Changing the Structure for the First Day of Class

The first day of class is incredibly formulaic. We review our syllabus and typically outline our expectations and the various rules unique to our course, but we forget that undergraduates often take multiple courses. So if we are expecting students to remember all the nuances of our courses, so are others, which according to Roy Starling alters a student’s composure drastically, namely from “learning to survival.”

Instead Starling have suggested to reformat the first day of class in two different ways to prevent this from happening:

  • For the first day of class, have students engage in group work so students 1) can meet each other and 2) be introduced to the course content.
  • For the first day of class, emphasize the assignments’ reasoning instead of its requirements so students understand that the assignments are designed to help them gain certain skills.
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