In her book Customer Service: A Practical Approach, 2e, Elaine
K. Harris of Tulsa Junior College cites a survey in which school administrators
and faculty were asked to identify the expectations their students had
of the institution. They cited the following:
- Grades with little effort;
- Extra assistance with enrollment;
- Short class meetings;
- No outside reading assignments;
- More parking.
In the same survey, students were asked to cite their expectations
of the institution. These included:
- Positive environment that encouraged learning;
- Transferable classes;
- Instructors who knew their names and cared about them as individuals;
- Safety in the parking lots and campus buildings;
- More parking.
The faculty and administration were correct about the parking problem
-- but little else! This survey supports additional studies that have
found the following more detailed findings of student expectations:
- Assignments that are reasonable in quantity and quality, and
that are clearly and consistently communicated by professors;
- Sensitivity to the diverse demands on students' time, and reasonable
flexibility by faculty in accommodating such time demands;
- Effective use of class time, i.e. not shorter classes, but richer
- A classroom environment that values students' input, and protects
- Examinations and assignments that address issues that were
fully addressed and clarified in class, are appropriate to the
students' intellectual level, are punctually scored and returned,
and are used fairly to determine final course grades;
- A classroom environment that exhibits humor and spontaneity.
Theorists have long expressed the key role of expectations in motivation.
When students? expectations of a class and professor turn out to match
their learning goals, and those goals are perceived as attainable
without unreasonable obstacles, they will tend to be highly motivated
Have you clarified your expectations of students lately?
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