Combating Late-Semester Blues

Credit: iStock.com/Antonio_Diaz
Credit: iStock.com/Antonio_Diaz

In Rasselas, Samuel Johnson’s philosopher Imlac offers the following bleak assessment of life: “Human life is every where [sic] a state in which much is to be endured, and little to be enjoyed” ([1759] 1999, 31). Having been a teacher for more than 30 years, I desperately hope the same is not true of education. Still, education does come with challenges. In the latter half of the semester last fall, for instance, I was having one of my weekly meetings with my most recent student peer teacher, who assisted me that semester in conducting a section of one of the two interdisciplinary humanities seminars I regularly teach, Intellectual Heritage I: The Good Life. Somehow, our conversation on the day in question veered toward what we dubbed students’ “late-semester blues,” a sort of melancholy that college students may experience owing to the workload of a long three months or more, especially as final exams, final papers, and final projects loom. We chatted briefly about this particular form of malaise, but then our conversation returned to the more immediate topic of my student peer teacher’s lesson planning: she was excitedly preparing to teach one of her favorite Edgar Allan Poe poems, “The Conqueror Worm,” in an upcoming class.


To continue reading, you must be a Teaching Professor Subscriber. Please log in or sign up for full access.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Articles

I have two loves: teaching and learning. Although I love them for different reasons, I’ve been passionate about...
Whether you love it or hate it, online higher education is here to stay. In the 2022–2023 academic...
When educators talk about AI, they seem to fall into one of two camps: one that is vehemently...
Many students struggle with their education due to poor study skills. They wait until the last minute to...
On July 20, 2007, millions of people around the world were filled with a mix of anticipation and...
Most professional program curricula focus on the required specialized knowledge and skills to meet the profession’s needs. Yet...
There are now AI resources to help instructors through all steps of lesson development, from crafting lesson outlines...

Are you signed up for free weekly Teaching Professor updates?

You'll get notified of the newest articles.

The Teaching Professor Conference 2024

June 7-9, 2024 • New Orleans

Connect with Fellow Educators at The Teaching Professor Conference!