Having spent a few years a tertiary institution and having had my fair share of run-ins with so called ‘course representatives,’ I think I can write a textbook that might gain international recognition if I am to critically analyse the assertion that “until a student has become a course representative such a student cannot say he or she is at the top.”
Be that as it may, ardent readers of this column should take note that this write-up will go a long way in reshaping students’ or prospective varsity students’ perception about course representatives.
However, in a bid to lessen the work load on lecturers the need to have a representative arises in various departments of every tertiary institution. Every lecturer will always need somebody who will devote himself or herself in carrying out minor but strenuous assignments such as taking records of students that made payments for textbooks or handouts, going to the bank to deposit money, distribution of textbooks among other things.
There is no clear-cut criterion to appointing a course representative; it’s usually within the prerogative of the lecturer to decide who will emerge as the course representative. In some cases, some students will decline any appointment that will ruin their academic efforts; the lecturer has no option than to dance to the tune of the students.
The high level of power dispensed by these course representatives is overwhelming most especially in schools. That is why it is not advisable for you as a student to underestimate your course representatives most especially if you discover that your faculty reeks with corrupt practices among students and lecturers. Rather, playing along with them wisely will give you an edge.
The laxity of lecturers in recent times have jeopardised the academic performance of the students and at the same time vested more powers in the course representatives. Lazy lecturers hand over examination scripts to their course reps for marking, scoring, and grading. These are classified materials that should be treated with fastidiousness and professionalism, an act that is totally against the tenets of the teaching profession. To this end, course reps are now given the room to maneuver, manipulate, and undermine the scores of their fellow students. Putting aside the marking of examination scripts, there are other measures and nefarious strategies which they could apply to wreck you academically, especially if you are a brilliant student or you have a misunderstanding with them.
Out of spite, these course reps can easily expunge your name from the “book of life” (that contains the names of students that paid for handouts and textbooks of a particular course). To be continued next week)
Students of Yaba College of Technology undergoing accreditation for a seminar
Mass comm 200 level