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Attolia

Update - I am livid, talk me down please...

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Ok, so this is where we are....

 

 

She found an English class that would let her in. This means she is now overloaded and she will not lose her full time status.  

 

Her Dean/Advisor said "no way".  He says something, somewhere is terribly messed up.  He was extremely irritated that someone thought they could just remove her from a class without his permission.  He has to approve this kind of move.  He hasn't approved it.  No one has even asked him for approval.  Her class is still there in her schedule and in her registration portal. 

 

When she showed to class today the professor said, "oh, you are going to audit?".  She said that dd can't be in the class and she won't give her any grades for work but she is welcome to listen in.

 

I called the office for languages.  The lady said that sometimes they do require interviews and they can schedule one for her but not anytime in the next two days and drop/add ends Wednesday morning.  This is just super confusing because even according to their own guidelines, they only do this for Spanish 101.  Again, a friend has had 4 years and a perfect IB score and hasn't been asked to leave.

 

IMHO I would not want my student in this section - the instructor is already "prejudiced" against your daughter!

If you continue make sure she takes good "notes" to see if any "black-ball" is taking place.  Sorry this is a reality.

 

Hopefully you will have a good outcome.

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IMHO I would not want my student in this section - the instructor is already "prejudiced" against your daughter!

If you continue make sure she takes good "notes" to see if any "black-ball" is taking place.  Sorry this is a reality.

 

Hopefully you will have a good outcome.

 

 

Yes, this is already in DD's mind.  It is one reason why she has decided that if she can still go to Spain without this class, she will drop it since she was able to add an english class.

Edited by Attolia
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They would consider her to have the equivalent fo 102 and cleared to go to Spain without an official 102 class.  

 

I guess then she would keep the English class?  How tough will it be for her to catch up?

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Heh, actually, I would expect the grad student to be treating her with kid gloves at this point -- whoever coordinates the grad student teaching is not going to be very happy with having this mess to clean up.

 

But I suspect the entire ordeal has put a bad taste in her mouth as far as the class is concerned. 

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I guess then she would keep the English class?  How tough will it be for her to catch up?

 

 

She went today and she really doesn't think it will be that bad.  Anything English/reading/writing comes so easy to her.  If it were a different type of class, it would be more stressful.

Edited by Attolia
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Heh, actually, I would expect the grad student to be treating her with kid gloves at this point -- whoever coordinates the grad student teaching is not going to be very happy with having this mess to clean up.

 

But I suspect the entire ordeal has put a bad taste in her mouth as far as the class is concerned.

The entire ordeal has me wondering what makes "elites" so elite. LOL!! The dept seems so unorganized and my kids have never been taught by grad students at their lowlies. ;)

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The entire ordeal has me wondering what makes "elites" so elite. LOL!! The dept seems so unorganized and my kids have never been taught by grad students at their lowlies. ;)

 

 

This department has definitely come across super disorganized in this process.  Maybe because DD's prof simply didn't follow the procedure of sending her for an interview?  They say the lateness was because of the snow, which is more understandable since they extended the drop/add period.

 

Overall, dd has been far more impressed with other departments than this one.

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The entire ordeal has me wondering what makes "elites" so elite. LOL!! The dept seems so unorganized and my kids have never been taught by grad students at their lowlies. ;)

 

I wonder why the tippy top schools use grad students too.  My guys have never had them as profs.  TAs were used for recitations (extra classes to assist with tougher concepts or homework problems), but never as the main lecturer.

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The entire ordeal has me wondering what makes "elites" so elite. LOL!! The dept seems so unorganized and my kids have never been taught by grad students at their lowlies. ;)

 

 

I wonder why the tippy top schools use grad students too.  My guys have never had them as profs.  TAs were used for recitations (extra classes to assist with tougher concepts or homework problems), but never as the main lecturer.

 

 

 

For what it is worth, this is DD's first class to be taught by a grad student.  She has had TA's for discussion groups before.  She even had a TA for her lab advisor, but she has had professors for all of her other classes.  I cant really understand how there is such a lack of spanish professors in the world. It seems they have been understaffed there and can't seem to resolve it.

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I wonder why the tippy top schools use grad students too.  My guys have never had them as profs.  TAs were used for recitations (extra classes to assist with tougher concepts or homework problems), but never as the main lecturer.

