Student Caring - A Podcast for Professors
Join professors de Roulet and Pecoraro as they encourage professors to achieve success.
SC 198 Your Star Student's Star is Fading

You are the Professor In charge of a group or team based course. These could be a sports team, performing group, or research laboratory. Your STAR student, who was carrying the group has become unreliable.

Consequences:
The team is loosing games - consequently casting a negative light on your university and could result in less funding.

The research project is falling behind schedule and is in jeopardy of loosing their funding. This will directly impact your income.

OPTIONS / DISCUSSION

Daniel: I fell like we are back in ETHICS 101, this is not an easy situation.

You and the student:
You need to put aside all of the other concerns and concentrate on the student.
Try to discover why their performance is faltering and seek to help them.
What can I do as a professor?

Why do high achieving students falter?
They can be in a position of high responsibility for the first time in their lives.

We are not there to put out the absolute best product, we are there to help students learn.
The team or performance group may not be the best, that's okay. 
If the focus is on winning, then we are not really teaching anymore.

If your team is very public, the decision you make will influence the public about not only you, but your university. 

It is wise not rely on one person (student) to be in a key leadership position. Build a team.

What would you do?

 

We welcome your comments, feedback and guest post submissions.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

 

Direct download: sc_pod_198.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 2:06pm PDT
Comments[0]

SC 197 Can't Afford the Tuition

Student Centered Decisions While Professoring
SC 197 Can't Afford the Tuition

NOTES FROM OUR PODCAST

Daniel and David explore a challenging student situation and discuss options.

SITUATION
Your student comes to your office hours during finals week and informs you that their parents can't afford the tuition and they have to go back home to a more affordable and less prestigious college. They want your advice.

You have someone in front of you who is very much in need of good advice.

OPTIONS / DISCUSSION
Take time to actively listen to what your student has to say.

During difficulty meetings like this, recognize that what you say to your student may be forgotten. It is a good idea to take notes, then give them to your student - on paper. 

Daniel:  Often times, I forget particular situations with my students in my classroom. It would server me well, as a prof. to remember that a number of my students are there because they or their family are making pretty significant sacrifices. As I walk into the classroom, I want to be able to give them good things. I want to be able to honor the sacrifice and commitment they are making by offering them the best that I can offer them.

David: This may be the last time I sit and visit with this student. I want to make sure that every single word I say and the advice I give is "good." Last impressions last a very long time.

Advice for your student.
Encourage them to look deep with themselves and recall their hopes and dreams. Explain that this change in their academic career should not dissuade them. There are many educational institutions that help them to realize their goals.

After giving them the good financial advice, say something truthful and encouraging to that student about their potential. You may offer to write them a letter of recommendation that is affirming.

Share with your student a story of a previous student, or yourself, who was in a similar situation and it turned out well.

 

What would you do?

 

We welcome your comments, feedback and guest post submissions.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

Direct download: sc_pod_197.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 12:50pm PDT
Comments[0]

SC 196 Student Centered Decisions While Professoring

Student Centered Decisions While Professoring
SC 196 Tough Love or Tough?

 

 NOTES FROM OUR PODCAST

Daniel and David explore a challenging student situation and discuss options.

A likable student with potential is not performing up to PAR.

The grade they will earn while in your class will determine their future at your college.

 

What would you do?

 

Direct download: sc_pod_196.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 1:44pm PDT
Comments[0]

SC 195 Burnout Solutions #3

 NOTES FROM OUR PODCAST

Focusing on the positive:

  • Multitasking comes upon us slowly as we take on additional responsibilities over time.
  • Often, we can't do much about our current schedule, however, we can look ahead to a future academic year and make some changes.
  • During your holiday break:
    • Look at how your last semester went.
    • Think about how many plates you have in the air.
    • What plates give you enjoyment and which ones do not?
  • Choose not to make the negative aspects of your job – a focus.
  • Journaling can provide a place to reflect on your job and a place to process your feelings.

A Holiday Break Challenge:

  • Look over your daily school life calendar.
    • Mark in red those activities that you do not enjoy.
    • Mark in green those activities that you do enjoy.
    • Plot a strategy to turn more of your hours to green.

What do others observe that you do well and enjoy?

Try to remember, during this break, why you got into this career in the first place.

 

We’re basing our podcasts on an application of Dr. Dike Drummond’s book, Stop Physician Burnout: What to Do When Working Harder Isn’t Working. Dr. Drummond was a successful family physician, working his dream job in a dream location, when he realized he could not continue. His burnout was so severe that he walked away from the practice of medicine, and now dedicates his time to helping doctors avoid burnout and find meaning and satisfaction in their profession.

Unfortunately, most of the ideas and observations Dr. Drummond presents are also present in higher education. Our task will be to apply what fits to the educator’s world, and to offer some discipline-specific observations as well.

