university media planning for an early career researcher?
November 3, 2012 11:56 AM   Subscribe

I was asked to consider teaching for a couple of days at a university here in the UK which is great. But I have zero experience in creating lessons plans. I have found some useful free-to-use lesson plans online that I am tailoring but I can't seem to get an indication of what I should provide to the university department leaders in advance. Should I only send the lesson plan and readings? Should I omit readings from what I send my future bosses? Help me make a proposal map so I can sort it all out for the future! It's a media studies department FWIW.
posted by parmanparman to Education (3 answers total)
If you are just teaching a couple of days of an already-established course, you should liaise with the current person who is responsible for the whole course. They may already have readings in mind that they want you to work with. And then I'd provide them with a basic outline of the topics you will cover in each class, i.e. five or six bullet points. (They may also tell you that they have covered some of that already or that they intend to later, so give them enough notice that you can change your plans). I sometimes also send my powerpoint slides to the person responsible in advance too.

If your couple of days is a stand-alone course/workshop/whatever, then I think you probably have free reign and don't need to send anything to your future bosses. Certainly if you are talking about someone who does not themselves teach the subject you are doing, there's not much point in sending them materials unless they ask for them. On the other hand, if you do feel you need to send something and/or the boss is someone who teaches that material themselves sometimes, it would maybe be nice to send them your syllabus - i.e. list of readings and topics for the specific dates, and any assessment you plan to use. (Be aware too that the university might have a policy for what is and isn't allowed/required for assessments, so you probably want to run any planned assessment past your boss no matter what).
posted by lollusc at 9:33 PM on November 3, 2012

Yes, what Lollusc said.
Parman, I suggest you call up the head of course/department and discuss this with them. Explain the situation, and ask them:
1) To clarify what they want.
2) Can they send you an example of a particularly good lesson plan that they have so that you can copy the format and style ( if they're very organised there may be a department standard format/guidelines).
3) Ask any questions you need to clarify what is the students current prior knowledge.

They've asked you because they believe you can do a good job and inspire the students, a couple of days is for them to try you out. They all will remember how hard lecturing was for them in the beginning, and will be helpful to you.
Just make it awesome without making a big fuss and everyone will be happy.

Experience: I'm course leader for 2 degree programmes in a UK university. I mentor and support early career staff as part of my role.
Caveat: Posted late Saturday night after alcohol.
posted by Dr Ew at 1:19 AM on November 4, 2012

Yep, also head of a department at a Dutch university here. When I hire new lecturers, I don't usually expect them to come up with the entire content and structure of their lessons on their own, unless they are setting up an entirely new course, but even then you'd get pointers from the department itself. And indeed, one of the main things you want to discuss is the assessment criteria /grading structure that is being used already/you should comply to. Good luck!
posted by PardonMyFrench at 7:59 AM on November 4, 2012

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