 

For some of the more research-intensive schools, because the professors are busy trying to publish enough to survive.  They often tend to have the professors only teach one or two classes a semester. Frankly, with some professors you would be much better off with a graduate student, especially if in a basic class. I know of a couple who are definitively terrible teachers but are very good at research, and they keep teaching the general education classes. 

 

If you're in honors classes or at a school that focuses heavily on undergraduate education, you're a lot less likely to find graduate students used heavily, and the ones that do are much more senior. And, of course, at a school that doesn't have a graduate program, it won't happen -- but then you also don't have the higher-level classes that can be taught when there IS a graduate program.

 

This specific one sounds like she was poorly mentored and/or doesn't listen very well. We weren't given full responsibility until our 3rd year, unless someone entered with significant teaching experience (for example, a certified high school teacher looking to go back for a PhD). 

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Ok, We have an official email from the Professor that DD's dean suggested could resolve this matter and we have answers.

 

This is simply a lack of communication with dd's professor.  She wasn't supposed to just remove her from the class and tell her that her level was too high.  She was supposed to tell DD to schedule an interview.  

 

Dear ___________,

Let me assure that we just want what is best for you, and we know that Spain will offer you a great experience. You will not be dropped from the program.
It is our responsibility to make sure you are placed correctly in 102. Your instructor was supposed to send you to do an interview because she needed to verify your level; it is your 3 years of experience and your performance the few days of classes. 
 
I could see you tomorrow between _______________ at ________________Drive. Let me know. Otherwise, please call 919-________ to set up a placement appointment.
 
Best
Prof. _________________

 

 

So her instructor dropped the ball. She didn't explain, and she didn't send your dd for an interview. 

 

Everything in this email should have been said in the first place! 

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So her instructor dropped the ball. She didn't explain, and she didn't send your dd for an interview. 

 

Everything in this email should have been said in the first place! 

 

 

Yes, precisely.

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Please ask your daughter to wait at least 24 hours before dropping this class. She has every reason to be frustrated, but it is rarely a good to make an important decision out of frustration.

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For some of the more research-intensive schools, because the professors are busy trying to publish enough to survive.   

 

FWIW, U Rochester is an extremely research intensive school.  Roughly 80% of undergrads actively participate in research.  It's what draws many students (including my middle son) to the school.  In at least a couple of his classes he was told his textbook was a guide, but what they'd be learning about in class was too new for the textbooks.  Still no grad students teaching courses.  Some schools might blame it on that I suppose, but it's not that way everywhere.

 

My first guess is because it's cheaper for the school and students will still go there because of its elite status.

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I wonder why the tippy top schools use grad students too.  My guys have never had them as profs.  

 

My DD had several humanities classes taught entirely by grad students, and they were of good quality.

 

Why use grad students to teach? Because then the department can pay the grad student a stipend and/or give them a tuition waiver, and the grad student does not have to go work night shifts at a ware house to support herself while writing her thesis.

 

In the sciences, it is standard to pay grad students and use them as TAs, but many humanities departments do not fully fund their grad students, which makes it difficult and expensive for them.  And it's more difficult to find a teaching gig for grad TAs because humanities have no recitations and no labs, which are typical grad TA jobs.

ETA: And while NSF grants in sciences can include funds for professors to pay grad students as research assistants, the funding situation in humanities is much more dire and profs usually do not have any money to do that. 

Edited by regentrude
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Glad to hear the issue has been resolved. I am sure the grad student is in deep trouble. the department should have given the instructor clear instructions on how to handle these cases; it sounds like some miscommunication between leadership and TA. 

 

I would encourage your DD to not drop the class immediately, but to first give it a try. This teacher may not be a  bad teacher.

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My DD had several humanities classes taught entirely by grad students, and they were of good quality.

 

Why use grad students to teach? Because then the department can pay the grad student a stipend and/or give them a tuition waiver, and the grad student does not have to go work night shifts at a ware house to support herself.

 

At UR, the grad students get paid to research - at least - those I know about.  Then they could be in charge of recitations.

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At UR, the grad students get paid to research - at least - those I know about.  Then they could be in charge of recitations.

 

At our college it's either/ or. Either they are paid for research or they are paid for teaching recitations.

Whether students are paid for research depends on whether their advisor has outside funding that includes money for grad student RAs.

