Season 2 Episode 18

In this episode, The Fallow Fields, we are joined by Sarah Zimmerman, Professor of English at Fordham University who shares her thoughts about the lecture as effective instructional strategy.

Access a captioned version

Show Notes

Joseph Wright of Derby, The Philosopher Giving that Lecture on an Orrery, in which a Lamp is Put in Place of the Sun (c. 1766)

From YouTube: You don’t need to plan an exotic trip to find creative inspiration. Just look up, says Gavin Pretor-Pinney, founder of the Cloud Appreciation Society. As he shares charming photos of nature’s finest aerial architecture, Pretor-Pinney calls for us all to take a step off the digital treadmill, lie back and admire the beauty in the sky above.

Lecture Me. Really. by Molly Worthen, NYT

BEFORE the semester began earlier this fall, I went to check out the classroom where I would be teaching an introductory American history course. Like most classrooms at my university, this one featured lots of helpful
gadgets: a computer console linked to an audiovisual system, a projector screen that deploys at the touch of a button and USB ports galore. But one thing was missing. The piece of technology that I really needed is centuries old: a simple wooden lectern to hold my lecture notes. I managed to obtain one, but it took a week of emails and phone calls. Continue reading

Are College Lectures Unfair? By Annie Murphy Paul

DOES the college lecture discriminate? Is it biased against undergraduates who are not white, male and affluent? The notion may seem absurd on its face. The lecture is an old and well-established tradition in education. To most of us, it simply is the way college courses are taught. Even online courses are largely conventional lectures uploaded to the web. Continue reading

In Defense of the Lecture By Miya Tokumitsu

Few have savaged lecturers as brutally as the the Enlightenment-era printmaker William Hogarth. In Scholars at a Lecture, the presenter reads from his prepared text, his eyes down, indifferent to his audience. The budding academics are no more impressive; those in thrall to the lecturer’s nonsense have slack faces with lolling eyes and open mouths. The others don’t offer any critique but yawn, doze, or chat idly among themselves. Continue reading

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