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A Ranty Rant About a Rant-Stuff
#1
Definitely off topic and ranty. But I have to let it out. 

Background: I am going to school. I have a lot of GI Bill money sitting out there so why not? Thus the primary reason for my current educational endeavor is financial. Crucify me if you want. I am taking a program I am not particularly interested in but it is all on-line. With the price of gas what it is and all the C19 BS going on, on-line is perfect. No wasting my time/money driving around and no playing masky-masky-jabby-jabby. Still, I give it 100%.  

Problem: I find the older I get, the less I am able to communicate effectively. Additionally, I struggle trying to understand how/why people do what they do.

I won't bore whomever decides to read this with all the nitty-gritty. To make it short, I had a disagreement with one of my instructors over an assignment. The instructions for the thing were demonstrably unreconcilable with the grading criteria. I spoke up, provided evidence, and voiced my opinion. Did my best to be tactful and take the high road. For my effort, I got gas lit. Was told maybe I did not read things sufficiently. It would be too much work to make adjustments. 

I let it go because in the end, it's not that important. Not worth pursuing further. I just chalked it up to good information about to know about that person moving forward. But it really p***ed me off. It resonated big time with the problems I mentioned above. 

A big problem for me was spending my adult life in the military. It's a different culture. They work differently. It's not all perfect to be sure but they do stress integrity and being direct when speaking. When I come across a situation like the above, it hits me viscerally. I find it disrespectful to me, to themselves, and the propriety of the circumstances. It is a big red flag that something is not healthy. A danger. But this is just me. My take on the matter. I am finding many people see it as business as usual. 

Part of me knows I cannot dwell on this one person. She is what she is. A simple problem really. I now know I cannot trust her to demonstrate simple integrity and honesty when push comes to shove. No worries. I will continue to turn in my work and try my best. If a discrepancy occurs, I just know I will be on the short end. 

But another part of me wants to step away from the situation. I need to be true to my convictions and demonstrate I will not participate at that level and drop the class. 

So where do I go? It's just one discussion for one class for cripes sake! I am coming out ahead financially on the matter and learning a few things to boot. But I feel weak and sinful letting it be. The two contrary feelings are sitting there in my head and my heart together. As happy as can be. Smiling at me.     

tinysure tinysure tinysure
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#2
"Don't sweat the small shit, and remember that everything is 'small shit' "

You're not used to being in retreat, and it probably feels like this is a retreat. If the class is not a requirement, and/or can be replaced with something else for the credits, bail. It's not worth butting heads with the instructor, because in the power structure you find yourself mired in, she has all the power, and you have damned little. I've been to a lot of colleges, mostly because it became something of a hobby for me when I was in my 30's. I went to a Community College, and the University of Virginia, and the University of North Carolina, and Virginia Intermont College. In addition, my first wife went to Christopher Newport College and then grad school at the University of North Carolina, and I occasionally had to deal with her fallout there as well.

Some instructors were never meant to instruct, and are no damned good at it. It's probably harder for word to spread about them among the student body in an online setting, because, no Student Lounge or Student Union building or much of a gathering spot where one can trade notes and bitch about the instructors. In in-person educational settings, such instructors get a name, and have a hard time acquiring students... and eventually get sacked for that, if it is discovered before they get tenure.

Sometimes, it's just a matter of teaching style vs. learning style clashing. I had one professor who never, ever gave any tests. He got a lot of students like that, but then lost a lot when they discovered that a 10 page paper was due every Friday covering the weeks's instruction, and that the "final" was a 30 page term paper. Lots of kids could not handle that, and decided that tests and quizzes were not necessarily a bad thing, and dropped his classes. The entire course was graded solely on those papers, and class participation. I thrived under those conditions, but a lot couldn't make it, because of the clash between his teaching style and their learning style. That was Ben Ramsey, who taught Religion and Philisophy sorts of classes at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. I rarely agreed with him, but always made good grades under him because he realized we didn't have to agree, we just had to be able to properly communicate our disagreements, and get our respective points across by setting forth logical points.