Students who work for professors who don't have grants that can pay their grad students have to teach and are paid by the department for their teaching. Our department tries to distribute the funds so that all grad students are supported and sometimes split a year, a semester TA and a semester RA (if prof has money). Our department has no funds to pay students for research. From what I know, this setup seems to be fairly typical.

Edited by regentrude
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I'm so sorry you are going through this.  I haven't read the whole thread, so forgive me if this has been suggested before, but I have found that the most helpful language prep for going abroad was something that worked on my ability to be understood (speed and accent) (something like Pimsleur tapes) and lots of reading/watching practice on my own. Reading increases my functional vocabulary faster than anything I have found and lots of listening, preferably to something I am interested in where I know the vocabulary (like a favourite audiobook or an interesting tv program) raises my ability to understand what people are saying.  People are usually good at understanding mangled grammar, which is why an actual class, after a certain point, is less useful to me when I am actually going to have to be using the language than more vocabulary and listening skills.

 

For what it is worth, the best taught class I had in college was taught by a grad student.  The grad student seemed to remember what was difficult about learning the subject and did a much better job at the actual teaching part.  They had more patience, in general, and were more available for extra help.  They also seemed very motivated to do a good job with their students.  I had a bunch of grad student taught classes at university.  None were as bad as the few awful ones I had with full professors.

 

Nan

Edited by Nan in Mass
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FWIW, U Rochester is an extremely research intensive school.  Roughly 80% of undergrads actively participate in research.  It's what draws many students (including my middle son) to the school.  In at least a couple of his classes he was told his textbook was a guide, but what they'd be learning about in class was too new for the textbooks.  Still no grad students teaching courses.  Some schools might blame it on that I suppose, but it's not that way everywhere.

 

My first guess is because it's cheaper for the school and students will still go there because of its elite status.

 

Right, it's only some of them. There are some others that maintain a very high commitment to undergraduate education despite their research-intensive status.

 

Honestly, I also would think that their less orthodox approach to general education would support that; fewer "cattle-call" classes designed specifically to tick the boxes for uninterested undergraduates. But that is pure speculation on my part. :) 

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At our college it's either/ or. Either they are paid for research or they are paid for teaching recitations.

Whether students are paid for research depends on whether their advisor has outside funding that includes money for grad student RAs.

Students who work for professors who don't have grants that can pay their grad students have to teach and are paid by the department for their teaching. Our department tries to distribute the funds so that all grad students are supported and sometimes split a year, a semester TA and a semester RA (if prof has money). Our department has no funds to pay students for research. From what I know, this setup seems to be fairly typical.

 

That may be where UR being a research powerhouse has an edge.  They get quite a bit of funding in from various sources, and again, the vast majority go there specifically for the research opportunities.  It's what separated them from some other schools when my guy was looking.  Many have research, this one had a research culture.  It was really evident to my guy on one of his overnight stays.  Even as an undergrad, my guy got paid to do research from sophomore year on, although at the beginning he was certainly more of a clean up guy.  The last 2 years was actual paid research working with other undergrads, grad students, and the prof.  Grad students make more than undergrads.

 

I can't say what happens in the humanities courses.  I don't know enough about them.  His experience is all with science and/or medical research.  His specific researching the last couple of years was about how youngsters acquire language skills.  The first year it was with G Proteins in cells.

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Right, it's only some of them. There are some others that maintain a very high commitment to undergraduate education despite their research-intensive status.

 

Honestly, I also would think that their less orthodox approach to general education would support that; fewer "cattle-call" classes designed specifically to tick the boxes for uninterested undergraduates. But that is pure speculation on my part. :)

 

I think it's good speculation.  That was another plus for the school for my guy.  He could focus on and explore things he liked.

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I wonder why the tippy top schools use grad students too. My guys have never had them as profs. TAs were used for recitations (extra classes to assist with tougher concepts or homework problems), but never as the main lecturer.

At my local “lowlyâ€ðŸ˜‚ lower level French classes (101 and 102) are taught by a combination of long tenured professors and I’m guessing adjuncts or grad students. There seems to be a shortage. Composition classes (so again English 101 and 102 type classes) taught by English grad students and they get a partial tuition waver. No TAs.

