August 23, 2008
Clues for the Clueless #10
Hint: Before sending up that “SOS”, be sure you have tried available avenues for information and aid. Announcing to your online professor that you are “new to online classes” and then asking a whole bunch of questions that indicate that you have neither attended a Distance Learning Orientation Session (which you are required to do before signing up for online classes!) nor looked at the tutorials and online information provided by Distance Learning on their website is not going to impress your professor. In fact, it is highly annoying to get a dozen such emails a slew of such emails from a dozen different students (it ends up being more than a dozen emails) just before the semester starts.
I’m an adjunct. My start date is the date the class starts. Technically, I’m on vacation and shouldn’t be checking my email. I know a lot of adjuncts- in fact, a lot of faculty period- who do not touch their email before the start of the semester.
There is a lovely fairytale called The Magic Fishbone, written by Charles Dickens in 1867, which every student should read. In it, the Good Fairy Grandmarina gives a magic fishbone to the Princess Alicia. It will give the princess one wish… “provided she wishes for it at the right time.”
In the end, the Princess learns that the time to make a wish is when you have already tried your hardest, and in all ways, and have already done your very best.
Yes, that is the time to ask the professor your question. That is the time to really ask for help…
When you actually need some.