Compare and contrast

Teaching in a different educational system can be confusing, but it definitely is mind-broadening.

In general, the contrasts in terminology show up with the end of the term (trimester). In America, we proctor an exam and then grade it with an answer key. Here, we invigilate an exam and mark it with a marking scheme.

Here, we write our final exam in the first couple of weeks of the term and then the entire department decides if it is okay or if it needs to be changed. This is called premoderation. After the final exams are all marked and final marks turned in, the department gets together again to consult on the final results. Failing marks need to be explained and the marking of exams is checked for accuracy. This is called postmoderation. It is a very communal approach to university education.

As an English teacher, I also end up teaching my students the American terms even as I struggle to remember the British terms. Here are a few examples. I end sentences with a period which are also known as “full stop”. I put the year of an APA citation in parentheses, but my students put them in brackets.

Yet, one thing is the same everywhere. Coworkers make or break the work experience. The picture at the top is the wonderful bunch that I work alongside in ANU’s Languages and Literature department. Mrs. Muchai, the chair of the department, is seated at the lower left. She has literally written the textbooks that we use for the English classes.

Prayer requests –

Thank you for praying for rain in Kenya. Please, don’t stop. Notice how the grass is beginning to green and the ibis can get some food again as the ground is not as hard.

This is a week off classes and the campus is quiet. Please, pray for the faculty, staff, and students as we prepare our materials and minds for the next trimester that begins at the beginning of May.


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