Response to Student Feedback
HSTY1076 - American History from Lincoln to Clinton (2007)
Unit Coordinator: Dr Stephen Robertson
This unit of study proved even more successful in 2007 than the last time I taught it, in 2005. 95% of students agreed or strongly agreed with the proposition "Overall I was satisfied with the quality of this unit of study,” for a mean score of 4.57 out of 5. 93% of students agreed or strongly agreed that “The teaching in this unit of study helped me to learn effectively," for a mean score of 4.41. Those scores reflect the outstanding work of the tutors for this unit Ivan Coates, Nick Irving and Michael Thompson all of whom were singled out for praise in the evaluations.
In addition, student comments reveal that those scores were based on the lecture outlines and mp3 recordings I provided, the unit web site, the organization of course, and in particular, the lecturing. Below is a sample of the comments:
- “The course was great in teaching me how to approach history in university as opposed to in high school”
- “Focus on primary sources helped me to be a historian – helped broaden my perception of what studying history is all about”
- “Great lecturer and tutor. Thoroughly enjoyed the positive, enthusiastic learning environment”
- “This is my second year at uni and this subject was the most professional, most organized experience I’ve had. The lectures were the best lectures I’ve ever had and I wouldn’t be surprised if they remained the best.”
- “Lectures were excellent; clearly mapped out and coherently communicated”
- “Really enjoyed the unit. Lectures were in-depth and informative, tutorials further developed ideas from lectures”
- “Learning materials were so convenient and helpful. I never had a professor put so much extra effort into supplementing the lectures”
- “The best of my courses so far. Don’t change anything”
Several students did ask for more time to be devoted to recent history. This year, due to a lecture lost to the ANZAC Day holiday, that period received less attention than usual. But it is also the case that the historiography of this era is expanding, with post-1945 political history in particular one of the most vibrant fields in American history. When I next teach the unit, in 2009, I plan to devote more time to that material.
A handful of students also wanted me to slow down when lecturing. I'll keep trying - and keep providing the mp3 recordings so you can listen again if you miss something.