I was sitting on the subway and there was someone (guessing a grad student) from an “eliteâ€â€™school 😂 grading booklets for one of those first year required core seminars in humanities (I know about the school because booklets were printed w school name, cute!)

OP, if my child was asking for advice, I’d counsel she keeps a Spanish class of some sort. Immersion is great but even better the stronger the foundation you’re going in with. Unless she just wants to have a fun summer in which case, she should just do what she wants :)

Edited by madteaparty
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If I were your daughter, I wouldn't drop at all.  Unless she gets something in writing from someone in authority that she won't need the class.   Then I'd continue to go to the class to get the speaking practice without the danger of a bad grade given by an annoyed grad student.  

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The one silver lining that I have noticed with this situation is that apparently in just a few classes and with no turned in honework, Attolia's daughter impressed the grad student as being head and shoulders above in ability vs the other kids in the class - including some that had more Spanish instruction years than she did.

 

That's a pat on the back for her and whomever taught her.

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Please ask your daughter to wait at least 24 hours before dropping this class. She has every reason to be frustrated, but it is rarely a good to make an important decision out of frustration.

 

 

Glad to hear the issue has been resolved. I am sure the grad student is in deep trouble. the department should have given the instructor clear instructions on how to handle these cases; it sounds like some miscommunication between leadership and TA. 

 

I would encourage your DD to not drop the class immediately, but to first give it a try. This teacher may not be a  bad teacher.

 

 

At my local “lowlyâ€ðŸ˜‚ lower level French classes (101 and 102) are taught by a combination of long tenured professors and I’m guessing adjuncts or grad students. There seems to be a shortage. Composition classes (so again English 101 and 102 type classes) taught by English grad students and they get a partial tuition waver. No TAs.

I was sitting on the subway and there was someone (guessing a grad student) from an “eliteâ€â€™school 😂 grading booklets for one of those first year required core seminars in humanities (I know about the school because booklets were printed w school name, cute!)

OP, if my child was asking for advice, I’d counsel she keeps a Spanish class of some sort. Immersion is great but even better the stronger the foundation you’re going in with. Unless she just wants to have a fun summer in which case, she should just do what she wants :)

 

 

If I were your daughter, I wouldn't drop at all.  Unless she gets something in writing from someone in authority that she won't need the class.   Then I'd continue to go to the class to get the speaking practice without the danger of a bad grade given by an annoyed grad student.  

 

 

I guess then she would keep the English class?  How tough will it be for her to catch up?

 

 

 

Her plan is to interview at 11 and just honestly give the interview her best and trust the process.  If she is placed out of 102 then she will drop it, trusting the process.  She does feel like she knows everything on the syllabus.  She was hopeful for more speaking practice since she feels weak (yay to self teaching :lol: ).  She is also very excited about this english class she added.  The prof seems great.  If the spanish head thinks that dd should stay in 102, we'll see what she decides.  Knowing my girl, she will stay overloaded and not drop a thing.  This might not be wise since she is taking an intensive organic chem class this semester.  But talking her into dropping an english class would be like prying candy from a child.

 

 

ETA - she heard back from the head of the Spain program and her recommendation was to drop it if they thought she didn't need it.  If they consider dd to have covered the material then it definitely won't compromise her admissions to their program.

Edited by Attolia
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Switching to audit on the Spanish class (even though it's what the grad student original suggested) might work as well; that way if she gets overwhelmed, she can not participate in assignments that are a lot of work, but still engage in the speaking-focused portion of the class.

 

Also, do they have a "spanish conversation table" or something similar? At my grad school, there was a japanese table at a specific hour at lunch; it was free to wander in and out, run by a japanese instructor and a humanities instructor who was fluent in japanese, but people would sit there who wanted to practice their japanese. Ask the department. Maybe they'd be interested in starting one, if they don't? Pizza is cheap and undergrads will show up to anything for free pizza. 

 

Almost anything. It didn't work for my math sessions. 

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Switching to audit on the Spanish class (even though it's what the grad student original suggested) might work as well; that way if she gets overwhelmed, she can not participate in assignments that are a lot of work, but still engage in the speaking-focused portion of the class.

 

Also, do they have a "spanish conversation table" or something similar? At my grad school, there was a japanese table at a specific hour at lunch; it was free to wander in and out, run by a japanese instructor and a humanities instructor who was fluent in japanese, but people would sit there who wanted to practice their japanese. Ask the department. Maybe they'd be interested in starting one, if they don't? Pizza is cheap and undergrads will show up to anything for free pizza. 

