Directions: Study the following essay carefully and write a summary in about 100 words.
By Jeff Bakersfield
Who knows better than the students themselves what a university should do for them and how they should be treated? Yet how often do students have any say at all in such important issues as faculty selection, curriculum planning, and scheduling? The answer is obvious: never. If university administrations refuse to include student representatives in the decision-making process, something drastic must be done.
Lets examine what is happening right here on our own campus in the areas mentioned above. The first major issue is the selection of faculty members. Never in the history of this college has a student been permitted to interview, examine the credentials of, or even meet prospective professors. All hiring is done by a joint administrativefaculty committee, often made up of people who will not even have extensive dealings with the individuals after they begin teaching. Those who have the most at stake and whose lives and academic careers will be governed by the professors - the students themselves - never even meet the new teachers until the first class meeting. No one is better equipped to evaluate a professors ability to communicate with students than those whom he or she intends to teach. Anyone can read curriculum vitae to ascertain the level of professional training and experience someone has had, but the best judges of a teachers ability to teach, which is the primary function of any professor, are undoubtedly the students themselves. WWW.GONGWU.COM.CN 2005-8-13 2:39:46
Students interest in and commitment to appropriate curricula are even more obvious. We have come to college with very specific purposes in mind: to prepare ourselves intellectually and practically for the future. We know what we need to learn in order to compete successfully with others in our chosen fields. Why should we be kept out of the curriculum planning process? If we pay for the textbooks, spend hours in the library doing research, and burn the midnight oil studying for tests and exams, why are we not permitted to give our opinions about the materials we will spend so many hours studying? It is imperative that our views be made known to curriculum planners.
Finally, the area of scheduling is of vital interest to students. The hours at which classes are offered affect the workings of our daily lives. Many of us must juggle work and class schedules, but often administrators ignore such problems when they schedule classes. Schedules must be convenient and flexible so that all students have equal opportunities to take the most popular classes and those which are most essential to their majors. If students helped with scheduling, never would there be two required courses offered at the same time for only one semester per academic year. Never would we have to wait two or three semesters to take a course that is a prerequisite for other desired courses, nor would we have to race across campus in ten minutes to get from one class to the next. Students are vitally concerned with the scheduling area.W004-5-27 22:15:08
In the 1960s and early 1970s, students were not too shy or fearful to demonstrate against the injustices they saw in the draft system and the Vietnam conflict. Why should students today be afraid to voice their opinions about the very important issues that affect their very lives? It is imperative that students act to protect their own rights. Fellow university students, I urge that you meet together and draw up demands to be presented to the administration. We must take the future in our own hands, not be led to it like passive sheep. Let us act now so that we will not be sorry later!
In his essay, Student Rights, Jeff Bakersfield stated that students had the right to be involved in university administrative decisions. Using the current situation on his own college campus as an example, he emphasized that students should be included in decisions regarding selection of faculty, curriculum planning, and scheduling of classes. He pointed out that students not only had more vital interests in the decisions made in these areas than those who traditionally settle the issues, but that they were also better equipped through their experiences as students to make intelligent decisions about them. Bakersfield concluded by stating that it was crucial for students to become actively involved in protesting unilateral administrative decisions and proposed that they meet to discuss their mutual interests and demands.