Classes Q and A

TELOS Classes Q & A

See also:   TELOS Registration Q & A

What size are the classes?
Classes may be anywhere from eight to 39 students.  Those classes with larger numbers of students are often lecture classes.  Those sized 20 and under are more likely to be discussion or activity classes.

Are there assigned readings?  
The great majority of classes do not have assigned readings.  Occasionally there is a course like “Great Decisions” where a text is used and the cost of it is included in the class fee.  Other courses focus on a specific text such as the course about Thomas Mann’s Buddenbrooks:  the Decline of a Family.  While the text is not required, most students will have read it or arrange to do so by purchasing it or obtaining it from a library. The most frequent occurrence is the presentation of a bibliography by the instructor or a reference to a favorite resource.  In that case, quite a few students will arrange to read one of more of the books, but doing so is not required.

Do I receive a grade?
No grades are given in the TELOS classes.

Are there tests?
There are no “official” tests in the classes.   Occasionally an instructor may distribute a self-test to help students understand what they know about a topic, but these are for the benefit of the student and are not given to the instructor – unless anonymously.

Occasionally a course may list a prerequisite; is it necessary to have taken that course in order to register? 
Prerequisites for TELOS classes are suggested, not required.  Taking the prerequisite would allow you to enjoy and participate in the class more effectively, because the class assumes you know what was discussed in the previous class.  And, of course, it would be inappropriate to disrupt the progress of the other students in the class by asking too many questions about previous material. If you want more input, you can also stop by to talk to the instructor before or after his or her class in the current term.  Or you could send an e-mail to the BCCE TELOS Program at asking that it be forwarded to the instructor.

Is there a way to get credit or transcript?
TELOS classes are not credit classes in the traditional sense. Some students may need evidence of having attended a certain number of classroom hours.  In that case,  they may request a Certificate of Completion.  For information about credit and transcript, see Course Completion Certificate.

Are there any suggested guides for student behavior in classes?
Though they may occasionally forget, most students are aware that they should shut off their cell phones during class and respect the time and opinions of the instructor and other students, i.e. try not to be the only student asking questions.  What some students may not be aware of is the effect their perfumes, lotions, hairsprays, and aftershave may have on others.  In consideration of those who are sensitive to chemicals or fragrances, including those who have Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) or chemical injury, you are kindly asked to refrain from wearing or using scented lotions, hair products, or any fragrances in respect of your fellow students and staff.

May I bring a guest to class?
While it would definitely be nice to bring a guest; per state law, only people who paid tuition are allowed in classrooms.  However, if you are interested in introducing a friend to TELOS, friends are welcome at the events sponsored by TSO.  For instance, the “Coffee and Wisdom” events on the first Friday of the month and between-quarter seminars may include guests.  BUT . . . be  sure to register the guests as the seats at these events are limited.

Is it OK to eat during class?
Many students bring drinks and snacks to class. The key thing to remember, when doing so, is to clean up your space when you leave.  Don’t leave cups and trash for students in the following class.

How do I know what a class will be like, what teaching style an instructor has?  Lecture, discussion, combination, etc.
  • Attend course preview (Taste of TELOS) to listen to a sample of instructors describe their courses (often the presenters are new instructors) and meet them informally.
  • View the short video clips of a few of the instructors on the BCCE online course catalog.
    • Instructor may say students look at power point slides.
    • Instructor may indicate he or she will lecture and then facilitate discussion.
    • Instructor could note that guests will join him or her.
    • Instructor says “I will talk about” in which case the course will probably be a largely lecture class.
  • Read course description in paper or online catalog. If you see any of the following types of text in the course description, you can probably expect a discussion class:
    • “Join in a lively discussion.”
    • “Watch presentations and engage in lively discussion.”
    • “It will be a participatory discussion class.”
    • “We’ll watch and discuss some of the best movies.”
    • “View film clips.”
    • “Weekly discussions based upon a book.”
  • And of course, chat with fellow students about their favorite instructors – but be sure to find out why they like them. As with anything, students vary in their preferences for certain instructors.  There are, however, some instructors who are universally liked.  You can often figure out the names of those instructors by the speed with which their courses go to a wait-list.

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