By Omar Bihmidine
By Omar Bihmidine
Morocco World News
Sidi Ifni, Morocco, April 17, 2012
My story with some university teachers began in 2006 when I was first taught by them. In fact, I have a great deal to say about them, particularly about their teaching methods and treatment of their students. Yet, all other aspects of their teaching career are not my concerns for the time being, for the treatment that my friends and I have received would suffice. My experience as a university student has greatly paved the way for me to become a lenient teacher, especially that I have learnt a lot from my university professors’ injustices towards their students.
I do not necessarily mean by injustice that students receive low grades or that they exerted themselves harder than normal to validate the modules. As far back as my university days are concerned, I must admit that I admired most of my ex-professors and that I loathed the rest. I do not blame the rest for not teaching us effectively, nor do I abhor them for assigning hard tasks which were demanding on us. Even though I ranked first at university, I had no choice but to leave it altogether. Forsaking it to join CPR (Centre Pedagogique Regional: Regional Educational Center) was mainly due to a few professors.
In my second year, I had already obtained excellent grades. I was so glad about this achievement. Over time, a new professor of linguistics was appointed to teach us. I can’t express in words how much I like this field. Unfortunately, the professor did not live up to my expectations, not because he was idle or mean, but simply because he did not correct our exam papers. To add insult to injury, he gave good marks to those who did not deserve them. I am not saying so out of my judgment. Some girls themselves told me that they were given excellent marks by him which they had never expected. They felt that their success was undeserved.
I still vividly remember when a female classmate of mine asked me incessantly for answers during the exam. She was sitting at the table behind me, and she was on the verge of weeping when I refused to give her answers. She had nothing to write on her sheet and had no other choice but to submit it blank. The professor in question was then teaching us two subjects, Linguistics and Business Writing. He was the only professor who did not show us our exam papers. When the first semester came to an end, I was shocked to learn that the girl who begged me for answers earned the highest mark and I, the average mark. On that day, she came to me and said out of humor that I should have revised for the exam. At that very moment, I was at a loss.
Two days later, I managed to contact the professors so as to have a look at my own exam paper. I complained to him about the injustice he did me. And he promised to bring me the paper the following day. To my dismay, he did not come. I came to university many times, but in vain. I did not know that the day I asked him for the paper was the last time I would ever see him. I went angry for many days. Later on, I received a call from the girl, telling me that she had received that mark because the teacher knew her sister very well. At least, I felt quite relieved, for I at last knew the truth.
To my utter astonishment, I learnt from other students in other classes that they faced the same problem. They uttered their complaints, but like me, they received no response whatsoever. Afterwards, I made up my mind to have a close look at all the marks on the lists. I finally discovered that the marks the university professor gave his students were symmetrical. That is, one third of the class received an excellent grade, one third, an average mark, and one third, a poor mark. It depends on what third you belong to. One had only to pray for the first third. This was the first professor that had unfairly classified me into the second third.
The attribute that most university professors have in common as far as their treatment of their students is concerned is that they unconsciously choose to live in the ivory tower. Recently, I registered at Cady Ayad university. I went there a few days ago and whenever I met one of my potential teachers, he looked down on me and answered me by saying he was in a rush. Seldom have I met considerate ones. I do not really know what is wrong with our Moroccan university teachers. To put short, there is only one lesson that I have learnt from such sorts of professors. The lesson is that I should be so cautious to grade my students fairly, to treat both girls and boys on an equal footing and to give them the benefit of the doubt all the time.
Omar Bihmidine is high school teacher of English. He obtained his Associate Degree at Choaib Eddoukali University in 2008. His writings take the form of short stories, poems and articles, many of which have been published in Sous Pens magazine, in the ALC magazine in Agadir, and in the late Casablanca analyst newspaper.
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