A Successful Start to the Semester

Other than speed-dating, I can’t think of an occasion where initial impressions matter more than the first day of a semester’s class. Even if we’re teaching a course in which students might not have been highly motivated to enroll, and do so only because it’s part of their Core or major requirements, we still have an opportunity to change their perceptions. For students who are anxious about our course–perhaps it’s a difficult prerequisite, or they’ve been unsuccessful in the subject previously–we have a chance to to take the edge of that anxiety and get them thinking about how they can be successful. For any course, though, first impressions matter. There’s no other point in the semester where a short period of time can have such an outsized effect on the course. Continue reading “A Successful Start to the Semester”