 

Almost anything. It didn't work for my math sessions. 

 

 

Hmmm...I'll ask her to check into that.  To be honest, she has several spanish speaking friends.  She just needs to speak with them.  She is such a perfectionist, she knows it isn't perfect so she holds back.  I have tried to convince her that she isn't going to learn without lots of mistakes.  

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Hmmm...I'll ask her to check into that.  To be honest, she has several spanish speaking friends.  She just needs to speak with them.  She is such a perfectionist, she knows it isn't perfect so she holds back.  I have tried to convince her that she isn't going to learn without lots of mistakes.  

 

This is what inhibited me in German too. :/ Perfectionism is challenging!

 

Unfortunately she's underage -- because the best tip I ever got was to have a shot first ;) 

 

But more seriously, getting into a more relaxed environment -- but still one where people are expected to be making mistakes -- may help. It might also be worth asking the spanish department if there's anyone who would be interested in a group conversation practice -- even if they are not saying it perfectly, it is amazing how well you can get along in most countries with a truly horrible grasp of the grammar, as long as you can work on the vocabulary and the circumlocution when you forget the vocabulary. 

 

I mean, if a visiting tourist says "toilet where is?" we know what they mean and direct them in the appropriate direction. 

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Unfortunately she's underage -- because the best tip I ever got was to have a shot first ;)

 

 

 

 

:lol:  :lol:  :lol:

 

Technically she won't be underage in Germany or Spain but, you know, I think I will keep that advice to myself  :lol:

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:lol: :lol: :lol:

 

Technically she won't be underage in Germany or Spain but, you know, I think I will keep that advice to myself :lol:

Lol, there was just a whole thread on here recently where they'd done a scientific study showing foreign language learning proficiency improved after a drink (not getting hammered, just a drink). The perfectionism really can get in the way, apparently ;)

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At youngest's school there are often some postings for students wanting to exchange language practice. "You help me with English and I will help you with Arabic" type of thing. That's what he used anyway. I would think there might be similar for Spanish even though it's more common.

 

Otherwise, it sounds like all will work out fine for her. I am sure you both would have preferred to skip the stress test involved though. Still... there's something to the saying, "All's well that ends well!"

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Did I read that right, Organic Chem this semester?    Holy Moly!  

I change my opinion, drop that Spanish class like a hot potato.   

 

 

I tried my absolute best to talk her out of that freshman year.  But she was H*bent on taking it and getting it out of the way.  My thought process was that she might drop the Bio part of her major and would have gone through that torture for nothing.  

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UPDATE

 

Ok, so here we go.....interview done and final conclusion.  

 

She was super nice.  If only the instructor would have communicated clearly to dd in the beginning none of this stress was necessary.  I guess they had a plan all along but the instructor didn't communicate it to dd at all.  

 

She thinks that DD knows all of the material and so the class is a waste of her time.  She has given DD two options.  

 

Option #1 (the highly recommended option)

Drop the class

DD can have a free tutor to practice with this semester.

DD can join a speaking group for more practice too.

 

Option #2 

Stay in 102

 

 

DD is dropping it like a hot potato.  She doesn't like this grad student instructor.  She feels like it will be trouble for her.  She loves the english class.

 

 

Thanks for stressing with us through this. I hate it was all so unnecessary :(

 

 

Edited by Attolia
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Thank you for the update!  I'm sorry about the hassle and stress, but it sounds like everything worked out well! 

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I responded to these emails last night, but my post went poof. I'm glad that she heard back from the person in the Spanish department, and that this won't impact going to Spain. It still doesn't make sense at all. At the very least, there is miscommunication somewhere.

 

 

I changed the order of your posts to how they happened chronologically for your DD. The things she was told don't match.

 

I guess it doesn't matter anymore, since she has an interview time. It would still bug me, and it also would make me nervous to trust that she would be allowed into the summer program without the class that she had to sign something saying she would complete this semester.
 

 

 

 

I am copying the actual (name edited out) email from the prof this morning.

 

Hola ____________,

 

I hope this message finds you well after this unexpected snow vacation! I am writing to you to let you know that you actually place out of 102, as your prior experience shows. If you have any questions let me know, and remember that drop-add is coming up quickly on the 24th.
 
