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After over three years at wordpress.com, I’ve decided to get my own domain for my sites. I’m still using a wordpress platform but having my own domain and working with a hosting company gives me a bit more flexibility. This blog has now moved to http://guerson.com/blog/
Thanks for visiting. I’ll work on redirecting it soon.

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Tomorrow I’ll lead my first set of tutorials. In history, a tutorial (aka a conference session at Concordia) is dedicated mostly to discussing primary sources and teaching students how to read critically and how to get their points across. If done properly, I see it as also a venue where the students will learn most of the skills we expect of history students – the ability to write a variety of assignments based on secondary or primary sources and to question those sources with good analytical skills.

Teaching was precisely what first attracted me into a degree in history. Ironically, however, my career so far has been heavily focused on research and I have had no opportunity to teach so far. It’s only now, in my fifth year, that I’m finally getting to do what I came here to do: to teach university students. Although I haven’t taught, I’ve certainly never stopped thinking and preparing myself. I have taken a number of teaching workshops, I have had endless discussions with colleagues and professors about their teaching experiences, I have even helped organize a series of teaching history workshops in my department. But now the time of truth approaches: tomorrow at 9AM I’ll hold my first tutorial. I hope it goes well… I’ll come back and tell you about it…

Update…

Well, it’s done. I had two tutorials this morning, one from 9-10 and another from 10-11.┬á Both of them were great! From the 19 students that showed up today, only one hadn’t done the readings . I guess things will change once the semester gets busier and they start having midterms in other classes. It was a very good introduction to teaching since both groups were made mostly of good, eager students. I still need to work on my general pacing – parts of the first tutorial went a little faster than I anticipated – but I can say that I got every single student to participate today. So I think I fulfilled my duty ­čśë I’m curious to see what the groups I’ll have on thursday are like…