I did my research and dug deep into the course offerings. I found some courses that really spoke to me on an instinctual level. For example, one day I found a course about International Business and I was so captivated by it that I talked about it in my lunch hour with my co-workers. I had a great sense of pride that I could share this information with everyone without having to justify or glorify anything. My friends and co-workers were also blown away by this experience and they appreciated the fact that I was self-motivated.
Of course, I am not an expert on all areas of business. However, when it comes to learning about Global Management, I had a distinct advantage. My Master’s dissertation was about this topic. So, I know a little bit about this subject matter. Therefore, when I started doing coursework, the very first thing that I took into consideration was learning how to do my coursework with a partner.
Doing coursework with an expert makes you vulnerable. If you are up against someone who is a much better writer than you are, for example, you might find yourself with a lot of writing to do but very little time to do it. You may be tempted to procrastinate. However, if you are vulnerable, this will lead you to procrastinate even more. This is a vicious cycle.
So, when I began to do my coursework with an academic partner, we tried to make it as open and honest as possible. We knew going in that we were both experienced scholars, and that meant that we could disagree without compromising our overall integrity. Our plans for the course were carefully laid out so that neither of us was left out. It worked, in fact, so well that I have taken this same approach with my every course since.
Today, when I am doing coursework with students who have earned Ph.D.s, they can often sense that I have some sort of advantage over them. They may even be jealous. This is usually a good thing, because it indicates that I have done my research and should know what is best for them. As I said before, I always have a backup plan whenever I face an obstruction in my coursework. Sometimes coursework gets interrupted for many reasons, and it is difficult to predict when or where the next interruption will come from.
With students who earn Ph.D.s, this is much easier to understand. For one thing, it is obvious that the Ph.D. student feels very accomplished and takes the course seriously. If this is the case, it is very difficult to see how someone whose work involves finding flaws and weaknesses in a set of presentations, methodology, or even theories could possibly take time off to do coursework on her own. If I have done my coursework well, and my students have done theirs, then there is no reason for me to do extra coursework in order to help my students out.
It is impossible to be a good professor or teacher unless you feel supported by your peers. This is the nature of the academic community, and it is the reason that coursework is given so much importance in the world of academia. The coursework is an investment in your career, and your skills as a scholar. So if I do my work colleagues like me enough, then I can be sure that they will do the same for me, and they will also take the time to do my coursework and do it well.