Instructor: Chase Andrews
Semester: Fall ’15
Meeting Time: T/R 9.30 – 11.15 and many appointments
This questionnaire is a confidential way for you to evaluate your English 175 course and its instructor. Your comments will be reviewed by department administrators and the class instructor after student grades are turned in. Please provide a thoughtful response, as these comments assist in making decisions regarding tenure, pay raises and other important personnel matters.
- Please explain how this course helped (or did not help) you become a better writer.
Mr. Andrews definitely expanded my horizons. For the first time, I really GOT The Great Gatsby. I’m a better writer because I’m more aware of the world around me, and not just because Mr. Andrews took my virginity on October 9th.
- Please comment on which of the major writing assignments provided the most valuable learning experience for you.
I learned the most from filling out the medical questionnaire at Planned Parenthood. Until then, I never thought I could be a statistic. Writing the check taught me a lot, too; I forgot that my parents still get a copy of my bank statement.
- To what extent and in what ways were the texts and other materials used in the course appropriate, helpful, interesting and challenging?
I hardly think his coded e-mails were appropriate. (He was SnarkleBear1996 because it sounds like a teenager’s e-mail address; something that couldn’t easily be connected to a 35-year-old professor. He addressed me as “Anne” and “Miss Shirley” because I’ve always loved the L.M. Montgomery novels.)
Helpful – the cash he gave me for the procedure.
Interesting – were the sob stories about his abusive ex-wife told by an unreliable narrator?
Challenging – making love to the classic rock he blared so his neighbors wouldn’t hear us.
- Please describe how the course helped you to develop your critical thinking and analytical skills.
The course has allowed me to pluck small, seemingly unconnected details from a work and to connect them in a logical manner. After the first few weeks of class, Mr. Andrews stopped calling on me. Analytically, it’s apparent that he didn’t want to drop any hints to the other students. He’d be terrible at poker; he has a terrible tell. When lying, he avoids eye contact and twiddles his right thumb and forefinger. I’ll bet he’s doing it right now as you read this to him in some meeting.
- Please comment on the extent to which the workload for the course was reasonable and appropriate.
Mr. Andrews is insatiable and I suppose I would have appreciated it more if I had had more experience. “I’m still sore there” does not mean “Bug me until I grudgingly let you pound away.”
- How effective was the instructor?
Honestly, now. I don’t want to give Mr. Andrews too much credit for effectiveness. After all, I was a healthy 19-year-old woman in her reproductive prime. It’s not that hard to slip the puck into that goal. But he does get creativity points for convincing me he was allergic to latex.
- How satisfied are you with the work you did for this course in terms of your commitment to the course, your contribution to the class, your own judgment of your written work, etc.?
I guess I got what I wanted when I signed up for the class. I learned a lot about life. I learned that a woman must put up with a lot from a man. (A bedroom filled with creepy velvet paintings, shoulder hair (that’s a thing!?!?!) and what may have been an unfinished circumcision.) You can’t say I wasn’t dedicated.
- Please offer any comments or suggestions for improving this course.
Mr. Andrews should advise future coeds that, while the odds are remote, the procedure carries the risk of cervical damage. (My first pregnancy was my last.)
I should wrap this up. The suckup who volunteered to bring these to the English Department is getting impatient because I’ve been writing for so long. As a comment, I’d like to thank the college for these anonymous evaluations that go straight to the administrators. I’m not coming out in public with any of this until I can be sure I have the school’s support. If you want to do something about it, you’ll figure out who I am.
Kenneth Nichols teaches writing at two colleges in Central New York. He received an MFA in Creative Writing from Ohio State. (Go Bucks!) His work has appeared or is forthcoming in publications including Main Street Rag, Lunch Ticket, Prime Number, Skeptical Inquirer, the Tin House blog and PopMatters. Further, he reviews literary journals for NewPages and 1.5 sentences of his work for the Not For Tourists Guide to Queens was quoted in The New Yorker. You can visit him online at greatwriterssteal.com.