Oct 6, 2021
Nearing mid-semester, we (the TA’s) were required to submit early warning midterm grades to WIU admin. But before we did that, our instructor said it would be a good idea to personally email the students in our classes who would be affected by this early warning system. The idea behind this was to provide the students a heads-up chance to realize where they stood grade-wise, and to hopefully encourage them to work a little harder to submit assignments on time. In addition, we were to clarify with those students that if they felt they were too far behind and wouldn’t be able to catch up, they might need to speak with their advisor and consider taking a step back to English 100. Initially I thought it would be no big deal to do this, but looking at the number of students affected, and trying to come up with tactful ways of communicating the urgency of their status to them without discouraging them, was much more agonizing than I thought it would be. Ultimately, I sent out eight emails to struggling students. (sigh) One of my least favorite parts of teaching!