I had other instructors that I could not get along with, The worst of them had chips on their shoulders and took the attitude that they knew everything, you knew nothing, and their job was to hammer their "wisdom" into your head, and "un-teach" any notions you had that they considered wrong. In those cases, I either dropped the courses or, if it was too late in the semester for that, just stopped going and took the hit in GPA. It wasn't worth the aggravation to continue.

Sometimes, you just have to cut your losses and move on.

Another part of the problem, in my case, was that when I got to UNCG, I was "the Old Man" of the campus. I was in my 30's, whereas most of the student body was kids fresh out of high school with no life experience. It's easier for such instructors to "mold" young minds and bend them to their will because the kids have not had experience handling adversity, and they get used to that, so us old farts on campus present a sticky problem to them. They can't buffalo us like they can the youngsters. A side note to that situation was a big difference in how we, myself vs. the younger students, handled people such as the support staff. The cooks in the cafeteria, the groundskeepers, the maintenance staff, campus police, etc - I dealt with all of them differently than the kids did. I was old enough to realize their value, worth, and necessity in keeping everything running in the background, and treated them like humans beings, where the kids just gave them all a ration of shit as "beneath" the kids, because they were just the "hired help".

On the other hand, I gave the instructors more crap than the support staff. I wasn't afraid of the instructors like the kids were, and I respected the support staff for the jobs they did, unlike the kids. It is an entirely different dynamic going to school at an older age, and the people there catering to the kids are used to kids - old guys are not what they are used to dealing with in their work setting.

Things may be different now, with more older people entering the educational arena. However, you will still run across the Gods of Education, or instructors who consider themselves as such, every now and then. I actually told one that it wasn't that I was too stupid to learn, but that it was he who had no damned business teaching. I mentioned that "them as can, DO, and them as can't, TEACH", walked straight out of his office and down the the Registrar and dropped his class, and never took another class under him, so as to prevent him from gaining an opportunity to retaliate.

I studied Physics and Astronomy at UNCG, and actually had a class created there, just for me. I was the only student in it, and probably the only one that EVER took it. I was working on stellar navigation, and found that I needed a class in Spherical Trigonometry (to plot angles and vectors in 3 dimensions) that they did not offer... so my advisor had one created. Easy class - no instructor, I researched it and taught it to myself, and just checked in with him once a week to report my progress. I still have my "final exam" from that class, a series of star maps plotted from a particular perspective external to the solar system, to illustrate the 3 dimensional nature and huge expanse of space.

I graduated from the Community College while bypassing a "required" course, because I could not get along with the only instructor that taught it. It was a phys ed course, and he was a dick, so I dropped his class and convinced the administration that a class on the obstacle course under a police instructor was more in line with the Law Enforcement curriculum I was pursuing than volleyball classes under a wimp. So I talked them into substituting the useful for the useless. Be creative - it's not a retreat, it's a reorganization and regrouping!

AND - congrats on going back for more education. Like my Dear Old Dad always told me, you can never get too much education, and you are never too old to learn!

.
“The nature of psychological compulsion is such that those who act under constraint remain under the impression that they are acting on their own initiative. The victim of mind-manipulation does not know that he is a victim. To him the walls of his prison are invisible, and he believes himself to be free. That he is not free is apparent only to other people.”

-Aldous Huxley

-- Got mask? Just sayin'...




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#3
@ABNARTY 

Remember to choose your battles.  This one doesn't sound worthy of further emotion.  Lots of manipulative types 'out there' who purposely communicate in a vague manner.  Just got to deal as best as one can and get past their five minutes of control over an aspect of your life.

Cheers
[Image: 14sigsepia.jpg]

Location: The lost world, Elsewhen
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#4
(10-09-2021, 07:17 PM)F2d5thCav Wrote: @ABNARTY 

Remember to choose your battles.  This one doesn't sound worthy of further emotion.  Lots of manipulative types 'out there' who purposely communicate in a vague manner.  Just got to deal as best as one can and get past their five minutes of control over an aspect of your life.

