Advisement questions

Dear Fellows,

As faculty, you represent the face of the college to our students.  Because of this, you may encounter questions from students that lie outside your area of expertise – mathematical content.  We’ll be spending some time on November 17th addressing these kinds of questions, and giving you the resources you need to help direct students most effectively. 

Before Seminar 6 on November 17, please post here on the OpenLab ONE or TWO EXAMPLES of questions you’ve received from students that are *not* directly related to course content (questions about registration, careers, financial aid, bureaucracy, personal problems, etc.) – especially questions you aren’t sure how to answer, or “questions that scare you!”




7 thoughts on “Advisement questions

  1. Q1: I am applying for a _____ scholarship. Can you write a recommendation letter for me?

    Q2: I am planning on a career in (business, computer science, nursing). What math courses do you recommend.

    Q3: I don’t know what to do. My son is sick. It takes me an hour and a half to get to school from Queens. The exam is tomorrow.

  2. As faculty we know that all economical, political, social etc challenges are reflected to the new generation, more specifically to our students that we are teaching every day.
    Sometimes they raise questions, and sometimes they just express their struggle in different ways.

    – I have a couple of students that often they fall asleep in class. (They try hard to keep awake, but it’s hard for them because they work on night shifts).

    One day one of them stayed at the end of class and asked me:

    ” Do you think it is a good idea to work while going to college?”

    For a moment I was just speechless:
    I had an experience that had scared me:
    One of my students some semesters a go came up to me. She started crying while telling me:
    ” I cannot keep the balance of my life. I am alone, I pay rent and everything, I work and I go to school”

    ( Well my kids have worked while going to college too…but at least I was helping them out….).

    Some other impressive questions from my students:

    * How can we make sure of the career we are working towards; How did you choose your (Professor) career?

    * Can you trust the website: “Rate my Professor” when choosing classes/ professors for next semester?

    Well, only together we can answer these and many other of their questions in best way.

    Happy discussion!!!

  3. Two questions that I have received when teaching MAT1N75:

    (1) “Are you teaching MAT1(N+1)75 next semester?”

    and since the answer to (1) is usually “no” (or “I don’t know yet”), I then get the followup question:

    (2) “Can you recommend an instructor who is teaching MAT1(x+1)75 next semester?”

  4. I contacted the chair about the email message below, which was send by my top student with 90+ class average.

    I feel like my hands are tie and this student will have to repeat the course or get an incomplete. I directed her to the chair.

    Dear Professor Ferguson,
    Good morning! I hope when you receive this email all is well!
    I wanted to inform you that on Friday, November 10, 2017 I was admitted in Bellevue Hospital because my water broke.
    I really enjoy your class and I was doing so well that I’m hoping to see what are my options for finishing this semester. Especially since there are only some weeks left of class.
    I will be in the hospital until I delivery hopefully by week 34 as of now I’m only 27 weeks.
    I have a lot of bed rest but I’m sure I can make time to study.
    I was currently living in a maternity home with the Catholic sisters, the sisters of life. Since I am unable to leave the hospital they have offered and I’d like for them to speak with you and the Dean about some options for me to finish. I have attached their email.

    Thank you so much!

  5. Questions students have asked:

    1) My class average is a grade of C. Since my financial aid will be reduced if I get a D grade, will you please give me an F grade to repeat the course ?

    2) For my major, I will need to take 3 math classes. I am not a good math student. I get C’s. Do you think next semester I can take a statistics course and pre Calculus together?

    3) In high school I took AP Calculus A, B, my adviser told me I have to take it Pre-Calculus? Why can’t I take Calculus 3?

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