minutia press.
For the record

We've had a motion in the Faculty Assembly and now a resolution from EnCouncil, so I want to go on record as in favor of faculty producing syllabi, grading formulae, and other course information for the classes we teach.

Yes, I voted against the motion brought to the Faculty Assembly because it would have put into the course catalog something we (the FA) had no power to enforce.

But I am strongly in favor of faculty doing these things, and I do them myself. Why should we these things? We have to figure out anyway what we are going to teach and how we are going to grade. Doing that kind of planning up-front can simplify planning the rest of the course. One might as well make public just what one will cover in a course. I don't see the harm.

Some won't want to bother with this; some will lack the tool experience or support to put such material on the web. But it can be handed out on paper if necessary and will give the illiusion, if not the substance, that the prof has figured out how the course will go for the semester.


I know that resolution was brought before the Student Union Senate last week and has a lot of support from students in the school... and I agree that it should be done, but how can it possibly be enforced?

Also, the addition of Telesis may provide those "non-tech-savvy" professors with a way to easily put materials online.

Posted by: Ed at March 1, 2004 11:34 PM

There are certainly mechanisms that can exert pressure, in appropriate amounts of kilograms per square centimeter, to cause profs to do this. The chair of a dept controls the salary of each prof. So uncooperative profs could suffer financially.

What's Telesis?

Posted by: rkc at March 2, 2004 6:43 AM

It's easiest to compare Telesis to the business school's Prometheus - it allows professors to post files/grades/attendance/assignments/syllabus, gives students a place for discussion, and much much more.

It's accessible via https://telesis.wustl.edu (it was made by the same people who made WebStac). Your login/pin are the same as for WebStac (& I assume WebFac also)...

Posted by: Ed at March 2, 2004 9:45 AM

Telesis looks very interesting. It looks a lot like a better supported version of wugrade (https://wugrade.wustl.edu).

Posted by: david at March 2, 2004 9:53 AM

I haven't seen Telesis recently, but I work with the guys who develop it, and saw a demo a while ago. I was very impressed. Since I'm in the CS department, most professors have their own way of doing the webpages, but for other profs who aren't so web-savvy it looks great. I know that the guys are working really hard on making it good and useful.

Posted by: Nathan at March 3, 2004 2:13 PM