How to E-Mail a Professor

Sometimes we neglect to explain how to do something, assuming that it should be common knowledge, and then live with constant frustration when others fail to know what we think they should. How to write to one’s professor in an appropriate manner is one such area. Perhaps we should just explain the rules, even if [Read More...]

What I Tell My Students: #AARSBL15 Mentoring Luncheon

The SBL student advisory board put together a wonderful luncheon with great speakers who gave great advice. The funniest was when one speaker, who had become a dean, shared what a colleague told him: now that you are a dean, in two years you will stop writing; in four years you will stop reading; and [Read More...]

What I’m Telling My Students Luncheon #aarsbl15

If you’re a student who will be at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting in Atlanta in November, why not RSVP for the “What I’m Telling My Students Luncheon” that the Student Advisory Board is holding on November 23rd from 11-12:45? If you attend, and have seen the old headshot of mine that was [Read More...]

Imitation, Forgery, and Education #YCAS2015

The discussion of forgery led to a discussion on the way to lunch about the role of imitation in ancient pedagogy. That led me to ponder whether we might not benefit from doing more of that in modern teaching. Many students struggle to express themselves well. Perhaps we should return to this older method of [Read More...]

How To Get The Least Possible Out Of University Religion Classes

Michael Kruger has made a video which describes his own experience of having taken classes with Bart Ehrman, who he depicts as attacking Christianity. He complains that youth groups do not prepare student intellectually for their experience at university. That is true – but what Kruger seems to want is not intellectual and academic preparation, but inoculation that [Read More...]

Read the Syllabus

For students: The syllabus is to the course you are taking what the instruction book is to a video game, or the manual is to your driving test. Of course, in our day and age, many are used to situations in which you can just learn by doing and consult the instructions if and when you find [Read More...]

The 2019 Mindset List

Beloit College has published its latest “Mindset List” – a list of things that characterize this year’s incoming freshmen. One is that there has always been a Benoit Mindest List! But perhaps even more striking for many of us are these: Hybrid automobiles have always been mass produced. Google has always been there, in its [Read More...]

Religion in Israel/Palestine – Trailer for the 2016 Trip

I am planning to lead another trip to Israel and the West Bank in the summer of 2016, lasting about 9 days and departing in late May or early June. My son helped me make a movie trailer for the trip with iMovie, using footage taken by Johnny Traylor on the 2012 trip I led. I am looking [Read More...]

My Blog Post Has Become An Essay

I expanded my recent blog post about the experience of my son discovering RateMyProfessors.com into an essay for Inside Higher Ed. You can now read it on their website: “When My Son Discovered RateMyProfessors.com.”   [Read more...]

Trade Day at #GenCon (Gaming and Education)

Gen Con will be taking place at the end of July, and this year I’ll be attending Trade Day, the day before the activities most gamers are interested in. That day includes a large number of sessions aimed at educators. I was quite astounded by the sheer number of them, so many overlapping sessions that one has to choose [Read More...]

When A Professor’s Son Discovers RateMyProfessor.com

I had an interesting experience today. My son, who is in high school, told me that he had looked me up on RateMyProfessor.com. I’m sure a worried look crossed my face, but I tried my best to retain my composure. Not a lot of students have commented about me and my classes there. But as [Read More...]


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