Cheers

Good advice. Very true.
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#5
(10-09-2021, 06:15 PM)Ninurta Wrote: "Don't sweat the small shit, and remember that everything is 'small shit' "

You're not used to being in retreat, and it probably feels like this is a retreat. If the class is not a requirement, and/or can be replaced with something else for the credits, bail. It's not worth butting heads with the instructor, because in the power structure you find yourself mired in, she has all the power, and you have damned little. I've been to a lot of colleges, mostly because it became something of a hobby for me when I was in my 30's. I went to a Community College, and the University of Virginia, and the University of North Carolina, and Virginia Intermont College. In addition, my first wife went to Christopher Newport College and then grad school at the University of North Carolina, and I occasionally had to deal with her fallout there as well.

Some instructors were never meant to instruct, and are no damned good at it. It's probably harder for word to spread about them among the student body in an online setting, because, no Student Lounge or Student Union building or much of a gathering spot where one can trade notes and bitch about the instructors. In in-person educational settings, such instructors get a name, and have a hard time acquiring students... and eventually get sacked for that, if it is discovered before they get tenure.

Sometimes, it's just a matter of teaching style vs. learning style clashing. I had one professor who never, ever gave any tests. He got a lot of students like that, but then lost a lot when they discovered that a 10 page paper was due every Friday covering the weeks's instruction, and that the "final" was a 30 page term paper. Lots of kids could not handle that, and decided that tests and quizzes were not necessarily a bad thing, and dropped his classes. The entire course was graded solely on those papers, and class participation. I thrived under those conditions, but a lot couldn't make it, because of the clash between his teaching style and their learning style. That was Ben Ramsey, who taught Religion and Philisophy sorts of classes at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. I rarely agreed with him, but always made good grades under him because he realized we didn't have to agree, we just had to be able to properly communicate our disagreements, and get our respective points across by setting forth logical points.

I had other instructors that I could not get along with, The worst of them had chips on their shoulders and took the attitude that they knew everything, you knew nothing, and their job was to hammer their "wisdom" into your head, and "un-teach" any notions you had that they considered wrong. In those cases, I either dropped the courses or, if it was too late in the semester for that, just stopped going and took the hit in GPA. It wasn't worth the aggravation to continue.

Sometimes, you just have to cut your losses and move on.

Another part of the problem, in my case, was that when I got to UNCG, I was "the Old Man" of the campus. I was in my 30's, whereas most of the student body was kids fresh out of high school with no life experience. It's easier for such instructors to "mold" young minds and bend them to their will because the kids have not had experience handling adversity, and they get used to that, so us old farts on campus present a sticky problem to them. They can't buffalo us like they can the youngsters. A side note to that situation was a big difference in how we, myself vs. the younger students, handled people such as the support staff. The cooks in the cafeteria, the groundskeepers, the maintenance staff, campus police, etc - I dealt with all of them differently than the kids did. I was old enough to realize their value, worth, and necessity in keeping everything running in the background, and treated them like humans beings, where the kids just gave them all a ration of shit as "beneath" the kids, because they were just the "hired help".

On the other hand, I gave the instructors more crap than the support staff. I wasn't afraid of the instructors like the kids were, and I respected the support staff for the jobs they did, unlike the kids. It is an entirely different dynamic going to school at an older age, and the people there catering to the kids are used to kids - old guys are not what they are used to dealing with in their work setting.

Things may be different now, with more older people entering the educational arena. However, you will still run across the Gods of Education, or instructors who consider themselves as such, every now and then. I actually told one that it wasn't that I was too stupid to learn, but that it was he who had no damned business teaching. I mentioned that "them as can, DO, and them as can't, TEACH", walked straight out of his office and down the the Registrar and dropped his class, and never took another class under him, so as to prevent him from gaining an opportunity to retaliate.

I studied Physics and Astronomy at UNCG, and actually had a class created there, just for me. I was the only student in it, and probably the only one that EVER took it. I was working on stellar navigation, and found that I needed a class in Spherical Trigonometry (to plot angles and vectors in 3 dimensions) that they did not offer... so my advisor had one created. Easy class - no instructor, I researched it and taught it to myself, and just checked in with him once a week to report my progress. I still have my "final exam" from that class, a series of star maps plotted from a particular perspective external to the solar system, to illustrate the 3 dimensional nature and huge expanse of space.