We welcome your comments, feedback and guest post submissions.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

 

Direct download: sc_pod_195.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 4:08pm PDT
Comments[0]

SC 194 Burnout Solutions #2

SOLUTIONS TO EDUCATOR BURNOUT NO. 2

FOR ALL OF OUR U.S. FRIENDS, HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

BURNOUT IS A DILEMMA, RATHER THAN A PROBLEM:

  • If your problem is that you have to grade 25 papers, the solution is to grade them.
  • REALITY CHECK: You realize that when you grade them, they will be done, but what will happen next? There’s always more. That’s a dilemma.
  • We seek to adopt a mindset that solves our dilemma.
  • We see our colleagues always taking on extra work.
  • Dr. Dike Drummond:    “You solve a problem and you manage a dilemma.”
  • In his book, Dr. Drummond differentiates between “problems” and “dilemmas.” A problem has a clear solution and can, indeed, be solved. A dilemma is something more complicated—something without a clear solution or a problem that has been in place for a very long time. Faculty who serve on college or university committees may be tempted to work on what they think are problems, only to find that their work is seemingly being wasted on a dilemma. Politics in a department might seem like a problem, but the interpersonal roots of the problem, compounded over time, can have transformed what was once a problem into a dilemma.
  • You and who every your boss is need have a talk about healthy productivity and personal energy.
  • Daniel, upon his return from a recent sabbatical trip to Ethiopia states: I realized that I need to put a couple of things in my life that prevent me from using all of my life for work.

DO THE BIG 180:

  • Focus on what you want instead of what you don’t.
  • As educators, we are problem solvers. Sometimes the problems can’t be solved.
  • How many emails do you receive that are negative? Do you know what this student did?!#%
  • Find something that you really enjoy at work. What would your job look like if you focused on that one thing?

MORE TO COME!

We’re basing our podcasts on an application of Dr. Dike Drummond’s book, Stop Physician Burnout: What to Do When Working Harder Isn’t Working. Dr. Drummond was a successful family physician, working his dream job in a dream location, when he realized he could not continue. His burnout was so severe that he walked away from the practice of medicine, and now dedicates his time to helping doctors avoid burnout and find meaning and satisfaction in their profession.

Unfortunately, most of the ideas and observations Dr. Drummond presents are also present in higher education. Our task will be to apply what fits to the educator’s world, and to offer some discipline-specific observations as well.

