Author Topic: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke  (Read 1044 times)

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Offline Cyberdragon

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My electrical cert class is becoming a joke. Here in the US it's a 4 year coarse run by the National Center for Construction Education and Research, which is supposed to have standards, which I have yet to see upheld (except in the basic job training class). At least the last electrical class with another prof had lab time..though his teaching consisted of highlighting sections of the book. ::) This time it took us forever to get through the first section because the teacher kept trying to do the test online and it didn't work for weeks and he finally just made us take it on paper, which I aced because I actually understood it (AC theory). Today he just gives us the test on the entire section of electric motors, controllers, and regulations, and I flunked it and had to retake it (which gives 70% for a retake), and he only had one class prior on it which was a crappy connection zoom call where we went over some in book review questions. The other 4 students did ok on it, the sponge brain guy who said he can cram study, the 2 others that have jobs in the field, and one guy who literally CHEATED! He had his book out behind his bag so the teacher couldn't see, and I straight up called him out and the teacher just looked like "whatever man"...eating candies and listening to loud music. :palm: God forbid we have any lab work where we can take apart motors to actually see how they work (which AFAIK is supposed to be required as part of the class). I paid $700 to be taught...not read an annoying book full of text walls and diagrams and expect to memorize a whole chapter (note: I don't hate technical books, I have a collection like a lot of us here do, I just use them for references, I don't want to memorize a whole chapter, I don't learn anything that way). He has powerpoints, but he only used the ones for this section well before we even got to take the first section test, which would have likely told us which sections to were important to study and actually help memorize through verbal instruction, or take notes, or anything like a normal class. He even admitted he didn't know was going to be on the test (but again...the powerpoints exist for a reason!)

This is an example of what you are supposed to do in these classes. https://www.nccer.org/news-research/newsroom/blogpost/breaking-ground-the-nccer-blog/2016/03/16/classroom-lab-management-what-works-what-doesn-t
*BZZZZZZAAAAAP*
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Offline T3sl4co1l

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2021, 04:17:26 am »
So then what, report them (presumably the cheater and instructor?) to the board or whatever?

Tim
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Offline james_s

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2021, 04:39:09 am »
There's that old saying about cheaters that applies here, they're really only cheating themselves in the long run. I wouldn't worry about what other people are doing, the only thing that really matters is how well you learn the material yourself. Sounds like this professor leaves a lot to be desired.
 

Offline Cyberdragon

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2021, 04:58:35 am »
So then what, report them (presumably the cheater and instructor?) to the board or whatever?

Tim

Here in lies the problem, with what evidence? There is a board member in the building with us. But this guy is sneaky and that board guy is clueless. The prof reports everything as OK to this inspector before each class, and has frequent zoom classes. And here's the kicker, the class is supposed to last from 6pm to 9pm (as we are supposed to have lecture and lab), but the inspector leaves at around 7pm, so he dismisses us after waffling around at about 7:15 to 7:30, same with his stupid zoom call. Walks right out and shuts the lights off or closes the connection.

But...I might have a chance as it is going to look weirdly suspicious that a student instantly goes from aceing to flunking. He might pop in to ask what's up, and I'll have a chance to call him out. The instructor will be pissed but so be it. Other than that, I don't know, I'll have to play it real careful as it's my word against his, none of the other students will admit it, they don't have an issue (they are probably used to this kind of crap instruction and learn to sponge up and regurgitate whole book chapters then forget them). The cheater definately won't say anything and I'm actuallly surprised he did it, I had him in my last class, he must have been struggling to but I never thought he'd resort to that.
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Online jpanhalt

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2021, 09:34:47 am »
Is your purpose to get certified or to set that aspect of the world right?  Ever hear of Don Quixote?

Did the cheater harm you?  Does the school have a functioning honor system?  If both are "no," forget about it.  Focus on passing  the exams and move on.
 
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Online amyk

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2021, 01:32:02 pm »
Now you know why certifications are themselves not taken much at face value these days...
 
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Offline LaserSteve

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2021, 03:43:24 pm »
 I've been through the bad instructor thing in undergrad and had to take a lesser degree after a fracus with two bad profs, one of which was "sleeping around" . In my case the VP for academics at that university told me he was the golf buddy of the Prof involved , knew the guy well,, didn't believe me,, and was was going to do diddly squat.. You can bet on the fact that the incompetent miscrient was told about my "confidential and anonymous" interview by the seventh hole of the next round of Golf.

When  I got out into industry, the Prof in question was known to be a perpetual screwup and switched to teaching because his wife had the connections to get him  a job. My bad review and horrible experience during the co-op was ignored.

I work for a competing institution now, and my leadership would consider those same actions intolerable.

