10 (or so) cool reasons why professors should apply to work at a college on Mars.

-It would sound a lot better to say that you teach at a college located on Mars, rather than located on Uranus.

-You could have ‘Elon Musk’ in as a guest speaker; I mean, what else is he going to do with his spare time while living on Mars?

-You can commute to work on a Mars Rover.

-You would have extra-terrestrial students in your classes that would hand in amazing ‘out of this world’ projects.

-You could take a lot of time off with pay because of the dust storms.

-You now can wear that stupid looking mortar board hat for something useful: to protect your head from a flying asteroid.

-You will have smaller class sizes due to the limited space available on the spacecrafts arriving to the planet.

-You would be known as an ‘Interstellar Professor’.

-You can eat all the pizza in the cafeteria that you want; if you’re 200lbs on earth, you would only be 76lbs. on Mars!

-Due to less surface gravity on Mars than on Earth, you can literally hop around campus.

-Since a day on Mars is about 40 minutes longer than on earth, you can take longer breaks during class.

-You could change your name to ‘Professor Saturn’; it would have a nice ring to it.

 

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Top 10 similarities between a colonoscopy and working at a college.

Colonoscopy for web FINAL

It’s a pain in the ass when… you’re approaching your 2010 ‘Toyota’ in the parking lot, and you see that student who failed your class (twice), driving past you in a brand new ‘Porsche’.

It’s a pain in the ass when… you have to repeatedly tell students that, just because its their ‘end-of-semester anniversary’ coming up, it doesn’t mean they can be ‘sexting’ back and forth with their boyfriend/girlfriend during your lecture.

It’s a pain in the ass when… you’re marking exams and you accidentally knock over your fourth glass of red wine all over them.

It’s a pain in the ass when…you have to use a washroom in one of the older buildings that don’t have ‘2-ply’ toilet paper in the stalls or the  ‘5-step hand-washing instructions’ posted on the wall for you to follow.

It’s a pain in the ass when…the college’s ‘automated’ phone system doesn’t work properly and connects you to a professor or a department…in another country.

It’s a pain in the ass when… the elevator is ‘Out of Order’ and you are forced to take the stairs to get to your class on the second floor.

It’s a pain in the ass when… the ‘mystery professor’, who taught in the classroom before you, used ‘permanent’ white board marker instead of ‘dry erase’ marker on all of the boards.

It’s a pain in the ass when… you’re sitting with the College President and Dean on the graduation ceremony stage, and you all start to notice that your graduation gown stinks like ‘Old Spice’, bad body odor, and salt & vinegar potato chips; compliments of the professor who wore it during the previous ceremony.

It’s a pain in the ass when… you start yelling obscenities and dropping ‘F-bombs’ at the automated voice on the college phone system, only to realize that it’s actually that nice lady working in the Registration office that ‘pulled some strings’ to get your lazy-ass, no job, smartphone-addicted son to the top of a program’s waiting list.

It’s a pain in in the ass when… you’ve just handed out the last exam to your students, and are just about to sit down and relax for 2 hours with your coffee and newspaper, and suddenly notice that the print shop forgot to print the last page of the exam; the page with the question worth 40% of the final mark.

It’s a pain in the ass when…you go to the ‘Rate my Professor’ website and all the students comments are saying that you’re the one who’s a “pain in the ass”!

 

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Top 10 (or so) “I have to go to the washroom” exam strategies.

bathroom break It never fails; there’s always a student that raises their hand during an exam and says “I have to go to the washroom.” Your initial reaction may be “too bad, wait” but you can’t do that. So, here are some tips to ‘flush’ any student attempts for cheating on an exam.

 

