Professor jennifer hurley

Author: Jennifer Hurley

Why Other Teachers Make Me Feel So Lonely

It’s the night before the department meeting, and I can’t sleep. Something about being in a space with other teachers makes me deeply uncomfortable, a feeling I am ashamed to admit. In my fantasy life, I am a team player, well liked, maybe even admired. […]

Why We Must Work Less in School

The sociology professor was on Zoom presenting research about how students felt taking classes during COVID. The results of the research: Students were depressed, anxious, and totally overwhelmed by their workloads. One professor raised his tiny Zoom hand. “I don’t get it,” he said. “I […]

Guest Post by Bilkalpa Chakraborty: A Student’s View on Oppression in Education

I am honored to present this wise essay written by my student, Bilkalpa Chakraborty. She writes that “Humans are known for their brains. When the education system does not respect the human brain, it is dehumanizing the students.” Read her full essay below.—Jennifer Hurley The […]

To the Teacher Who Said Half of Her Class Didn’t “Belong” There

I have probably said this too, at one time, though now I am ashamed to admit it. The educational system conditions us to think that students must keep pace—and that as good teachers, it is our role to must ensure that they keep pace. But […]

Is School Anti-Learning?

More and more, I am coming to believe that school is a place that is, sadly, antithetical to learning. It is a place where students pretend to learn in exchange for a grade that certifies that they “learned,” and are thus qualified to move on […]

Guest Post by Jieye Fang: The Banking Model of Education and Grades Are Damaging Critical Thinking

Dear Readers, Please enjoy this insightful article written by my stellar student, Jieye Fang. Most of us are probably very familiar with the words “critical thinking.” We hear about it all the time, both in schools and outside of schools. Since people are constantly talking […]

The Wrong Lesson That Almost All Schools Are Teaching

We must stop using rewards and punishments in order to motivate our students. I have believed this for years, but I have never felt it so strongly as last week, when I discussed intrinsic motivation with my community college English composition students. My Zoom class […]

Rubrics and the Dehumanization of Education

I used to have a folder on my computer called “rubrics,” which contained over a dozen variations of rubrics for each writing class I taught. Some were point-based, others descriptive, such as the one below. I worked hard to craft these rubrics, taking care to […]

Why I Had to Give Up Grades or Give Up Teaching

Like many teachers, I have spent countless hours trying to devise a perfect grading system, one that is equal parts fair and rigorous, that will reward students for hard work and punish certain behaviors that I saw as detrimental to my students’ progress. For twenty […]

How the Study of Literature Helps Combat Racism

A few years ago, the California State University (CSU) system decided to drop Introduction to Literature as a graduation requirement for its students. Shortly thereafter, our college and many other California community colleges followed suit. As a consequence of this change, students would go through […]