Periodic evaluation of KFL4050 – Theorising gender equality, autumn 2012
(Note that a periodic evaluation of this course exists for the first two years, 2010 and 2011, in Norwegian).
Professor Øystein Gullvåg Holter
13 students took the exam, of these, 12 pass, 1 fail (F). The 12 who passed got the following grades: 1 A, 3 B, 5 C, 2 D, 1 E. The results are fairly similar to the results from the two first years of the course.
The curriculum has been somewhat reduced from 2011, which has worked well, although the students still often struggle with getting an overview and understanding the main theory positions in the field. More than other KFL courses, KFL4050 is in need of more systematic, pedagogical texts that can help the students’ orientation. The learning curve, now, is steeper than it needs to be.
The teaching has mainly been in a group setting, alternating between lectures and discussions, sometimes with two subgroups. The informal setting and discussions have been a plus. According to the student evaluations, the teaching has been good, especially regarding engagement, but it could have been better structured. Oral student presentations functioned well. Also, students were satisfied with the two guest lectures (Solveig Bergman), and felt that getting an alternative perspective aside from the main teacher was useful.
A main problem with the course, autumn 12, was that it became too condensed, with too few and long sessions – as noted in the evaluations. Also, students wanted more seminar time.
Most of the students participated in all course sessions (5 out of 7 were obligatory).
Practical, resources etc
We were able to use the Centre’s own locale – room 320, which was a plus. However, we sometimes lacked another room for subgroup discussion. Technical resources worked OK.
The exam form, three day home exam, has not been changed from earlier years, and has functioned well this time also.
Feedback to teachers and administration
Feedback concerning information about the course
Is the course correctly defined concerning recommended requirements?
Yes. This is an interdisciplinary course, but with a social science main focus. Students who lack any kind of social science background have a handicap and can feel lost.
Are there any changes since the last periodic evaluation?
Yes, the following changes:
- Participation has become mandatory (80%)
- Curriculum has been reduced
- A group / subgroup style of work and discussion has been further developed
Suggestions for improvement
The curriculum needs more pedagogical and overview texts, or even better, a course book. Also, more should be done to strengthen student activity, example, discussing two theory perspectives, one against the other, in groups.