   Normally, if this was not Covid time, I'd tell you to seek legal counsel and or the school's ombudsman/ leadership and protect yourself. Especially if you have to take a certication exam from an independent agency down the road.

Ignore the cheater, in industry he'll be down the tubes so fast you'll see flames from the aerodynamic heating as he is tossed out of the building.

Instruction during this emergency period of time has gotten sloppy.  The fact that the cheating is tolerated is because the Instructor is likely rated on student passage, not overall student performance.

Not the way it should be, as most modern schools do the full tracking and stats. But likely the way it is. If he/she did that where I work he/she would be fearing for the future of their career, the stats kept for institutional certification would catch it.  Not all institutions have such wonderful,  just,, and moral systems as where I work.

So here is what you do :

Make the most of it and learn on your own.  You will know the subject cold.  The Instructior may be tenured, in which case student complaints drop off like raindrops unless there is a known pattern of bad behavior. My bet is you can find wonderful videos on YouTube.   It's late in your academic career,  there is a world crisis,, your not studying medicine or aviation, so get the paper and get out.

Know that you are a good honest student, and most Instructors love students with motivation and integrity. I know I do,  and I'm just the support technician.

If the motor topic comes up in an interview. Simply say my Instructor was very weak in that area, leave off the sordid  details, and say "I'm willing and eager to learn whatever you can teach me as an employer. Tell me what to do to learn boss. And I'll go study".

Why am I saying this when normally I'd say something to my leadership if I had the slightest wiff of any cheating?  I got really burned by a rigged system at  a bad College.   The institution's culture determines what happens. Frying/reprimanding an instructor off a single complaint is unlikely to happen during Covid rules. I can tell you that cheating is happening like crazy world wide. I can also tell uou that many instructors are unable and untrained  to cope with virtual learning situations.

 Virtual learning will be over soon, and right now its the excuse for a lot of sloppyness. During a normal semester you'd have a strong complaint. Right Now... Your mileage may vary.

If you don't have a board to set in the future, and do not face a Cert exam, let this one fly. Avoid this Instructor in the future.

If the whole small group was complaining, you would have grounds as a group to act. But right now, at many places, Instruction is on a "What Can be done reasonably " Basis.

If the school had the active moral code: "I will NOT Lie, Cheat or Steal, Nor Tolerate Those Who Do", you'd be in a strong position. From what you have written, that does not seem to be the case.

ARE YOU FACING A CERT EXAM?  If not, live with it and know you have far more integrity then those involved. Interpersonal actions during COVID are strained.

Know that you are right to not tolerate cheating. However that duty to enforce falls on the instructor. If the instructor is aware, then you have no further duty to enforce, there may be some circumstance where a weak student or student coping with outside circumstances may be "open book" with Instructor's tacit  approval.

I have an Ed degree for Secondary Education.  I work in Engineering Education because my moral code would not allow me to release the "social promotion" students out in the world without knowing how to read and write. I spent my required field experiences in inner city schools and in one poor performance rural district.

Humans are sloppy. It's sad, but not all students have the capacity or desire to perform well. Due to human factors many educational systems let the morally intolerable fly. Sounds like your in one of those situations of "Social Promotion". In which case get the paper and bail.



Steve
« Last Edit: June 11, 2021, 05:17:43 pm by LaserSteve »
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Offline dunkemhigh

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2021, 05:57:00 pm »
Quote
Frying/reprimanding an instructor off a single complaint is unlikely to happen during Covid rules.

Indeed, but that's how they get away with it. If a billion people don't complain because they'll be first (or think they are), nothing will ever happen. If complaining doesn't have a bad downside, do it but be prepared for nothing to happen.
 

Offline LaserSteve

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2021, 12:23:46 am »
He's in a group of what, Six? One is the supposed  cheater.  Probably not enough magnitude there to overcome the politics.   Unless the instructor was doing that in multiple classes, not enough magnitude  there for more then a verbal warning to the teacher.  Especially if some one is making allowances for a problem the cheater has but the instructor cannot legally declare to the others.  Teaching is a risky business with lots of legal constraints placed on the instructor.   I'm not defending the instructor, in fact it worries me that for such a small class size, his/her motivation is so small.   The other thing to consider is this class may be lab oriented and not theory oriented, so gathering for labs may be grandfathered.   I don't have enough information to fully review, but at this level, perhaps not rocking the boat or channeling Don Q is the best course of action.

Besides there has to be a consistent pattern or another  other class session  doing more work,   to really drive the point home from an admin point of view.  The instructor has not totally abandoned the students and is attending.

