The first week of the semester and my online students are entering into my pedagogical world. For most, if not all, my world is foreign and strange, which in turns leads to stress and chaos. Common comments I have received is “my other classes don’t do this,” …
Studies have shown that online students expect online classes to be easy, to fit into their busy lives neatly, that a life that is balance should continue on with no change.
My “A” students, the ones who always have worked hard to earn their “A” are confused why their well hewed approach is not ending in the same outcome. Fear, shock, the dismay of receiving less than an A has put many into a tailspin.
In this article, it states, “When teachers try something different in the classroom and students resist, the teacher may back down. Often, this is due to fear of what will happen to their student evaluations and contract renewals. I have been told by many instructors that they once tried active learning but the students hated it, so they went back to what was tried and true” (Silverthorn, 2006, p. 139). Importantly, research evidence suggests that high levels of instructor immediacy may be inversely related to student resistance in a classroom, as well as being positively correlated with student learning (Kearney et al., 1988; Kelley and Gorham, 1988). One study of the relationship between student resistance and instructor immediacy found that students were significantly more likely to comply with instructor requests from a moderate or highly immediate instructor than requests from a low-immediacy instructor (Burroughs, 2007). Alternatively, Richard Felder provides what he calls “mini-sermons” to help explain to students why he uses the teaching strategies he does, including responses he has used to address student complaints (Felder, 2007).
(link) The more common concern of most instructors is student resistance that is destructive in nature, behaviors that limit the learning of the students themselves and potentially other students around them. The dreaded Appeal to Powerful Others, which would involve threats to take student complaints about a course to an authority figure, such as a chair or a dean. Finally, a third potential origin of student resistance that bears exploring is students’ prior experiences in and resulting expectations about college classrooms. Just like faculty, students enter classrooms with extensive personal experiences that lead them to have preconceived expectations about what teaching and learning should entail. In Brownell and Tanner (2012), we explored four barriers that may impede faculty members from implementing innovative pedagogies. the reality may be that some students view high grades, minimal effort, and ease of completion as motivating incentives in their college course work. As such, students may not immediately see the external incentives and rewards they will accrue by participating in active-teaching and active-learning approaches.