  • Understand your college policy for such circumstances and send the policy to your students the day before the exam date.
  • Before the exam starts, tell students that now is the time to go to the washroom, not during the exam. It will give the impression that there is no option, even though you know that you can’t prevent them from going.
  • Write the time they left and the time they return on the front page of their exam.
  • Make note how many eraser marks there are and where they are on the existing answers that they have, up to the point when they went to the washroom. For example, if they have answered 25 out of 50 multiple choice questions with no eraser marks before they went to the washroom, make note of it. Upon final review of their final exam, if you see some of those 25 answers were changed after they used  the washroom, then I would be very suspicious. You can try this with short answer and True or False questions as well. Also, let the students know that you will be doing this if they have to leave to use the washroom during the exam.
  • Make sure they don’t have their cell phones on them when they leave. Don’t search them, you’re not a police officer.
  • If you are in a larger room and have the assistance of exam invigilators/supervisors, have one of them accompany the student and wait outside the washroom. You should have a male and female supervisor to cover your bases. The only thing that escorting them will do is to make sure they don’t talk to anyone to and from the washroom. By the way, don’t stand outside the stall; that’s ridiculous and unnecessary.
  • Lighten up, yet hint before they leave that you are aware that using the washroom during an exam has been used as a method for cheating, “you didn’t write all the answers on the toilet roll in the stall before the exam did you?”
  • Limit washroom visits to one student at a time.
  • Reiterate the consequences of academic dishonesty and the short term and long term implications.
  • Keep an eye on the length of your exam. If it’s a 3 hour exam, what do you think will happen?
  • Don’t say, “…and make it quick!” Really?

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Top 10 (or so) reasons why Professors should sign up for yoga classes at the college.

yoga pose

– You won’t feel so bad wearing your ‘Lululemons’, because you’ll soon realize that you’re not the only ‘plus-size’ professor working at the college.

– It will force you to get some exercise, instead of sitting all day on your fat ‘Asana’ in your office, munching on potato chips and drinking ‘Diet Coke’.

– It will be a nice change to start spending time in a different kind of Detox Centre other than, as you call it, the classroom.

– While lecturing at the front of the classroom, you can impress your students by putting one leg behind your head when standing.

– When you see a student texting during a guest speaker’s talk, you can replace the traditional ‘Count to 10’ with yoga breathing exercises, the Pranayama, to help you refrain from going over and smashing their phone with a sledgehammer.

– You can lend your yoga mat to that student who falls asleep in your class.

– You can learn how to create a relaxed mood in the classroom by using incense, candles, and speaking in a way that your whole lecture sounds like a series of Tibetan chants.

– If you’re non-tenured, it will help with your depression.

– You can keep fooling yourself that you’re as youthful as your students.

– With your newly acquired skills, you will now have a better chance of getting a job as a full-time yoga instructor than a full-time college professor.

– It will help with your digestion after eating the food at the cafeteria.

– You’ll have a place to go for serenity after a student receives their failing grade and tells you to “go to hell!”

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The top 10 ‘must-have’ for college professors on the first day of class.

– A ‘signs of life’ detector.

– The agenda you revised 20 minutes before class.

– The ‘new and improved’ college policies and procedures.

– An ‘ice-breaker’ joke. “A professor walks into a bar…”

– The I.T. department phone number on speed dial.

– An ‘urban dictionary’ to translate student slang.

– Your best mum mum mum mah p-p-p-poker face, p-p-poker face.

– A ‘Chrome Book’, ‘iPad’, ‘MacBook’, ‘PC’, ‘Smartphone’, ‘E-reader’, ‘PDA’…Coffee.

– The answers to the questions that you will definitely be asked: “Where’s the washrooms?”, “Is there an exam in this course?”, and “When’s the break?”.

– A key to get into the classroom.

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Campus Cheating: Top 10 (or so) ways to catch students.

-They start off the ‘Academic Misconduct’ meeting by saying to the ‘Cheating Review Committee’, “It’s not you…it’s me.”

-They actually know how to spell ‘plagiarism’, because they have been caught so many times doing it!

-Simply go around the room repeating the “Eenie Meenie Miney Mo” lyric and there will be an 80% probability that the students who end up on the last “Mo” are cheating.

-They try to trick you by telling you that their ‘lazy eye’ is a common medical condition when in fact, they spent countless hours watching Youtube videos called ‘Be a Chameleon in the exam room…cheat and go undetected by learning to make your eyes look in two different directions at once!’ and ‘Funny party tricks using your eyes!’

-The student ‘scopes’ the classroom the day before the exam.

-When they enter the exam room, they take out a can of black spray paint, ski mask, and gloves from their backpack and spray the security camera(s) in the room.

-All of their paragraphs start with ‘Lorem Ipsum’.

-On closer inspection of the tattoo covering the back of their hand, you notice the words aren’t “sex, drugs, and rock and roll”, but instead, are the keywords used throughout your course.

-In the middle of the exam, shout out, “Hey YOU, I can see you cheating!” and see who looks up first with a panicked look on their face.

-They tell you the reason they have writing on their palms is because they just left a palm reading session with “Madam Jones, the world’s most amazingly accurate psychic!”

-They’re coughing the ‘Morse Code’ during the exam.

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