Humans are messy, and I don't have all the details about the other side.   The conservative move is  do whatever is needed ensure a passing grade and move on.  This includes possibly contacting  the instructor and requesting tutoring, extra work,  or a one on one lab session.   If that fails to resolve the issue, I'd consider going up the chain of command.   Drives and Controls for Rotating Machinery is important, but as stated, a certificate is often just a fixed requirement, and the real learning is on the job from senior colleagues.

Schools are getting very creative for required labs and practicum.  In a few cases, a semester or quarter has to be added on at some time for make-up, hence in the US, the grants to students to help keep them enrolled during COVID.  Large scale virtual education is Hell for many instructors who do not have the tools, or in the case of some technical instructors, the formal training.

I feel for the Nursing students who now face another expensive half year or more to do their field experience, if slots can be found for them.  The same for Education majors with in-complete student teaching requirements out of their own pocket for a full year, and for Engineering students who lost co-op.

Often, as a semi-involved outsider looking in, I can see that most problems can be solved by discussion and working together. .  What Amazes me is how shy or scared that some young adults are when it comes to basic business  communications.  On Maslow's Hierarchy of Educational needs, the feeling of safety, accomplishment, and successful interpersonal communication with the instructor is on the second level, and is very important.

Instructor may not realize they have a problem.  Or instructor feels he has a gifted class that is ahead of schedule and is being flexible. Again, I need to see both sides.

Teaching is messy. Especially in a trade school situation.

Steve



« Last Edit: June 12, 2021, 12:49:16 am by LaserSteve »
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Offline dunkemhigh

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2021, 01:55:49 am »
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Unless the instructor was doing that in multiple classes

Bingo!

You surely haven't failed to notice the recent social cancelling of alleged pervs. They used to get away with it because the victims were discouraged from complaining, or they just thought nothing would happen. But then one very public complaint would open the floodgates and pretty much no-one is immune from being held to account now (except Teflon Don).

Maybe this instructor wasn't doing it all over; maybe he was. There is a guaranteed way not to find out.
 

Online amyk

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2021, 04:37:36 am »
Instruction during this emergency period of time has gotten sloppy.  The fact that the cheating is tolerated is because the Instructor is likely rated on student passage, not overall student performance.
When grades and student-written evaluations are the only measures of success, it's no wonder they'll be gamed. The students won't complain when the material is too easy, neither will the instructor when the class average is much higher than it should be. The latter gets praised for being an "excellent teacher", the former get to brag about how smart they are (or how nice the teacher is.) Meanwhile the instructors who actually care are the ones who receive the most negative reviews from their students and have much lower passing rates.
 
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Offline Zero999

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2021, 08:06:51 am »
Quote
Unless the instructor was doing that in multiple classes

Bingo!

You surely haven't failed to notice the recent social cancelling of alleged pervs. They used to get away with it because the victims were discouraged from complaining, or they just thought nothing would happen. But then one very public complaint would open the floodgates and pretty much no-one is immune from being held to account now (except Teflon Don).

Maybe this instructor wasn't doing it all over; maybe he was. There is a guaranteed way not to find out.
But it's gone too far the other way: a person makes false accusations about someone and it ruins their carreer.

Instruction during this emergency period of time has gotten sloppy.  The fact that the cheating is tolerated is because the Instructor is likely rated on student passage, not overall student performance.
When grades and student-written evaluations are the only measures of success, it's no wonder they'll be gamed. The students won't complain when the material is too easy, neither will the instructor when the class average is much higher than it should be. The latter gets praised for being an "excellent teacher", the former get to brag about how smart they are (or how nice the teacher is.) Meanwhile the instructors who actually care are the ones who receive the most negative reviews from their students and have much lower passing rates.
It sounds like you're talking about grade inflation. Hopefully external verification bodies will clamp down on that. If the instructor passes too many people, it should trigger an investigation. The verification body should interview a random sample of students who've passed the course. They should ask them questions, they should know the answers to, if they've passed the course, with the relevant grade. If a student is found to be completely clueless, the instructor should be investigated.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2021, 12:21:43 pm by Zero999 »
 

Offline dunkemhigh

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2021, 10:50:17 am »
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But it's gone too far the other way: a person makes false accusations about someone and it ruins their carreer.

Only if it's sexual. Or race.

For now, anyway.
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: I Failed A Training Test...In A Class That Has Become A Joke
« Reply #13 on: June 15, 2021, 02:44:06 pm »
Quote
But it's gone too far the other way: a person makes false accusations about someone and it ruins their carreer.

Only if it's sexual. Or race.

For now, anyway.
That's worse, since it will lead to the situation when minorities can threaten people with false accusations, to get what they want. In the long run, minorities will suffer more, because it would give employers the perverse incentive to higher white people, as they won't play the race card. I can't see this ending well.
 


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