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Your teacher taught the wrong course - now what?

What do you do if the instructor taught the wrong class?
What do you do if the instructor taught the wrong class?
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

So you signed up for Intro to Chemistry, paid your fees, bought the book that was listed in the syllabus, and attended class diligently only to discover that the subject that is a prerequisite for your major was not what was taught. Hopefully, you discover this prior to the final week of the term, but this was not the case for one Texas classroom.

As an instructor, I find that students often spend more time and energy looking for loopholes than answers. Students also do not take enough ownership of their education to realize that they are not learning the appropriate materials. However, how can a new student, who is completely new to materials, realize that what they are learning is correct?

The first thing a student should do is read through both the course description and the syllabus. If something feels off they should approach their instructor. If the professor will not listen and fails to take action then they should reach out to either the department chair or the head of that department's curriculum. At larger schools this may require a little more red tape, but addressing it earlier in the semester, students may have more options for a satisfactory outcome.

Failing that, students should review their schools policy on such reviews. Few schools will want the kind of press that Lonestar has received in Texas and across the country, and they may be more willing to act quickly. Finally, students may drop the class and try again with another professor, if students refuse to attend classes the school may be more likely listen to concerns.