Un saludo cordial,
__________

 

 

 

 

The prof then emailed back with this reply

 

 

Buenos días __________,

 

I understand your concern, but I must follow the program’s placement guidelines. You can get an interview with the program directors at [email protected] as confirmation if you feel this is incorrect. Let me know if you have any other questions.
 
Un saludo,
_______________________
 
 
ETA which we then contacted but they said they didn't have an interview available soon and this needs to be sorted out ASAP.
 
After this email (above), dd went to class early to talk to her and she told dd she could not be in the class, that she needed to drop it, but she could listen in.  None of her friends who have taken 3 and 4 in high school are being asked to interview.

... The professor (a new grad student) says that she doesn't meet guidelines to be in there b professor (a new grad student) says that she doesn't meet guidelines to be in there because she has had too much Spanish.  The thing is, DD used the department's guide to find her class.  This class is for those with more than 2 years of Spanish and DD had 3 years in High School.  ... She knows several people in the class who had 3 years of Spanish and they aren't being asked to leave.  DD went to class early today and asked her about it and the prof said "I am sorry.  I also think that this is unfair. The truth is that this is a decision from the director for "many reasons and factors".  What in the world?  They have reasons and factors they can't disclose for choosing DD to leave a class that she really wants/needs before going to Spain this summer?  When dd said she needed the class the professor said "Well, you undercut yourself, you'll be fine."  

 

... They don't even know her spanish ability.  She has had homework but nothing that is turned in. I want to know what factors they can be using?

 

 

ETA - Also she spent over $100 on web access for the portal. Can this be refunded?  She can sell the bazillion dollar textbooks but what about the portal?

 

 

 

 

To be honest, the class is easy for her so far and it IS busy work, but it is where she would place according to the guidelines, she will have the next two courses covered over summer, and she doesn't feel confident in speaking so she wanted this class.  Also, she hasn't turned in a single thing so how could they know that is is review so far?

 

ETA - the bigger deal is timing.  It is simply too late.  If they had addressed this in the first week she would be disappointed but fine with the switch.

 

 

No, she’s didn’t take one because she didn’t feel confident enough in her Spanish. Yet they tell her she is too advanced? She has a friend in the class who scored a 5 on the IB and has 4 years of Spanish. She hasn’t been asked to leave. Keep in mind, DD hasn’t spoken to this professor in person, hasn’t turned in any assignments. There isn’t any reason for her to dislike DD or to judge her ability.

 

 

 

 

 

Ok, We have an official email from the Professor that DD's dean suggested could resolve this matter and we have answers.

 

This is simply a lack of communication with dd's professor.  She wasn't supposed to just remove her from the class and tell her that her level was too high.  She was supposed to tell DD to schedule an interview.  

 

Dear ___________,

Let me assure that we just want what is best for you, and we know that Spain will offer you a great experience. You will not be dropped from the program.
It is our responsibility to make sure you are placed correctly in 102. Your instructor was supposed to send you to do an interview because she needed to verify your level; it is your 3 years of experience and your performance the few days of classes. 
 
I could see you tomorrow between _______________ at ________________Drive. Let me know. Otherwise, please call 919-________ to set up a placement appointment.
 
Best
Prof. _________________

 

 

 

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The grad student told your daughter the department made the decision that DD was in the wrong class; but the department said that your daughter was being given the opportunity to place out of the class because of her performance in the few days of class. Your daughter has no performance in the class. You said she had not spoken to the professor. I'm not sure if that means your daughter has spoken at all in class, but even if your daughter has spoken Spanish in class, is that adequate to judge her performance? (I have a college kid who speaks a foreign language beautifully, but he has no attention to detail, so his writing in the foreign language is awful, even at the most basic level: translate this English word to foreign language word. I know that doesn't describe your daughter, but there would be no way to tell that until she turns something in for class. 

 

I'm sorry she had to go through the craziness of yesterday. I hope she has a great time in Spain.

 

 

Edited by *LC
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Great resolution! 

 

I hope it became apparent that the instructor told your dd none of the relevant information. 