WE WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS, FEEDBACK AND GUEST POST SUBMISSIONS.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

~~~~~

All Podcasts via This Website

Click this Link to Subscribe via iTunes

Click this Link to Listen on Stitcher Smart Radio

Click this Link to Subscribe via Google Play

Click this Link to Subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

 

###

SC 194 BURNOUT SOLUTIONS #2

The Caring Professor

The Caring Professor

Direct download: sc_pod_194.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 10:16am PDT
Comments[0]

SC 193 Burnout Solutions #1

SC 193 Burnout Solutions #1

student-caring

We’re basing our podcasts on an application of Dr. Dike Drummond’s book, Stop Physician Burnout: What to Do When Working Harder Isn’t Working. Dr. Drummond was a successful family physician, working his dream job in a dream location, when he realized he could not continue. His burnout was so severe that he walked away from the practice of medicine, and now dedicates his time to helping doctors avoid burnout and find meaning and satisfaction in their profession.

Unfortunately, most of the ideas and observations Dr. Drummond presents are also present in higher education. Our task will be to apply what fits to the educator’s world, and to offer some discipline-specific observations as well.

 SOLUTIONS TO EDUCATOR BURNOUT

 

No. 1:  Your inner perfectionist critic:

  • We are our own worse critic.
    • Oh, I could do better.
    • I can't grade papers fast enough.
    • I could have done better in that meeting.
  • Our response: "Thank you for sharing."

No. 2:  Burnout is a problem, not a dilemma:

  • We can solve problems.

No. 3:  Do the big 180:

  • Focus on what you want instead of what you don't.

No. 4: You are not a super hero, become a great plate spinner instead:

  • Learn how to spin one plate really well. Once you have done that, consider adding another plate.

No. 5:  Celebrate all wins:

  • Lean to be happy will all wins and don't focus on the failures.
    • Treat yourself like a good dog. (A cute one.)

Your inner perfectionist critic:

  • Our desire to be perfect is motivated by a strong desire to be the best.
  • Our training (graduate school) forces us to strive for perfection.
  • Perfection can lead to despair. 
  • Student: "Oh, that professor is just coasting."
  • Talk back to the voices in your head:
    • "I hear what you're saying, thanks." Now, move on.

Your inner perfectionist critic:

  • Our desire to be perfect is motivated by a strong desire to be the best.
  • Our training (graduate school) forces us to strive for perfection.

 

We welcome your comments, feedback and guest post submissions.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

 

Direct download: sc_pod_193.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 10:09pm PDT
Comments[0]

SC 192 The Specific Causes of Burnout in Educators 3

Podcast 192:  The Specific Causes of Burnout in Educators (Part 3)

 

Conditioning—how our educations set unrealistic expectations for our careers:

 

The expectations we experienced in graduate training have profound effects on the expectations of ourselves that we carry into our careers.  Consider the following list of expectations:

 

  • We are assigned reading lists that we cannot possibly finish.
  • We need to keep current in our fields by reading even more.
  • We are to be judged, professionally, on the quality and quantity of our research and our publications or productions.
  • We are often not trained to teach.
  • Teaching is just something we do to help pay for our graduate educations.

 

Compare this to the typical job of a professor who does not find himself or herself working in a primarily research-oriented job where course loads are at a minimum:

 

  • You are evaluated and promoted primarily on the basis of your teaching.
  • Part of your evaluation is based on service to the college or university (committee work and advising), which you did not do as a graduate student.
  • You are expected to publish, even though your time for research is greatly diminished from your days as a graduate student.

 

We have seen a number of colleagues who feel like failures in their profession, even when they are succeeding in their current jobs as educators.  Why?  Because they are not in the type of school their graduate work trained them for, and they are not living up to the expectations ingrained in them by their graduate work.

 

Direct download: sc_pod_192.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 9:38am PDT
Comments[0]

SC 191 The Specific Causes of Burnout in Educators 2

SC 191 The Specific Causes of Burnout in Educators 2

student-caring-burnout

ADDITIONAL CAUSES OF BURNOUT

Poor leadership:

 

  • Poor bosses are the number one reason employees state for leaving a job. In education, because of the unclear lines of authority present in the profession,  we often have several bosses:  a mentor, the department chair, the dean, and higher administration.  Each make demands on the educator that must be met.
  • Educators are by nature idealists and people who like to improve or fix things. Realizing that co-workers or “bosses” do no share their idealizing, or realizing that certain things will not be fixed, can be devastating to an educator’s morale.
  • In his book, Dr. Drummond differentiates between “problems” and “dilemmas.” A problem has a clear solution and can, indeed, be solved.  A dilemma is something more complicated—something without a clear solution or a problem that has been in place for a very long time.  Faculty who serve on college or university committees may be tempted to work on what they think are problems, only to find that their work is seemingly being wasted on a dilemma.  Politics in a department might seem like a problem, but the interpersonal roots of the problem, compounded over time, can have transformed what was once a problem into a dilemma.
  • A dysfunctional administration, or a school culture that changes very slowly (glacially), can lead to disappointment and burnout.
  • Administrators come from several different backgrounds: they have been educated in college administration; they are highly ambitious individuals who find the administration of an institution more interesting than the practice of education; they have worked their way through the ranks and want to give what they have learned to the institution and their colleagues; they are burned out educators looking to retreat into other sorts of work.  Some of these backgrounds negatively affect administrative views of faculty, and can lead to faculty disillusionment (just as faculty stereotypes of administrators, expressed in some of the categories above, can negatively affect faculty views of administration).

Life issues:

 

As educators, we are always “on stage.”  You must be fully there in a classroom to be an effective instructor.  Difficult life issues, such as those listed below, shorten your fuse, drain your energy levels, and make it difficult to be fully present to your students and colleagues:

 

  • Health (your own health and the health of loved ones)
  • Finances
  • Family problems

 

As educators, we cannot “retreat” for a time into our offices, or into an assigned project.  We need to be “on stage”—even when that’s the last thing we feel like doing.

WE WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS, FEEDBACK AND GUEST POST SUBMISSIONS.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

~~~~~

All Podcasts via This Website

Click this Link to Subscribe via iTunes

Click this Link to Listen on Stitcher Smart Radio

Click this Link to Subscribe via Google Play

Click this Link to Subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

 

###

SC 191 THE SPECIFIC CAUSES OF BURNOUT IN EDUCATORS 2

The Caring Professor

The Caring Professor

Direct download: sc_pod_191.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 1:13pm PDT
Comments[0]

SC 190 The Specific Causes of Burnout in Educators 1

SC 190 The Specific Causes of Burnout in Educators 1

student-caring-educator-burnout

Dr. Drummond identifies five general categories of burnout’s causes:

 

  1. The profession itself
  2. Your specific job
  3. Poor leadership
  4. Life issues
  5. Conditioning: the unrealistic expectations our educations have placed on us

 

Education has its own specifics that it brings to these categories.

