashing their latest edition of made up theories whilst inside despise the invention of the mobile phone, tablet device and Facebook as they fully well know no one is really listening. This kind of environment you can find in any lecture, in any university, in any part of the world.

Yet to the students, it's a whole different story.

The Dynamics.
Where you sit in a lecture all varies on what type of student you are. Lets start with the full timer. The full timer seeks comfort in the front rows, leaving enough space between them and the rest of the student population therefore to avoid any shrapnel incidences as they quickly erode their pen and paper in fast paced note taking.

The part timer you tend find in the middle of the lecture hall, sat on their iPad and iPhone, flicking through last nights club photos on Facebook assessing who went home with who and who is stalking who. They vaguely take notes but don't stress too much as they know they can catch the lecture slides online. This is the type of student you wouldn't find at a 9am nor a 5am. The part timer occasionally walks in late and has no choice but to sit on the front row, deeply shamed in an ocean of red as the lecturer shoots daggers from the podium.



High up in the gods, right in the far back, so far it's almost dark, you will find the occasional group of Absentees. You don't make eye contact nor do you attempt to look cool to fit in with them. You'll only fail. In the rare appearances that they do make it to lectures, and when I say rare I mean the day you see an absentee in a lecture you know you're in your third year about to hit exams, they tend to be the ones that will actually address the stunned lecturer with an extremely intellectual and philosophical point. The rest of the student population internally die, knowing all those hours put into attending lectures could never generate a statement as flawless as that.

Rules to bare in mind before you enter a lecture hall as follows:

  1. Always check the room is empty before you walk in. Nothing says 'stupid' like opening a lecture hall door to see a room with 300 economics students staring back at you.
  2. Always check you've walked into the right lecture. Nothing says 'ground swallow me up whole' as you settle into your spot on a seat only to realise this isn't 'Introduction to the Hsitory of Art' and is in fact 'Advanced Social Theory'. You quickly scarper only to be followed by a full lecture hall of laughter. 
  3. This ones for the ladies - If you have been to the toilet before you enter a lecture, ALWAYS check your skirt isn't tucked into your tights. Heaven knows, you don't need an audience for that endurance.
  4. This one is for all you social networkers - At least TRY to make it subtle that your sat tweeting or 'poking' your mate who's sat three seats up. No one naturally stares at their crotch for two minutes only to glance across the lecture hall and give a cheeky smile. That's a thought none of us need in our heads.
  5. Don't be a know it all. No one likes that guy who puts his hand up and tries to disprove the point the lecturer has just made. Just because you've spent one term studying 'An introduction to Philosophy' doesn't mean you know more then your lecturer who has been in the profession for over twenty years. That's just embarrassing. 

Stick to these rules and remember these dynamics and you'll be just fine. Oh and one last one, no matter how hard you tried to cover it, your lecturer will always spot who went out last night and who didn't. So at least have the common courtesy to not show up to the lecture in stead of sitting there, front row (Yes you were late as you overslept) yawning with a 'I love Vodka Tuesdays' stamped across your forehead making it obvious you really don't want to be there.

It's a jungle out there in the world of academia ;) 



L.Bel xoxo
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