I graduated from the Community College while bypassing a "required" course, because I could not get along with the only instructor that taught it. It was a phys ed course, and he was a dick, so I dropped his class and convinced the administration that a class on the obstacle course under a police instructor was more in line with the Law Enforcement curriculum I was pursuing than volleyball classes under a wimp. So I talked them into substituting the useful for the useless. Be creative - it's not a retreat, it's a reorganization and regrouping!

AND - congrats on going back for more education. Like my Dear Old Dad always told me, you can never get too much education, and you are never too old to learn!

.

I knew you would post a thesis on the subject  tinybiggrin

I appreciate the feedback. And you're right. Very true about some folks not being able to teach. The spherical trig class actually sounds pretty cool.
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#6
(10-10-2021, 12:48 AM)ABNARTY Wrote: I knew you would post a thesis on the subject  tinybiggrin

I appreciate the feedback. And you're right. Very true about some folks not being able to teach. The spherical trig class actually sounds pretty cool.

It's not all that different from regular trig. The main difference is that all the angles of a triangle on the surface of a sphere add up to 270 degrees instead of 180 degrees, because of the curvature of the sphere opening up the angles more.

And yeah, theses are how I got through college to begin with - old habits die hard!

.
“The nature of psychological compulsion is such that those who act under constraint remain under the impression that they are acting on their own initiative. The victim of mind-manipulation does not know that he is a victim. To him the walls of his prison are invisible, and he believes himself to be free. That he is not free is apparent only to other people.”

-Aldous Huxley

-- Got mask? Just sayin'...




Reply
#7
@ABNARTY 

When my oldest started college I figured out very quickly that most of her professors were basically over-rated adult babysitters who were full of themselves. I think over the years it has just become worse. 

I considered going back to complete my education but feel that my level of education is much higher than a lot of the instructors now. I would most likely end up in prison for throttling a few of them to death.  Most of them have never worked in the real world, just in academia. They haven't got a clue about practical application or personal interaction in the field. 
"As an American it's your responsibility to have your own strategic duck stockpile. You can't expect the government to do it for you." - the dork I call one of my mom's other kids
[Image: Tiny-Ducks.jpg]
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#8
(10-10-2021, 09:27 PM)GeauxHomeLittleD Wrote: @ABNARTY 

When my oldest started college I figured out very quickly that most of her professors were basically over-rated adult babysitters who were full of themselves. I think over the years it has just become worse. 

I considered going back to complete my education but feel that my level of education is much higher than a lot of the instructors now. I would most likely end up in prison for throttling a few of them to death.  Most of them have never worked in the real world, just in academia. They haven't got a clue about practical application or personal interaction in the field. 

It takes a little bit getting used to, when all your instructors are about the age of your nieces and nephews. Most are book learned, but with little to no commonsense, or ability to think outside of the script.

I find it humorous and mildly annoying, when they feel threatened and insecure, and decide to resolve that with arrogance and dismissal.

I understand they are expected to follow the rules and, thinking for yourself is a no, no. I have, on a couple of occasions, pointed out that the text book info is sometimes not fact, it is information being presented by the author that describe an experience, but a different experience may present, and call for a different action, or that the same experience can have a different outcome.

It can be interesting to have instructors in their 30s and 40s, when I have been in the field for over 40 years. But continuing education hours are requirement to keep my license current. So I will get older and my instructors will get younger.

It is not always easy being an old lady.
[Image: attachment.php?aid=8192]




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#9
Sounds like there has been a sea change in academia since I went to university.

I recall some outstanding professors.  One had come to the USA from behind the Iron Curtain and he had absolutely NO time for Marxist sympathies.  Another man who taught modern European history had fought there in World War II.  I can remember him dryly saying,

Quote:Adolf Hitler.  I remember that guy.

Those kind of people had direct and very serious connections to real world events, and they had something to say about what had gone on.

