The selections below are drawn from students’ anonymous, end-of-semester course evaluations. I have organized them by what students take away from my courses: a love for literature and improved reading and writing skills. To help students reach these goals I engage them in stimulating, productive, and hospitable discussions and challenge them to take charge of their own learning.
I Help Students Develop an Appreciation for Literature
Dr. Fleming is a great teacher who really helps his students engage with the material. I always knew what was expected of me. I feel like I learned a lot in this course, particularly regarding literary theory.
I noticed that I talked more about English literature to family and friends then I’ve ever done before.
This class made me think about the world in a completely different way and draw connections between things that I never had before.
I absolutely loved everything I’ve learned. Not only has it “resparked” my love of English and close reading, I now see that the English major isn’t solely about close reading texts. That is just a tool to think critically in interpreting life and other phenomena. Dr. Fleming really encourages us to go beyond normal interpretation or go beyond examining evident evidence.
I Help Students Improve their Reading Skills
All assignments from the first half of the class were tied to the second half of the semester. It helped to re-read the required works with a fresh perspective and aided the ability to solidify the understanding of the course contents.
Dr. Fleming is a great professor and made sure we understood what we read, and his main concern was that we learned something, not that we regurgitate facts on a quiz or exam. I loved the selection of works that we read, and feel that we covered a good breadth of material.
This course increased my critical thinking skills by forcing me to delve deeper into the meaning of a piece of writing and pick it apart by the syllables, structure, stresses, etc. instead of just looking for the overall theme like I have in the past. It gave me a better understanding of the foundation of English Literature and how different pieces of writing have impacted and built off one another.
I will take away so much from this class – a love for the texts we read, a better understanding of poetry’s mechanics, a proficiency with close readings, an openness to various readings of material, etc. I can’t wait to use these skills in my other English courses.
I Help Students Improve Their Writing
Dr. Fleming is respectful and easy to approach. He is a hard grader (which is not a bad thing) but incredibly fair. He provides insightful feedback on papers so that students can learn from mistakes and grow as writers … I also really, really appreciate that he provides examples of exemplary student work so that students have an idea of what he’s look for in assignments.
He gives clear and detailed feedback on writing assignments that, along with what I learn in class, enables me to become a better writer.
Dr. Fleming gives interesting and creative assignments designed to help us think about what we’re reading and apply what we’ve learned. He’s extremely approachable and available to help students work through everything from a thesis to a project idea to a draft, and he gives detailed and invaluable feedback on finished work.
Dr. Fleming is really available to his students; easy to communicate with by email and during his office hours. I found it very helpful to get his feedback on my papers during the writing process; he is so good at helping you to zero in on what your thesis is, and in giving feedback on both drafts and final submissions that makes your writing better.
This class has changed the way I think about my writing and how I expect my audience to read it, which has helped me tremendously develop into a better writer.
I Engage Students in Stimulating, Productive, and Hospitable Discussions
Dr. Fleming keeps the class focused on arguments based in the text, is always prepared with lots of useful and insightful thoughts and passages, demonstrates and helps the class through close readings constantly, and–regardless of how students respond–finds a way to integrate their comments into the discussion.
I like that he makes a point of engaging everyone in the class, even students who are not quick to participate through asking them to read aloud.
Dr. Fleming is phenomenal about eliciting great class discussions. He also chooses an interesting variety of works for his syllabus, giving us a good taste of the topic of the class, and has so much knowledge about everything we read.
He’s good at creating an atmosphere where everyone gets to know each other (for example, he had us practice reciting each other’s names for the first month of class, which helped us feel more connected to each other), making us all feel comfortable during class discussions. Though there was some lecture, he really focused on our class discussions, which I liked, and he welcomed questions, which was nice. Dr. Fleming is also great about keeping our class on track and focused.
The collaborative nature and friendliness of the environment made it easier for me to ask questions and voice my opinion.
Dr. Fleming is a passionate and creative professor, his methods and objectives immediately made this clear. He is also an excellent at mediating and facilitating discussion.
I Challenge Students to Take Charge of Their Own Learning
I enjoyed the variety of assignments that Dr. Fleming presented us with. Instead of writing paper after boring paper, we were encouraged to express our knowledge of the material through unique assignments such as creating social media profiles for characters from Great Expectations, creating Pecha Kucha presentations, and editing Wikipedia.
Dr. Fleming was very patient and willing to help when students struggled to learn certain material.
This was my best class performance this semester, but certainly not my easiest!
Dr. Fleming is great at interacting and helping students of all different skill levels.
Dr. Fleming is really challenging, but not the kind of challenging that makes you feel less of a scholar. I mean the kind of challenging that makes you want to be better.