 

The profession itself:

 

  • Never-ending work and hours: the work of grading papers, doing research, and preparing lectures is never finished.  These tasks will take up as much time as you give them.  Educators find themselves continuing their work into evenings and weekends, never feeling caught-up or well enough prepared.
  • Not seeing enough specific results—wave after wave of starting at the beginning: While there are advantages to beginning each term with a new batch of students, educators fall into the trap of wondering why, after teaching the same information and skills for so long, these students just don’t “get it.”  Also, we see our students for limited periods and, unless we have the pleasure of observing our students over four years, we do not see the results of the educational seeds we plant.
  • Problem students: Those of our students who are needy, disruptive, or who have severe problems to work through take up a lot of our time.  Encounters with such students can take the energy out of a class, turning it into something to dread instead of something to be excited about.
  • Public stereotypes: Who of us have not experienced the dismissal of our work from other professionals?  They are convinced we don’t work hard, have long vacations, and coast because of tenure.  They do not understand the truth of our profession—that a job that is not nine to five means endless work.
  • Income: We don’t enter education to get rich.  Our income often necessitates taking on extra classes or outside work, perpetuating the cycle of burnout.

 

Your specific job:

 

  • Course loads and overloads: Many of our colleagues teach four courses per semester, are expected to serve on college or university committees, take assigned work of the departments, advise students, and are expected to publish.  There’s also pressure to take on overload courses in some departments where hiring has not kept up with enrollment growth.
  • Committees and boundaries: Although they meet relatively infrequently, committee work can also demand preparation and additional tasks to be completed outside meeting times.  Committee work, like grading, research, and course preparation, will often take as much time as you’re willing to give it.
  • Politics: While politics are a way of life on any job, they can seem particularly complicated in the world of academe.  Difficult politics in a department, or in one’s interaction with administration, can make for a chronically stressful work environment.
  • Poor relationships with specific colleagues: Like problem students, difficult colleagues can become the focus of our interactions.  And, of course, sometimes we can be the difficult colleague, causing problems for those around us.  Educators experiencing burnout are good candidates for being difficult colleagues.

WE WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS, FEEDBACK AND GUEST POST SUBMISSIONS.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

~~~~~

All Podcasts via This Website

Click this Link to Subscribe via iTunes

Click this Link to Listen on Stitcher Smart Radio

Click this Link to Subscribe via Google Play

Click this Link to Subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

 

###

SC 190 THE SPECIFIC CAUSES OF BURNOUT IN EDUCATORS 1

The Caring Professor

The Caring Professor

 

Direct download: sc_pod_190.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 10:06am PDT
Comments[0]

SC 189 Introducing Educator Burnout and its Causes

SC 189 Introducing Educator Burnout and its Causes

 educator-burnout

We’re basing our podcasts on an application of Dr. Dike Drummond’s book, Stop Physician Burnout:  What to Do When Working Harder Isn’t Working.  Dr. Drummond was a successful family physician, working his dream job in a dream location, when he realized he could not continue.  His burnout was so severe that he walked away from the practice of medicine, and now dedicates his time to helping doctors avoid burnout and find meaning and satisfaction in their profession.

Unfortunately, most of the ideas and observations Dr. Drummond presents are also present in higher education.  Our task will be to apply what fits to the educator’s world, and to offer some discipline-specific observations as well.

Stress and burnout are not the same.  Stress is temporary and can be motivating, while burnout is a chronic condition that de-motivates and gets worse over time.  Dr. Drummond identifies three key symptoms of burnout:

  • Exhaustion—no matter how many breaks you take, exhaustion does not go away. It’s like filling up your tank in the gas station, and while driving away, realizing your tank is still registering “empty.”
  • Depersonalization—the feeling of just wanting to get through your work uninterrupted by students, colleagues, and administration. The stages of depersonalization are venting, sarcasm, cynicism, and “compassion fatigue.”  Compassion fatigue is the point of knowing that you should care about the students and co-workers around you, but you just don’t have anything left to give.
  • Hopelessness—feelings of no longer having a purpose in your work, or of not making a difference.

WE WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS, FEEDBACK AND GUEST POST SUBMISSIONS.

Email:  General Information   |   Prof. David C. Pecoraro

Thank you!

Daniel & David

~~~~~

All Podcasts via This Website

Click this Link to Subscribe via iTunes

Click this Link to Listen on Stitcher Smart Radio

Click this Link to Subscribe via Google Play

Click this Link to Subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed)

 

###

SC 189 INTRODUCING EDUCATOR BURNOUT AND ITS CAUSES

If you are concerned about making tenure or getting hired as a full time professor, this book is for you.
The Caring Professor




The Caring Professor

 

Direct download: sc_pod_189.mp3
Category:Education -- posted at: 10:32am PDT
Comments[0]