Another one I recall was an old guy with a bad foot who could barely drag himself to the podium for astronomy lectures.  The first time we saw him, we all thought "well, this will be a wasted course".  Wow, we were completely wrong.  He was a wonderful lecturer who enthralled us with his knowledge.  We gave him a standing ovation at the completion of the course.

Of course, there were less serious things that went on, like calibrating "funnelators".  This was an elastic band used to launch water balloons from the dormitory room window.  It was amazingly consistent in its performance.  Once one knew how far to draw the band back to hit a certain point, it always landed on that point.  Poor pedestrians that suddenly found themselves wet!  minusculebiggrin

Cheers
[Image: 14sigsepia.jpg]

Location: The lost world, Elsewhen
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#10
(10-11-2021, 10:26 AM)F2d5thCav Wrote: Sounds like there has been a sea change in academia since I went to university.

I recall some outstanding professors.  One had come to the USA from behind the Iron Curtain and he had absolutely NO time for Marxist sympathies.  Another man who taught modern European history had fought there in World War II.  I can remember him dryly saying,

Quote:Adolf Hitler.  I remember that guy.

Those kind of people had direct and very serious connections to real world events, and they had something to say about what had gone on.

Another one I recall was an old guy with a bad foot who could barely drag himself to the podium for astronomy lectures.  The first time we saw him, we all thought "well, this will be a wasted course".  Wow, we were completely wrong.  He was a wonderful lecturer who enthralled us with his knowledge.  We gave him a standing ovation at the completion of the course.

Of course, there were less serious things that went on, like calibrating "funnelators".  This was an elastic band used to launch water balloons from the dormitory room window.  It was amazingly consistent in its performance.  Once one knew how far to draw the band back to hit a certain point, it always landed on that point.  Poor pedestrians that suddenly found themselves wet!  minusculebiggrin

Cheers

Once you dial in the range and direction, fire for effect gets pin point.
Reply
#11
(10-10-2021, 09:27 PM)GeauxHomeLittleD Wrote: @ABNARTY 

When my oldest started college I figured out very quickly that most of her professors were basically over-rated adult babysitters who were full of themselves. I think over the years it has just become worse. 

I considered going back to complete my education but feel that my level of education is much higher than a lot of the instructors now. I would most likely end up in prison for throttling a few of them to death.  Most of them have never worked in the real world, just in academia. They haven't got a clue about practical application or personal interaction in the field. 

Have you ever noticed the younger instructors seem to single out the "non-traditional" students? They are well aware of the dynamic in the classroom with the younger kids and do not want anything challenging their position. I can respect that and do my best to support it. I am there to learn, not become the teacher. Buuuuuut...... like I said above, I have a hard time with disingenuousness.
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#12
(10-11-2021, 01:29 AM)NightskyeB4Dawn Wrote:
(10-10-2021, 09:27 PM)GeauxHomeLittleD Wrote: @ABNARTY 

When my oldest started college I figured out very quickly that most of her professors were basically over-rated adult babysitters who were full of themselves. I think over the years it has just become worse. 

I considered going back to complete my education but feel that my level of education is much higher than a lot of the instructors now. I would most likely end up in prison for throttling a few of them to death.  Most of them have never worked in the real world, just in academia. They haven't got a clue about practical application or personal interaction in the field. 

It takes a little bit getting used to, when all your instructors are about the age of your nieces and nephews. Most are book learned, but with little to no commonsense, or ability to think outside of the script.

I find it humorous and mildly annoying, when they feel threatened and insecure, and decide to resolve that with arrogance and dismissal.

I understand they are expected to follow the rules and, thinking for yourself is a no, no. I have, on a couple of occasions, pointed out that the text book info is sometimes not fact, it is information being presented by the author that describe an experience, but a different experience may present, and call for a different action, or that the same experience can have a different outcome.

It can be interesting to have instructors in their 30s and 40s, when I have been in the field for over 40 years. But continuing education hours are requirement to keep my license current. So I will get older and my instructors will get younger.

It is not always easy being an old lady.

tinylaughing tinylaughing tinylaughing tinylaughing I know the feelz....
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