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The grad student told your daughter the department made the decision that DD was in the wrong class; but the department said that your daughter was being given the opportunity to place out of the class because of her performance in the few days of class. Your daughter has no performance in the class. You said she had not spoken to the professor. I'm not sure if that means your daughter has spoken at all in class, but even if your daughter has spoken Spanish in class, is that adequate to judge her performance? (I have a college kid who speaks a foreign language beautifully, but he has no attention to detail, so his writing in the foreign language is awful, even at the most basic level: translate this English word to foreign language word. I know that doesn't describe your daughter, but there would be no way to tell that until she turns something in for class. 

 

I'm sorry she had to go through the craziness of yesterday. I hope she has a great time in Spain.

 

 

Yes, this part is still a huge mystery.  We are still very unclear on how the decision to have dd place out was made when so many others with spanish 3 and 4 under their belts haven't been asked to drop the class.  It really doesn't make sense.  The only thing I can think is that when the instructor said that these things come from above her, she was speaking of the guidelines and for some reason, unknown to dd and, she determined that dd didn't need to be in that class.  What I can't figure out is how she determined this?  I asked dd again today....you have turned nothing in?  She claims nothing has been turned in.  I asked her if she has said much in class and her reply is "I've said not a word in class".  So this entire part is a huge mystery to me.  I do wonder if she has student's confused?  In either case, dd interviewed with the head professor to double check placement.  She has been assured by the language department and the Global ed department over Spain that if she places out she will be ok with going to Spain.  We are having to move forward happy to have full time status, a language tutor, placement out of 102, and an english class based on writing and fairy tales that dd is way more excited about than spanish  :lol:  

 

Her friend with Spanish 4 and a passing IB score is on the same scholarship as dd and is going to Spain this summer as well.  I seriously wonder if she has somehow confused them?  Although, physically one is white and the other isn't  :lol:

Edited by Attolia
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UPDATE

 

Ok, so here we go.....interview done and final conclusion.  

 

She was super nice.  If only the instructor would have communicated clearly to dd in the beginning none of this stress was necessary.  I guess they had a plan all along but the instructor didn't communicate it to dd at all.  

 

She thinks that DD knows all of the material and so the class is a waste of her time.  She has given DD two options.  

 

Option #1 (the highly recommended option)

Drop the class

DD can have a free tutor to practice with this semester.

DD can join a speaking group for more practice too.

 

Option #2 

Stay in 102

 

 

DD is dropping it like a hot potato.  She doesn't like this grad student instructor.  She feels like it will be trouble for her.  She loves the english class.

 

 

Thanks for stressing with us through this. I hate it was all so unnecessary :(

 

Glad it all worked out. Option 1 sounds great.

 

My oldest ended up wanting to drop the last class she needed for her study abroad program. I can't remember the exact reason. It required a "lot" of emails/conversations with me about what-ifs, and one simple in-person meeting with the person in charge of the program to get the okay. She ended up auditing the class for the speaking practice without needing to do the grammar-based homework. She loved her study abroad program and finished her foreign language minor while there. 

 

I'm excited that this ended so well for your daughter, an English class she loves and no need to do Spanish busywork.

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That's awesome!

 

The free tutor will help her much more at getter over actually speaking Spanish than the Spanish 102 class would have. Trinqueta did 4 years of typical high school Spanish and was reading and writing well but refused to try to speak even to (or maybe, especially to) dh or me. Six months of Homeschool Spanish Academy has her actually participating in family conversations with aunts and uncles and cousins. A little practice with someone who is good at getting a student to talk and gently correcting their errors makes a huge difference in fluency. It's not something that just any native speaker can do though, it takes some knowledge about language learning and some practice on the part of the teacher too.

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I'm a big fan of tutoring, so it sounds like a great solution to me, assuming she will be dedicated to getting to the tutor.

 

I suspect the new grad student is a bit insecure, and BSing a little bit about how the decision was made. Glad your daughter won't have to deal with that mess anymore.

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That sounds awesome! Really glad they found a good solution for her, and good for her for advocating for herself!

 

(At my large public university, grad students taught certain classes. I can’t think of any I really thought were terrible. I can think of some that were really excellent teachers for the intro level classes. I also had a lot of full professors teach intro level classes. Some were excellent, and a couple were terrible.)

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Another vote that the tutor will be far more helpful than the class. At the 102 level, they might be speaking in class, but they are definitely not conversing. 

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