Now Under New Management!

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

In defense of HCT - that teacher finally writes!

My stance on working at HCT? Well, it’s a pretty good doss, provided you don’t take it at all seriously. So, in contrast to all the whingers on this blog, I would like to offer a positive voice on teaching at HCT, and reveal a hidden opportunity.

Firstly, if you really want to make a difference to the system of education at HCT, you can start just by introducing a few of the elementary features of what is normally believed to be ‘good teaching practice’. Although many of the students behave like naughty school kids, with their typical disruptive and disrespectful behaviour, this actually offers immense scope for professional development. For example, many of my students enjoyed asking stupid questions, scraping their chairs loudly on the floor, and falling into exaggerated fits of coughing whenever I opened my mouth to speak. Addressing these issues means that I can write a paper about the application of a wide range of motivational techniques – often when I am supposed to be teaching!

Another example of the students' exemplary application was the fact that they were often keen to sit there doing nothing, except chatting with their friends and toying with their mobiles. This general reluctance to write anything, except on the desk, sometimes meant that the class was carried out in the traditional oral manner that the students felt most comfortable with. Again, this problem offered another opportunity for activating  the theory-practice dichotomy, and especially for the advocacy of not imposing text-based Western approaches to learning. Moreover, as many of my male students would constantly leave the classroom to chat with their friends, and others would randomly enter the classroom whenever they felt the need to speak with a classmate, this underlined the fact that they assigned an inverted sense of importance to formal Western notions of discipline, clearly prioritising the local culture. In most cases, the students failed even to bring along their course books and pens, again illustrating their attachment to the traditional oral methods of the transferral of knowledge.

Even the fact that many HCT teachers live in fear of complaints from students, together with the sure knowledge that the college management will not support them, means that a professional development opportunity presents itself once more. In fact, I am currently considering writing a paper regarding the crucial aspect of how teachers can preserve their integrity in a Gulf teaching environment without having to assert any of the approved attendance, discipline and homework policies, out of the very real fear that the students will complain and the teacher’s employment be terminated. However, this one might be a little more difficult than I first envisaged!

So, the moral here is: if you’re prepared to come and work at HCT, come prepared to do some research!

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's SO good to know that HCT stands at the forefront of educational research. If only more people knew this, they would not have such a problem recruiting high caliber staff.

Anonymous said...

Looks great! Where can I sign up?

Anonymous said...

S is for satire

Anonymous said...

Read more reviews at www.glassdoor.com/Working-at-HCT-EI-IE384204.11,14.htm

Dr. Richmond said...

First of all, I am a US Citizen and came by this blog by chance while searching for a culturally-enhanced part of the world I could gain some one year experience or do my sabbatical. I do not even know where this college resides. However, I would disagree with some of the notions expressed here. The applicable report about classroom disturbance and the nonchalant attitudes of students could be attributed to the incompetence of the instructor. An instructor must maintain classroom discipline and decorum. This should be part of your training and I am sure the students would be ready to learn new ideas and professional decorum especially being taught by tutor with diverse background. Students love instructors who command respect and you can achieve this by knowing your subject matter and having strong effective communications. lastly, I do not understand what sort of research you are referring to. A research is the systematic investigation into and study of materials and sources in order to establish facts and reach new conclusions. From your report, you seem to have already concluded on the outcome of the circumstances. In order words, you are condemning a system that you are part of.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Richmond, get back under the rock you popped out from!! You silly bastard!

The HCT is a total shithole where the inmates rule, and they aren't into respecting any non-muzzy intellectuals no matter how highly such "professor" might regard him or herself.

We do thank you for the definition of research, but you won't need to be worrying about any research at the HCT. Instead, you'll be wiping bums and getting blamed for leaving a dingleberry. You know what a nanny is? That will be your job, only for 20-year olds!


Anonymous said...

Ha ha, and "Dr. Richmond" is a "US Citizen" but he uses the following constructions of English which would have him immediately taken out in the street for a beating(administered by the actual native US Citizens) for being such a twat.

Said besting would occur continent-wide, including but of course not limited to any of the following locales: the Catskills, Appalachia, the Ozarks, the Everglades, Rocky Mountains (including both Front Range and Western Slope), West Coast, Arizona, Casper, Kalamazoo, etc....

The suspect phrases are:
1) "Culturally-Enhanced"
2) "Where this College Resides"
3) "Notions Expressed" (probably have your teeth kicked out for this one)
4) "Applicable Report"
5) "Nonchalant Attitudes"
6) "Attributed to"
7) "Decorum" (that's a doozy, Esquire!)
8) "Lastly" (I personally enjoy seeing this South Asian expression, reminds me of the days I spent in the UAE!)
9) "A Research" (this is my personal fave Dr. Richmond!!)
10) "Systematic Investigation"

You are busted Dr. Richmond. What a fraud! Do you work for the HCT HR?


Suede Oasis said...

So what's this hilarious 'Dr Richmond' stuff all about, then?

Is it yet another poor attampt at a damage limitation exercise from the HCT Goon Squad?

C'mon Doc, give us a clue!

Anonymous said...

Can we go ahead and implement the acronym DLEPA for Damage Limitation Exercise Poor Attempt?

I like it! And the HCT loves its acronyms so it is a nice fit. Thanks Suede!

Anonymous said...

" ...... In order words ...." ????? thems indian phrases padre, .... watch out for the last man standing ... after Tabarra goes next week there's only the BIG guy to go and we may as well sit back and watch the fireworks before he's sent off to jail ....

Delma said...

So that cheating bastard and fraudster Tabbarra has finally been rumbled?
More details PLEASE!!

Anonymous said...

Most of the people on this site are out now, you need to update Tabarra, SN, all the old VC's lackies...

Anonymous said...

True, and a lot of the old corrupt bunch have been replaced by ... Emiratis!
Surely this is another cause to celebrate, as their incompetence will soon be reported on this blog!

Anonymous said...

Not so sure about that one. The new Emirati 'Directors' all have foreign Associate Directors in each college, who will do all the real work. And these foreigners (Westerners) will carry the can when things go wrong, as they surely will.

The new Emirati 'Directors' are mere figureheads, as they have no real skill or expertise to offer. They are just a sop to 'Emiratization'. But everyone knows that anyway, don't they - even the 'Directors' themselves!

Anonymous said...

Did you mean "Retardization"?

Anonymous said...

Perhaps we have a neologism here: 'Emiretardization'?!

Think it'll catch on?

Anonymous said...

I'm luvin' it!

Anonymous said...

oh and then why not have some local untrained dudes to work as teechers ? why didn't we think of that one before cause its easier to cut down on your payroll at the admin level sos you can pay for the extra salary increase to keep these new guys.

Anonymous said...

Several Emirati women already work as teachers at HCT, and they are very good (so I have heard).
But I can't see the local men being attracted to the job, especially if they pay them the same as the Westerners.

Anonymous said...

Another Glassdoor update here:

http://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Employee-Review-HCT-RVW4322683.htm?utm_source=company-follow&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=company-follow-ri&utm_content=company-follow-ri-review-title

It all screams No, NO, NO!!!