Against Syllabi

Any syllabus is fated to yield to the messy circumstances of its course, with results that cannot be predicted. This is reason enough to be against syllabi; their presentation of a course as a fully reasoned, systematically organized thing is spurious. A course that is only its syllabus, day after day, is a course where spontaneity, improvisation, and risk have been banished. The loss is too great. —Terry CaesarAgainst Syllabi (Inside Higher Ed)

I’m sick of syllabi… for now. I’ve spent all last week and much of this week tweaking them. A student e-mailed me to point out that I scheduled an exam in the middle of a break. Oops.

It turns out our Thursday evening courses only meet thirteen times this year… The last time I taught the course, I would have sworn it was fifteen.