View Full Version : There are 2 types of student

08-23-2010, 12:53 PM
In my 18 months of teaching PHP I found that there are couple of types of students. There are those who have a natural aptitude, living and breathing the stuff. They cant wait to get cracking and email me their homework normally within a couple of hours after I set it. These guys have a goal and that is to learn the language. They see the potential and are comfortable coding their own app within a week or so of starting. The ingenuity of these people is outstanding and although I find myself correcting some aspects of the homework they tend to get round any issues by being ingenious based on their knowledge. These people keep me on my toes.

But there are those who's goal is to develop an idea which has been brewing. It's going to make them millions but unfortunately they don't have the budget to employ a developer so they are forced to roll their sleeves up and become a programmer over night. This is definitely the wrong motivation and I expect most of my students fall into this category which is a shame.

So... Do I take their money, deliver the course and run or do I implement an acceptance questionnaire in order to take on the most interested students.

Do I stress the importance of the course and highlight the way to get the best of it is to work at it.

Its disappointing when I get to the end of the course and the student makes day 1 mistakes. It reflects on me as a teacher I think.

08-24-2010, 01:00 AM
i think you can issue a warning as above to the applicants. assuming they have attain the age of reason (Im still waiting for mine) they have the right to chose as you have the right to suspend if you really think it is wasting your time
i dont believe any teacher can expect 100% success and although i can see how you would feel that i donet think it honestly reflects on you if you have success with others

08-24-2010, 06:24 AM
...That everyone who finishes your course will have understood it completely and will be off building fully functioning and complex web apps but I just don't think that will happen with every student.

I also don't think that someone's motivation for learning will affect their ability in PHP. One of your students may come with the motivation of bringing together his/her dream site/idea one day and actually make it happen. Could be the next Facebook or Twitter and then you'd be proud!

Students may also come with the thought that they really just want to add a little functionality, like a contact form with captcha, to their customer's sites but are willing to pay for the course and get what they want out of it. That's up to them.

Some will never get it.

Then you'll get the ones who pick up and fly like Jim and his goats.

Your goal should be delivering good quality lessons and that is what you do. If some fly and some don't you can't say that reflects on you.

The Kung Fu teacher teaches Kung Fu. They don't ask if the student will use it for self defence or kicking seven bales out of people in the pub on a Saturday night. They just try and teach the right way and the student makes their own way...


08-24-2010, 06:48 AM
wax on wax off

08-24-2010, 06:52 AM
pick up coat hang up coat

08-26-2010, 03:17 PM
Hey DJ...

So - My job role has kinda changed now at work. I used to be a pixel-pusher but I am now considered A) pretty handy with CSS (thanks Ove) with B) a knowledge (and passion for) coding PHP.

I thought of you today when I was updating my SVN files via the terminal console and thought... "what would DJ think?" a mere pixel pusher!

I think I just wanted to say thanks for your teaching. It has been invaluable to me and now excites me more than design... (where's my gob-smacked smiley?)

Anyhoo, back to your question.... Do you need the money? Maybe you could set homework earlier and weed out the ones that are just wasting your time?


08-26-2010, 03:20 PM
so a great designer and now a bloody good coder

I hate you!

08-26-2010, 03:25 PM
haha - I wish! Coding is passion but I'm FAR from being a GOOD coder...

Sorry, did it sound like I was saying I was good... not that at all, just odd how my priorities have changed... I'm still an ace designer of course ;)