Back to High School?
Some of you know that I am taking a few courses at United Seminary to finish up the UMC requirements. The "History of the Methodist Movement" course ended as it finished. The course challenged us to look at the situation and to ask questions (particularly of the source documents) and to see how they affected us currently. We were graded particularly on original thought (the prof told us he didn't want a book report) and he spoke of our last class discussion as "finally being what he was looking for" (probably especially because it got a little bit heated when we were talking about the homosexual ordination issue).
So I get the syllabus for my new course, UM Doctrine, (different prof) and I was surprised to find that we will be having weekly reading quizzes. Yes, I said weekly reading quizzes. What's more, these quizzes will constitute 40% of our grades! I haven't had reading quizzes since high school, and that's a whole lot of our grade resting on them! (The remaining 60% will come as follows: 20% each for two papers, and 20% "class participation" which is euphemistic for "giving the professor the ability to bump someone's grade either way.")
40% of our grades on reading quizzes. How high school can you get? See, the difference between high school (and even college, to an extent) is that we're the ones paying to be here, and you're not just going to take UM Doctrine because you think it's going to be fun. The purpose of the course, as stated in the syllabus, is to prepare candidates for the Board of Ordained Ministry interviews. So if we're trying to prepare for the interviews, wouldn't that be incentive enough to actually read the materials?