When you teach a large lecture course, your students may be everywhere you are

A former student of mine distributes Gator T-shirts to students who are season ticket holders.

A former student of mine distributes Gator T-shirts to students who are season ticket holders.

I teach a course that has about 250 students each semester. That’s about 500 students a year.

And they’re everywhere. Not just in the auditorium.

I enjoy running into my current and former student on campus. With almost 50,000 students on campus, UF can be a big and impersonal place. So hearing, “Hi, Dr. Dodd” or “Hi, Professor, I was in MMC 2100 last semester” makes the teaching setting seem more personal.

When I stopped at the football stadium to take a photo of the students distributing Gator T-shirts to season ticket holders, the student who held up the shirt said, “Is this for MMC 2100?”

“Ah,” I said. “You must be a MMC 2100 alum.”

“I am. I loved MMC 2100.”

Well, that was a nice, unexpected endorsement. She said she knew I enjoyed taking photos to use in my PowerPoint presentation so she bet I was going to be using this photo is class. And, she was right. I’ll use it when we talk about public relations, advertising and marketing. The Gators are on the front, but on the back is the logo fro UF’s official soft drink — Pepsi.

Tonight at a local restaurant, the host greeted us with, “Hi, Dr. Dodd.”

Another MMC 2100 alum.

That led to a discussion of the courses he is taking this semester and his career plans. He has continued writing for the blog he started in MMC 2100. He’s just started making money with his blog — $40.

In Mass Communication Teaching, the students who are teaching assistants asked about what they should wear on days they aren’t teaching. Could they wear shorts?

I told them that students would realize that they are students, too. Wearing shorts is OK — although the style of shorts could be a factor. But the real issue was not when they would see their students on campus but when they would see their students — and their students would see them — off campus.


  1. I remember bumping into a student at Target after school one day. This was a student that I knew liked me, so I was surprised when she didn’t say hi after I walked by. I walked by again and said hello. She looked at me like “who are you?” and then realized who I was! It was quite funny.

    Of course I’ve run into them in restaurants as well. I got some free breadsticks once from a former student who dropped out to get her GED. hehe (at the free breadsticks, not the dropping out!)


  2. Your site was extremely interesting, especially since I was searching for thoughts on this subject last Thursday.


  3. what a great site and informative posts, I will add a backlink and bookmark your site. Keep up the good work!


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